Yesterday, I said my final goodbyes, and I left Uganda. For the last month or so, I have been trying to find words to express how amazing my time here has been, but I have failed to come up with the right words to express such joy.
My time in Uganda was not easy. It was lonely; it was frustrating; it was exhausting; it was dirty and it was heart wrenching. But through it all, it only brought me closer to the Lord, and I experienced His joy, His love, His patience and His goodness in all moments, but specifically in those awful moments where I just wanted to quit.
I use to hear the saying “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good,” and think it was the most cliché saying ever even though I knew it was true. But here, in Uganda, that saying was no longer cliché to me, but my reality. I saw the worst of things, I took care of babies that shouldn’t even be alive, I saw moms who didn’t even react when their babies were taken from of them, but y’all, God is good all the time, and all the time God is good. These babies that shouldn’t be alive, the Lord healed them; they’re healthy and they’re growing into such fat little babes. The worst of things that I faced simply became the best of things because I surrendered to God and allowed Him to take control of the situations.
There was a season where I just wanted to quit. I was in a really bad place, I was struggling because the romance had worn off and the reality had set in, I was ready to come home. Yet I continued to cry out to the Lord, “Oh Lord, help me continue persevering, help me to continue loving these babies even when I don’t want to, help me Lord to see more of You.” After continuing to cry out, the Lord continued to carry me through that dark season and He began showing me great and unsearchable things that I did not know and had not experienced, His joy, wonder and perspective.
I started to see His goodness throughout all my kids and their bad situations and I would see how the Lord has rescued them, loved them and given them hope. I would look at old pictures of my kids and see how far that Lord had brought them, and I would simply be in awe. I would be in awe of who He is, how miraculous He is and how He is good all the time.
Throughout it all, the Lord has given me such a hunger for more of Him. He has given me a hunger to love His people and serve His Kingdom. I am so beyond thankful for everything I have learned and experienced during my time in Uganda. It’s exactly what I was praying for a year ago. I wanted a new perspective of Christianity, I wanted to know the Lord on a deeper level, and Africa did just that.
But today, today, I am absolutely broken and distraught. I can’t control the tears that are steaming down my face. My heart is hurting because I fell in love with my kids, and I left my new family. I was a mom and I left my children. I was a daughter and I left my parents. I was a sister and I left my siblings. But this I know, and this I carry close to my heart, the Lord will carry me through like He always does. I may not see these kids grow up, but I am believing my prayers for all my babies will come to fruition, and that one day I’ll see them in heaven, and that for me is the biggest and best reward one can have when feeling broken and saying goodbye.
Thank you, Lord, for calling me to Africa. Thank you, Lord, for calling me daughter and for rescuing me like you rescued my babies. You are truly good.