Sometimes it is a thankless job, or maybe I should say most of the time. Don't get me wrong, we are not here for the thank you's because we could get that somewhere else and probably with less work. I think I have heard people talk of this in the medical profession as well. I am not talking about the polite thank you like when we teach our kids manners, but something here on earth, that helps us make sense of why we are here doing God's work. Maybe a little encouragement because missionary work is not all fun and games, it is hard work.
It all came together tonight while talking with one of our boys. We have talked on several occasions and he is quite reserved when it comes to telling what is going on inside. He lost his mom when he was about three or four and his dad a few years later. He had been bounced around to a few relatives and to a children's center and back to relatives and living a pretty tough life, fending for himself most of the time. He was working to support himself at age twelve as a fisherman.
Tonight as we were talking he said he wanted to share something with me. He said; "I am not here for the school fees or the food or even the bed, I could probably manage with some of that". As he touched his heart he said; "I am here for the family and the love that I get here because that is something I can't get anywhere else."
Have you seen the TV shows that when you say the right answer all the balloons fall from the ceiling and the sirens go off? OK anyone old enough to have seen Groucho Marks re-runs? Well it was like that! I wish Robyn was here, to hear it, because that is what we have been tirelessly trying to create, and maybe we have been successful in the eyes of this young man in his life. Maybe someday he will be able to show that same love to his family when the time comes. We have said from the beginning, that "family" is what needs to be developed here in Uganda and maybe we are on the right track!
This is a tribute to all of our supporters, volunteers and church partners who all make this happen and most of all to you Lord for directing us to do your work of taking care of these children.