Tuesday, June 28, 2011

reflections on the Wazungu wengi...

The invading hoard of 11 Wazungu has come and gone. And I already miss them dearly. They are on a plane as I type (all except 3 stragglers). To be honest it was just shy of 2 weeks of utter chaos. Hosting everyone meant lots of days of constant motion for our family. We are exhausted but so blessed. I already cried twice spontaneously out of nowhere. Their fellowship, their excitement, their willingness to serve, and their friendship was all just precious to us. When they came we did not know half the group but I know count them all as close friends. Being thrust into a crazy 2 weeks together will fast track your relationship for sure.


We had a debrief session and love fest sharing time of encouragement yesterday followed by lunch together. It was 2 hours of crying, sharing, praying, celebrating, and being together. Oh, how I needed that. They made such an impact in their short time here and I also sense there will be more to come. Before they left I shared with them a list I started one morning of all they did while they were here. I hastily scribbled the list on 3 torn and folded pieces of paper because it kept getting longer and longer the more I reflected. I think the biggest results from this time are internal, immeasurable to others, and allude a photograph but here is the list because it gives a glimpse of what a group of people who love God and love others can do in a short time....

*hosted 3 days of conversation hours at Pamoja and now have many of our neighbors saying "see you later alligator"eng convo hour

*recovered from jet lag and culture shock and never complained once

chicago team 041.jpgedit

*took a well earned boat trip and beach day at prison island
chicago team 050.jpgedit

*visited a computer teacher in training and met his grandfather

danny's pics Z 151.jpgedit

*Stopped by a local maternity clinic on prayer walk

*Painted murals for a local primary school (Pic to come soon)

*Debated technology as the source of all evil with a local secondary school

henna, kids camp, idi's school 122.jpgedit

*Survived the all rice and carbs and oil everyday diet!

sambusaas

*Planned a 3 day crazy kids camp for 30-50 kids (depending on the day) and did it with love and joy!

papa day, kids camp 1st day 130.jpgedit

*Rode the dala dala everyday and survived the sweat and the squash

100_0208.jpgedit

* Worshiped with a local body and were a bit confused by the sheer number of offerings

*embraced the sweat, dust, & dirt...and needed lots of laundry washed!

chicago team 032.jpgedit

*Planned and ran a football tournament that is still the talk of the neighborhood

football tournamanet-mchezo wa mpira 228.jpgedit

*Helped repair cars alongside Pamoja students and learned from them

*completed a Scavenger Hunt in Stonetown—in which cheese & coffee proved to be quite a challenge!

100_0314.jpgedit

pastor bill with coffee

*Praised Him together in word and deed

.

*Prayer walked and asked God to bless the people here

*Fixed computers at the ministry of health

*Visited, read stories, and taught at a local school exhibiting much flexibility when plans were suddenly changed

papa day, kids camp 1st day 009.jpgedit

*sang your hearts out at local school and kept many students laughing

eden school with chi team 026.jpgedit

*Visited a local school for the deaf and learned some local sign language

sign language

*Bargained for shoes, spices, and fabric in the local market...sometimes getting white price :) but getting their barter on!

100_0299.jpgedit

*Planned and executed a 3 day business seminar that blessed local entrepreneurs with excellence

DSC_7146.jpgedit

*Visited our friend and local tour guide company owner and learned how to cook local bread....so what if some fell in the fire...

100_0457.jpgedit

*Visited our neighbors and friends and learned how to make many local dishes including kachori

DSC_6906.jpgedit

*Were brave enough to embark on an all day local fishing expedition with some neighbors

henna, kids camp, idi's school 141.jpgedit

*Drank warm soda and sugar biscuits with the student government and headmaster of a local secondary school

henna, kids camp, idi's school 136.jpgedit

*Served us and our families: washed dishes, gave massages, changed blow out diapers, braided hair, and painted little girl toes....so appreciated!

papa day, kids camp 1st day 089.jpgedit

henna, kids camp, idi's school 100.jpgedit

*Sang songs, taught, and learned greetings with the watoto wa shule

danny's pics Z 249.jpgEDITdanny's pics Z 267.jpgedit

*Learned to appreciate internet speed, variety, and all things Chicago more

*Prepared and tirelessly cut out hearts, filled water balloons, and evenly distributed food into “parcels”

henna, kids camp, idi's school 005.jpgedit

henna, kids camp, idi's school 137.jpgedit

*Ate at Forodhani and even tried "50-50 juice" (we call the sugar cane juice 50-50 juice because that is about the percentage you have of getting some unpleasant bathroom issues after drinking it...but I would say it is worth it!)

zbarpizza

*Played musical chairs with deaf children

deaf school

*Responded to an urgent need and went to the hospital to pray for healing

chicago team 022.jpgeditthis one

*Brought listening ears, encouragement, perspective, prayer for our team

chicago team 011.jpgedit

*learned to take opportunities to just be with people: small talk with a machine wielding guard at the bank and learned you can talk to anyone

*brought and received many gifts

team wearing kangas, fish in fridge 001.jpgedit

*Learned to live more "Inshallah"...take life as it comes...

*Got traditional henna done by a beautiful and "heavy" Pamoja student (the way she refers to herself after taking my class ..instead of using the word "fat")

henna, kids camp, idi's school 011.jpgedit

*Taught and helped our team develop healthy community goals and strategies & cared for our kids with love so we could all attend!

DSC_6765.jpgedit


DSC_6773.jpgedit

*Worshipped our Creator and Savior in the dark (no power one night) in 2 languages but with the same heart

team wearing kangas, fish in fridge 004.jpgedit

*stepped out of their comfort zone and learned there is much to learn there

henna, kids camp, idi's school 099.jpgedit

*Were flexible, loving, tireless servants of Jesus. Brought blessing and received blessing. Thanks to everyone on the team and to everyone who made it possible for them to come! It was awesome. God is good. We miss you already. And as all good Waswahili say .... Karibuni tena...

2 comments:

jkww said...

Yay! That's so awesome! Praise God! I'll just have to get over my jealousy that now I am not in the very small group of peeps who have seen the sights and smelled the smells and tasted the flavors of the island ;) I have my airfare watchdog set for any flights that dip under $1500...

Austrian Adventure said...

Thanks so much for all the great pictures and updates about the team. I was thinking about you guys and praying as they were there and we were in Chicago! Miss you guys and so glad they were an encouragement and blessing to you and the island.