As I sit down to write this post, my family just endured a cold ride home from church in the pouring rain. It was my turn to preach this week as the elders continue to focus on topics related to salvation. We are really trying to get back to the foundational truths of our Christian faith. Not only do we benefit by getting back to basics, but its a message that desperately needs to be communicated to the surrounding community. As I spoke, God brought thunder and rain upon the tin roof of the church. I’m not sure if it was to reinforce the message or to drown out my words.
We tried our best to wait out the rain, but this was done with much anxiety. The windows of our home are just wood frames with screens over them. Inside, there are wood shutters that we are able to close, but even they can’t block out all the water during heavy rains. Up high in the living room are vents which have no covers at all. If the rain comes from the right direction with enough wind, we get lovely showers in most of our dining room and living room. Today we didn’t anticipate the rain, so it was highly likely that the rain was pouring in on our beds, homeschool books, and maybe even the sewing machine.
We left the church a little earlier than most, braving the rain on our 4-wheeler in order to get home with the hopes of salvaging what we could. Our family of five fits quite nicely on our 4-wheeler on ordinary days, but racing home through the rain in our Sunday best must have been quite a site. In any case, we arrived safely and found that the direction of the wind was friendly to us today. No water damage to speak of. We all changed into warm and dry clothes, settling in for our Sunday tradition of boiled pumpkin with g-nut sauce. This has become a favorite part of our Sundays, and is one of our favorite meals.
As an extra surprise for us, not only was the house relatively dry, but the electricity had come back on. Every day our solar panel charges a bank of four batteries for our home. In the evenings we try our best to conserve that electricity by using LED lanterns, or even putting our I-Phones up high to utilize the built-in LED light. Before we go to bed we shut off the solar powered freezer in order to conserve even more electricity. In spite of our efforts, we regularly wake with no electricity to the living area of the home. Typically a rainy morning like this one will further delay the restoration of power, but we must have had enough sunshine prior to the rain. During daylight hours we get all of our battery powered lights and backup devices recharged again for the next day.
As for the ministry here at Musana Camps, we are finishing up a landmark weekend. Another Christian Ministry sent
their youth to Musana Camps for a weekend of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood training. This was the first time that we have been able to host a group and teach the curriculum ourselves. We instructed these young men and women on the Biblical pillars of both manhood and womanhood, and built into the instruction with games and experiences that reinforce the lesson plans. The youth have had a great camp, really enjoying the beauty of this place. We have had moments of individual counseling and group questions that affirm for us the quality of the teaching the need for more of it. We are thankful for what God is doing to affect change in the next generation of Ugandans!
In our family, we ask that you pray for Benjamin. Being the oldest boy at camp by about 5 years, he is quickly changing interests and finding that he has little in common. The teenage years will only widen that gap for a little while, so we see that he is finding Uganda to be a lonely place. I am hoping to make it a higher priority to engage with him as his father, but more is needed. As the school year nears completion we are hoping to have him start working with the construction crew on some projects at camp, especially since he has such an interest in it. Also, there will be a Missionary Kids camp taking place in July. During that camp there are several missionary kids around his age that he will get to interact with and hopefully establish some friendships.
As we head into another week, we are most excited in the anticipation of the arrival of the Tofslies! Staci’s mom and dad fly in on Tuesday afternoon, and will be joining us here in Uganda for one month. We are so excited to share this place with them, and to have the opportunity for them to see what God has brought us to and the work he has for us here. We know they will be a great help to us, and also that our kids can’t wait to see their grandparents. Please pray that their time here is well spent, and that we are all able to stay in good health during this visit.
Thank you so much for your prayers and support of us in this ministry to the people of Uganda. He has given us peace and comfort here, protected us from illness, and has made this feel like home.