When we got on the road leaving out of Kigumba (on the main highway) toward Rwokayata Village (the farm), my heart was pounding. We had 20 minute car ride left. I began to recognize where I was, and also seeing familiar sights. We drove by Geofrey's house....the bore hole with children smiling and pumping...the obnoxiously large termite hill...the acacia garden...and then we turned right. Women began singing and dancing. Familiar faces were smiling and greeting us. It was about an hour until dinner and I had that same feeling you get when you arrive home after a long trip away.
For the next week, I got to catch up with old friends and meet new ones. The farm is always changing, there is always a new building or crop. Richard toured us around to see the new medical clinic and vocational school that were being built. The next morning, we began construction of the new teacher's house alongside some local builders. Throughout that week, we also prepared for the team that would be arriving soon.
The following thursday, we traveled to the city of Jinja to purchase supplies for the Yobel Jewelry Project. We went to the leather tannery and a few fabric shops. That evening, we stayed with our friends Joe and Melissa. It was good to see them. Friday morning, we traveled from Jinja to Entebbe and meet the team of 16. That evening we traveled back to the farm.
Over the following few days, the team was introduced to the village life of Northern Uganda and I loved seeing their reactions and responses to what they experienced. Then for the next 2 weeks, everyone focused on different tasks. Some worked with some of the men and women in the jewelry project creating new designs and samples. Others worked on the construction of the teacher's home, and everyone at one point was able to do a few hours of home visits. During the home visits, we would help with daily tasks of gardening and planting or cleaning. Some of the team members were physical therapists, so it was great for them to work with kids and adults that have disabilities or general pain.
The highlight of my time with the team came at a time I did not expect. We were at the weekly friday jewelry meeting, and our team had brought supplies to do foot washing and painting nails. I decided to go play music for them while the women were getting 'pampered' :)! I sat down and began to play 'Endlessly' by Desperation Band. At that moment, I was struck by the joy in the women's faces to have their feet washed. The lyrics to the chorus are:
"With your majesty here, I fall to my knees, I love you endlessly.
With the beauty of your son, I find myself undone, I love you endlessly."
I can't really explain what I felt in that moment. But seeing the beauty of Christ in the face's of those people in that moment is something I will never forget.
Over the next few days, projects were continued and relationships were formed that will hopefully last forever. As usual haha, I was and will continue to be asked to bring my guitar to every gathering and play some music. I love it though, I know that music is a gift that the Lord has given me and I enjoy blessing others with it.
So, this is a very short summary of the time at the farm. Since being at the farm, I have also traveled to eastern Uganda to do some things with YoungLife volunteers, and now I am in Jinja. I will be posting about those things as well. On July 2nd, I will be traveling back to the farm and staying for 2 weeks before I head back home. Thank you for your involvement in my life and work in Uganda. Your prayers are more appreciated than you know.