I expected to just ‘watch’ and ‘see’ a lot of thinks in Uganda with Hearts & Hope. Prior to leaving on our trip, I selfishly did not want to get too connected to what I was doing or experiencing because I did not want to be overly impacted.
When we arrived at our first village school, I was amazed by what should be obvious, children are children no matter where in the world you are. They are funny, shy, happy, and sad. I was humbled by how happy they were to see someone come to visit them. Before long it became clear that these children had true joy and their needs were as simple as those of all children; they just wanted to spend time with someone, hold someone’s hand, play and laugh with someone.
I was humbled by how much the adults that made up the villages and schools gave their visitors. They gave us food that they could not afford to give away, and they gave it to us abundantly and with smiles. The greetings we received and the activities we participated in at the schools and villages allow you to understand how important we all can be to each other, if we listen to what God has put in our hearts, and allow ourselves to be.
One morning, prior to us leaving for a village, one of our team members provided a devotional based on a book she had read. In the book a mother described one of her children that played with their trash. While the mother felt it was indeed trash, the child found it to be something different and found joy in playing and creating with it. Later that afternoon, we visited the home of a young boy (Moses). Moses had a goiter removed from his neck during the course of 2017, benefiting from people listening to God and doing His work through Hearts & Hope. As we walked toward Moses’ house we saw the following that he had made:
I believe that God, our Father, works everything together for the good of His children and pays incredible attention to all details. Our visit with the children and people of Uganda allowed us to pay attention to some details. It allowed us to understand that God’s love, generosity, loving kindness and hope are manifest in each of us. It is a choice that we all make, every day, to reveal God’s love to each other.
Hearts & Hope is a nonprofit organization focused on unlocking the potential of people in Uganda through relationships with people in the US.