I am in a blogging frenzy. Â I usually blog only something that I feel is worth writing about which is why I write so infrequently. Â But this last week I can't seem to stop! Â
Rosalie posted something about a little boy named Ronnie recently on her blog soulshinesister.tumbler.com. Â Ronnie is possibly four, five or six, his mom doesn't know. Â He has an older sister named Atim who also is of questionable age. Â Both of them are quiet shy kids. Â This is mostly due to the fact that their mom is a raging alcoholic who frequently beats Atim and leaves them home alone with no food. Â Atim is in our school program and we have gotten to know this sad story over the last year. Â He mom needs Jesus, like we all do. Â So in an effort to get the kids out of a terrible living situation and try to help the mom, we offered to find them places to live. Â
The mom was okay with this plan. Â She promised not to drink ever again but said that she would be okay with them living somewhere else. Â They have stayed with various people ranging from aunties who sell local brew out of their home to the local witch doctor just down from our church. Â Whenever Atim goes to stay elsewhere her mom finds her and shows up drunk to beat her and cause trouble for the host family. Â
We brought this problem to our church body and asked them to pray about taking one or both of these kids in. Â I kept thinking, "Maybe I should just take Atim in here." But everytime I prayed about it I felt like I should wait. Â Not easy to do when you know a child is being abused and neglected. Â It is all too easy for us to swoop in as the foreigners and take control of the situation. Â We have more funds available and we are a stable environment. Â But in this case I did wait. Â And a solution presented it itself in the form of two young men.
Beswerii ( pronounced Base-well or B-dubs for short) and Bolton are two young men in our church. Â They love Jesus and love helping other people. Â B-dubs is our interpreter and Bolton is Dan's personal assistant. Â Both of them are being discipled and groomed for leadership by Dan. Â These two single guys were offered a room for rent in our church building if they'd consider taking in this little boy Ronnie. Â Without hesitating they agreed. Â We were thrilled! Â One kid had a place to live with two godly young men taking care of him. Â
There have been many jokes going around Sojourn amongst the staff about Bolton being the "mom" and B-dubs being the "dad", mostly because Bolton's hair is longer. Â All joking aside though, these two have stepped up and taken this broken little guy into their care. Â I watched them put him to bed during our Friday night service last week. Â I watched B-dubs pick him up and move him to a proper seat with the other kids this Sunday just like a father would. Â I watched Bolton rush out to find out where his mom was taking him during our church service with concern in his eyes. Â
Bolton told us that B-dubs was bathing Ronnie the other night and kind of reassuring him saying, "We know you are scared, and we are scared too but we want to take care of you...". Â Seriously? Â A 20 something young man having such compassion and care for a toddler? Â Amazing to me. Â They all three share a room the size of a closet without any complaint. Â B-dubs built Ronnie a bed. Â I am almost brought to tears at the love these two guys are showing this sweet little boy. Â
So the sister ,Atim, still needed a place to stay last week. Â We were rejoicing that Ronnie was taken care of but who would step up and care for Atim? Â I was resigned to taking her even though it wasn't our first choice. Â But Rosalie told me that a sweet lady named Mama Ruth felt like she could take Atim. Â Mama Ruth has at least five kids living at home right now and a gambling husband who just took a second or third wife. Â Basically the guy is NOT a good dad or husband. Â But Mama Ruth is willing to add another mouth to feed, another child to love, another person to be responsible for to her already crowded and often chaotic house. Â
This is what I love about the Gospel! Â It does RADICAL things in people's hearts. Â Ugandans are generous people when it comes giving away the last of what they have. Â I complain about someone randomly stopping by when we are about to eat dinner. Â I whine when someone needs to borrow the equivalent of $5. Â I grumble when I have to chit chat longer than 10 minutes with a neighbor when I really want to be home focusing on my selfish needs. Â And I am ashamed when I think of the HUGE hearts these three people have. Â
I am humbled by their example. Â None of them have ideal situations, extra funds or tons of freetime. Â Yet they heard the call to serve another. Â And they are doing it. Â And we should all consider why we aren't. Â
I challenge all of you to think about how much you are willing to give to help someone else. Â How much would you sacrifice of your time, talent or treasure to serve people that God has placed in your path? Â It's not easy, it's not convenient and it's often exhausting. Â But tonight I know two little kids who don't have to worry about their drunk mom beating Â them, bring men home, or leaving them hungry. Â I know three amazing people who are filled with the love of God to the point of overflowing. Â And I am in awe. Â
Thank you Jesus for sharing these people with me. Â Thank you for challenging me with their faithfulness. Â Thank you for giving and giving and giving even when we give nothing and take everything. Â And thank you for Atim,Ronnie, Beswerii, Bolton and Mama Ruth.