This post has been started in my head a hundred times, usually in the middle of the night when the warm sheets and cool summer night air discourage me from getting up and actually writing anything down.
The delay has been both the comfort of my pillow AND how to address the subject matter in a way that doesn't make us all curl up in a ball at the depths of evil in our world.
Our newsletter is intended to keep our wonderfully committed and supportive sponsors, donors and encouragers in the know and updated on the recent past, present and future hopes of daily life at Chayah. Facebook posts are brief and current; prayer requests or antics of a young family to be celebrated.
SOME NEWS JUST DOESN'T FIT comfortably ANYWHERE
Within the reality of this very new ministry, born out of desperate circumstances, is a truth that the rescue and protection of children was created in the heart of God. Doing something can be just plain reactionary as we experienced in 2012. The questions for us were both "what can we possibly do?" and "how can we even imagine not doing...something?".
We've moved past the thrilling, frightening, humbling months of setting things up stateside. January 2013 contains memories of putting together a protective, stable home filled with every necessity, stocked with food. We got to welcome children, arriving with a variety of physical illnesses, emotional fears and their own wonder about the future. We have gotten to experience the sweetness of watching their lives even out through security, love, and a father in God himself. Perhaps we should be content, grateful and settle in to what should feel like success.
AND YET WE WRESTLE
because there is this thing called "all the rest" and we hear stories that instantly tear our thoughts from contentment to tears and the relief of doing something is quickly swamped by a grieving...and we wrestle... and the news is ugly and we are uncomfortable again because...
a young girl's life was taken at the direction of a witch doctor and her mutilated body was left just yards from the protective walls of Chayah. It's not the life itself he demanded, but enough of her that she could not survive it. Satan has wreaked havoc, stolen, destroyed and made promises he will never keep, to a desperate someone willing to do the unthinkable... and our kids are shaken and fearful...
and we wrestle and its uncomfortable
because sisters 11 and 13 are pregnant and its common... and at that age they should be playing jump rope not skipping over their childhoods. The 11 year-old is blind and in some ways if rape were the cause it would maybe be easier to stomach, as wretched as that would be. But instead they sold themselves for 40 cents because its all they have to sell and because their house is full of siblings already and their mother is now raising her grandchildren too and there... is... nothing. And because who can plan for a tomorrow when today is so desperate. Two more tiny lives will enter a home bulging against cow-dung walls... and a girl, not old enough to babysit in our families, will, in just a few months, suffer through and deliver a baby onto the red dirt floor of their home unless her own barely-adolescent frame refuses to cooperate with this taxing burden of motherhood called birth. And then what...
and we wrestle and it's uncomfortable
because girls disappear regularly headed off with who-knows-who, to a promise of a job as a house servant in the big capitol city of Kampala. Except that there are thousands of street children there who would take the paying job if there really was one. And when a couple of years later a 15 year old returns, pregnant and used up...well heads hang at the reality of broken promises and shame replaces ignorance. Motherhood will again drown childhood unless of course disease steals them both.
and we wrestle...and it's painful...
and this kind of news reaches all the way across our shared God-created-earth and it doesn't sit or fit well anywhere. And we are earnestly "ministry minded" and "God-changed" and have asked Him to" break our hearts with what breaks His" and so He does...
and we wrestle...and it's difficult to bear the knowing
But it is not without H O P E