I always have an intention of writing more here, and then a year passes….
It is the rainy season in Uganda. My flowers are loving it, and I am sure the farmers are too. But for those of us that are trying to run errands or get work done, the rain can be a real pain. Everything basically comes to a stand still until the rain passes. It completely disorganizes everything. The worse the storm, the longer the delays and chaos.
Yesterday, I was running all over town to see some of the women that make jewelry for us. They are on opposite sides of town, so I decided to take a boda (motorcycle taxi) to make it easier and quicker. There isn’t parking at one place and what would have been a 3-4 hour ordeal driving, was supposed to be 1 hour by boda, but the rain came…
It started with the sky getting darker. Then one drop. Then two. Very quickly, it became a serious downfall. We pulled over into a parking lot and took cover under the building’s verandah. But the rain kept increasing, and then the wind, and soon the verandah wasn’t offering much shelter. We were getting wet and cold.
The owners of the building saw what was happening, and offered us the protection and warmth of inside their shop. They gave me a chair and closed the doors. I was safe from the wind, rain, and coldness that comes with severe rainstorms here.
As I sat inside, waiting out the rain, it occurred to me where would we be without the kindness of others in our darkest moments, our darkest nights. They didn’t have to open their doors to us. To shelter us. To offer us protection. But they did. They saw the storm we were weathering outside, and offered us relief. Sometimes we see people’s storms. Sometimes we cannot, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t there.
It seems that as soon as you get on social media, or turn on the news these days, it is nothing but meanness and cruelty disguised as “truth”. There’s no kindness. No shelter. No relief. We cannot always understand other people’s storms, actually rarely can we, because they aren’t ours and everyone experiences things differently. But it isn’t our job to understand the storms. Agree with the storms. Judge the storms. Jesus calls us to help provide relief. To do justice. And you can argue with me that Jesus is the only one that saves, but I will argue back that here on Earth, if we are to be His hands and feet, how else are we supposed to do that other than providing relief from storms with the gifts that we were given by our Creator?
I sat in that building for over an hour, waiting on the rain to pass. Even once it did and we started our journey again, it wasn’t easy. The roads had flooded and we couldn’t see where we should pass. Again, it was the kindness of strangers, that knew the road, that showed us the way. We had to take a detour to get home, because our road floods and becomes impassable, and even the detour was a muddy, frightening mess. If it wasn’t for my boda driver being a great driver, and experienced, I was going to come home a muddy mess. If I was alone, I wouldn’t have made it.
We are all just trying to get home, on a road that sometimes is a muddy, frightening mess in need of kindness to show us the way.
Be well and be kind.