April 15, 2008

Rearview Mirror

We'll be 'resettling' in Lubbock, near where we're both from. There was a country song a while ago about Lubbock that said "Happiness is Lubbock in my rearview mirror". Envokes happy thoughts, no? I've been thinking a lot of that idea as we pull ourselves out, piece by piece, from Kaabong. Kaabong in our rearview mirror... How does it look different? I've thought a lot of the mud walls of huts, so packed together, with a stick framework underneath. Has Kaabong become more a part of our hearts, mud packed around, than we realize? And once 'pulling' out has begun perhaps there will be some crumbling.
Here in Kampala I awoke last night with a start as the rain began pouring down simultaneously with the neighbors' shrieking house alarm going off. I was in a panic. Disoriented. My first thoughts were flying through the Kaabong checklist: is it gunfire? Is it a raid? What's going on?

How long will Kaabong linger in that way I wonder?

Leaving for me is laced with some guilt. We're ready to leave. We prayed about it for a very long time and for many reasons, we feel very confident and at peace with our move. But even with that being the case, it's hard to leave a place like kb without guilt. Feelings that you're abandoning people. Knowing that they have limited help or hope(of the worldly kind), when common and all too present threats occur. I never tried to make 'myself' anyone's hope. I'm far too imperfect and 'me' for that and mainly I know what real hope is to never try to mess with it. But somehow that guilt lingers... Maybe the greatest source of guilt is the joy at the thought of home. God prepared me for moving home, through my time in Africa, more than years in Europe ever could have. It's been seven years away from home. Now I long for not only family and friends- but simply HOME. Which is a good thing. I am so happy to go home, to a place where I don't have to worry about what dangers may have passed in the night for my friends. Where I don't have to worry about safety and road conditions in any other way than drunk drivers at holidays and bad weather conditions... And the guilt is the knowledge that people I love still have the more pressing worries of Kaabong life.

That's pretty open. Maybe too open. I know that guilt is not good and shouldn't be lingering. I have faith in our God who watches between us. I will leave the 'field' on the 'field'. However, I will remember my brothers and sisters I leave behind-where the battle and dangers of this life aren't softened by beauty and material blows- but rather by physical and obvious blows.

Tomorrow we'll be officially moved from Karamoja and I suppose my heart is mourning the loss of my friends there. Feeling the dirt falling away from what had been a firmly built home, as I pull pieces out.

Just reflecting and sharing.


Anonymous said...

Well said. I know you sentiments very well.

Martha Schmidt

Jennie said...

thanks for sharing, G. remember that your time was not in vain & your kindness and generosity in certain lives will continue to produce fruit, I truly believe that! Hope we can talk soon, missing you much this weekend! (by the way, when is the "Kaabong memoirs" book hitting the bookstores? can I get a first edition copy? I'm serious...)

Anonymous said...


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