Saturday, April 30, 2011

What A Momma Means

My Mom
Always there ~A protector ~A helper ~A comforter
~ An example of Christ~

Many people in Africa cannot say that.
Many adults still desire that kind of relationship.
Grown women still want a mom.

At the Hope House in Uganda something got me.
It was not the conditions of the way people live.
It was not the fact that many of these women have had to sell themselves to survive.

It was when Maureen was beaming as she introduced her mom to the group.

It was when two grown women introduced themselves
and ended with "and I want a mom".

Then there were the little ones without mommas

In Uganda half of the population are about 15 years old or younger.
There are 2 MILLION orphans, this means 2 MILLION kids have lost either a mother or a father. Unfortunately, many of them have lost both.

In Uganda only 2% of the population are 65 years old or older.
They have no older generation to pass down wisdom learned from a long life.

We met and loved on many orphans while in Uganda.

They are precious and though many of them needed and wanted material things,
their need for attention was much greater.

Even big boys need a momma.

I pray that God will speak this over them:

"As a mother comforts her child,
so will I comfort you;
and you will be comforted...."
Isaiah 66:13

Little boys need to be protected.

These little ones are loved and they know how to be big helpers.
They are in a good orphanage but yes it is just that; an orphanage.
They do not have a mommy or daddy.

I fell in love with the girl in the middle. She is so precious!
When I asked her how old she is she said, "I don't know".
She is a smart girl and she has a great education.
She has a safe place to live with great caregivers.
But she doesn't have a mom or dad to care for her
and she doesn't even know her age.

This was a great orphanage.
The kids here took a while to warm up to us.
They are bonded to their caregivers.

This was a much different picture than the first orphanage we visited.
The first one the kids would go to anyone as long as someone would touch them.
The first orphanage the mamas can get kind of mean.
The first orphanage was so hard for me that I told our group,
"I hate it and I don't want to go back".

Well guess what,


It is hard at that home.
I was uncomfortable.
I don't like getting yelled at by a momma.
I don't like seeing babies dying from something that could easily have been prevented.
I don't like seeing 53 little children age 3 and younger packed together every day of their lives.
I hate showing up and seeing a baby a couple of hours old and finding out he was just found in a pit latrine. He had maggots on his eyes and umbilical cord.


But I can do something.

“If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with
actions and in truth.” (NIV)

1 John 3:17-18

I can pray~I can give money~I can give time~I can share Christ's love

~I can share their stories so they aren't forgotten~

This Mother's Day

I can

~thank God for my mom~

~and I can pray that children will be united with the family God has designed for them~

"God sets the lonely in families..."

Psalm 66:6

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Home with the Kiddos & my Wife in Uganda

Okay, so since the other Idaho guy (not naming names) who’s wife is in Uganda with my wife has been posting Uganda updates every day, I figured I better get in on the action and do a post too. Not sayin I’m competitive.. I mean, who’s keeping track right?

Anywho, we here at the Scheel residence are fairing okay (translated as surviving). Hold on to that thought; I need to go get another cup of coffee. Okay, I am back with my ‘Go Juice.’ This should keep me going through the evening round of diaper changes, jimmies.. I mean jammies (must be getting the jitters), meds, tube feeding, teeth brushing, flying Gavin around like a dragon, a few stories, a few rounds of calming the cries and then hopefully silence sometime before midnight. Not that I am complaining or anything or that I did not have respect for my wife before the Uganda mission trip but rather it has been AMPLIFIED! So, just for the record, my hat is off to my wife and her endless duties that she faithfully does on a daily basis. Her serving God shines through in her devotion to the family and I believe is now shining through in service to her new found extended family in Uganda along with the other ladies working side by side. It sounds like they have really bonded over the last seven days in pretty amazing ways.

Some of the experiences that have been trickling in are almost beyond words as it is truly hard for us Americans to even comprehend. Images on TV or the Internet are one thing in which one can still be somewhat detached. After all, do people really live this way in our current day? It’s hard for many of us (talking about myself here) to comprehend and I also think it is hard for us to deal with. I mean if the reality is that people (kids in this case) are truly sleeping in piles of trash with only a ragged shirt to call their own, have no mom or dad, fight to get a bowl of who knows what…. and consequently are dying of starvation or disease… yes, if this is truly the reality for many in the world that we live in, then it becomes not only convicting but truly life changing. For we know the heart of Jesus is for us to look after “the least of these” and “the widow and the orphan.” And last I checked, Jesus did not mean to only take care of the ones within our own nation and by the way don’t worry about the others outside your borders. Haven’t found that one in the Bible. If it were, we Gentiles would still be lost without a savior.

So, yes, I have been convicted just by hanging out here at the home front and hearing updates from Stacy over the phone and following the blog updates from the ladies serving in Uganda. Not to make any concrete statement here, but I believe this is only the beginning for us and many others. We truly need to be world changers for Christ and yes that means being risk takers and possibly even going into harms way. I am believing, now more than ever, that Jesus did not call us to necessarily live secure safe lives but rather to be bold in his name. I think one of the deceptions that we have unintentionally wrapped around ourselves is the idea of the health and wealth (insert comfort and security) Christianity to which I do not believe is necessarily biblical. Don’t get me wrong here; I am by know means trying to be judgmental or claim to be a theologian, pastor or an expert on these matters but rather just trying to personally be in-line and at least willing to continue on this path with Jesus. After all, he did create us all uniquely to serve him in unique ways. There just really is no better place to be than in his will.

Okay, so that is a lot more than I was intending to write about. Just have a lot on my heart and the coffee must be kicking in. So, to wrap it up, it is humbling to be in his service to whatever extent that might be and it is also very troubling in grappling with the realities of the least of these that are in this world desperately crying for our help.

That’s it for now.