Wednesday, March 26, 2008

I Get To Live This Life

It’s been a while since I last posted an entry. I’ve been back in Rwanda now for 3 months and it’s been a bit of a blur. It’s truly amazing how much I learn in just one day. I’m constantly soaking up knowledge, learning from trial and error, listening to the culture, learning from the wisdom of my colleagues and the women we serve, and having revelations and epiphanies almost daily. I’m reading a lot, which certainly adds to this experience. I love to learn and I’m doing a lot of it lately.

I just finished “Sex God” by Rob Bell. It’s amazing, to say the least, and it epitomizes the Ubuntu theory I’m speaking of in this blog. Yeah, it’s got a funny name, but I assure you there is very little about sex (in the physical sense) and very much about how we are to treat humanity, especially in regards to intimate relationships. It rocked my world and I bet it’ll rock yours.

I also just finished Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell. He has such a way of saying things so profoundly. I am continually amazed by his wisdom and understanding of the “church” and what it is really supposed to be. And to take it up a notch, I am about ¾ of the way through Shane Claiborne’sIrresistible Revolution”. That book is truly revolutionary. It’s not the bible, and it’s not the only truth, but it is no joke either. Shane is a master at breaking down the teachings of Jesus and how He really lived, and intended us to live. Suffice it to say, I am moved. Consequently, I’ve given away everything I can’t fit into about two backpacks, (not that I had a lot to start out with). I could go on and on about it, but I’d suggest just getting the book. It’s a quick and compelling read.

Things are intense here with Sisters of Rwanda, as always. We have to show a lot of “tough love” these days. We are not here to give handouts or to perpetuate poverty (which I consider to be one in the same). We are a training facility. And we are here to “teach them to fish”, so that they may “eat for a lifetime”. And it’s tough; maybe more on us than them. We just want to love them. But true love isn’t all roses. I know that if we truly love these women, it means we have to love them enough to teach them, not just to enable them.

As usual, we are out of money and struggling to secure the capital to even carry on with our income generation activities, but we are making it, somehow. And we have “crazy stuff” come at us daily. Emotions are high. We have a new country director (Ilea Dorsey) that is fresh out of two years working in Uganda and now having to adapt to a whole new culture here in Rwanda. But she is a trooper, and she’s part of what makes all of this work. She’s already part of the family, and we are fortunate to have her, as a leader, and as part of the family. You can check out her blog (she is an AMAZING writer) at .

We have presented the initial concept of Ubuntu Revolution to quite a few Rwandese since I’ve been back. To be honest, I anticipated quite a bit of resistance. But we got none. Everyone is ready for it. They want a revolution; one that brings them together and creates peace. So we are elated. Yes, elated. This is everything I’ve been working towards my whole life. Now it’s culminating in this revolution. It’s sort of my “labor of love”, but what is so amazing is that I’m not alone in it. Everyone is so supportive, and that’s what will make it work. This is about all of us.

I was riding on the back of a moto taxi the other day on my way to the office. I had my backpack on containing my “mobile office”, the sun was shining, just after a light rain, people were walking in the streets and I had just finished a stellar hour of kickboxing with two little street kids that I teach at my house every morning. I thought to myself, “you know, I don’t think I’d change anything in my life right now”. I couldn’t stop smiling. I’m here. I’m living my lifelong dream of justice for vulnerable women in Africa; starting a revolution of peace and equality. This is my destiny, my calling, my purpose, or whatever you want to label it. It’s what I was put on this earth to do and there’s nothing that could make me happier than knowing that I’m fulfilling that. I can’t believe I get to live this life.

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