Tag Archives: people

Your Red Dirt Has Forever Stained my Heart

If you dig down deep inside of yourself and find a desire to come to Africa,

Please do.

The red dirt will stain your feet.

The people will grip you in such a way that you will be forever changed.

But, I don’t want to sugar coat anything.

There will be days that you’ll cry,

Feel inadequate,

Used,

Exhausted ,

And just in dire need of an honest to goodness hamburger with real beef.

But, at the end of the day chances are you’ll experience life at such a different level that you won’t want to ever return to “normal.”

You’ll see joy in the midst of poverty.

True, deep joy.

Courage in the face of daunting circumstances.

Community in a world full of selfishness.

Yes, the giraffes walking against sun tinted plains will stir your heart, but what will really change you is,

The people you encounter.

The stories that break your heart.

The people with nothing who welcome you ready to share everything that they have with you.

 

Bring a scarf, a jacket, leggings, whatever  you need to stay warm because the African sun doesn’t always shine.

When it goes down for the night the air will chill your bones.

 

Learn to love the rainy season.

Even when flood waters block you in and force you to wade through muddy, make shift streams.

Learn to love the sound of rain dancing on a tin roof.

 

People will call you “brother,” “sister,” ‘auntie,” “mama.”

They will help you when you’ve lost your way and try to sell you everything from bananas to peanuts.

 

The languages that at first sound like music will become a complete puzzle often leaving you tongue tied and

happy to sound like a two year old as long as you are able to communicate.

But, try.

Try to break the language puzzle.

Learn some phrases and be OK with not being able to say everything perfectly.

People will love you for trying.

 

It will change your very soul in a beautifully painful way.

So if you can.

If you want to experience a world of contrast and beauty then come.

Africa is waiting.

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Filed under Contemplations, Kenya, Travel

Here’s to Love

There are plenty of blogs floating around the cyber world lamenting the state of being single on Valentine’s Day, and I’ve seen enough “I have the best husband in the word” facebook posts to make me question just how many best husbands can live on a single planet. To me both the “Woe is me, I can’t get a date” group and the “look everyone and be jealous” group seem a tad self focused and well, a little insecure. If you’re really so in love please get off facebook and spend sometime with your man, and if you want a date so badly why not try picking up the phone and asking someone out. I don’t want this post to be a rant, so I’ll stop there. What I do want to say is love is beautiful and painful. It’s often messy and usually quite unexplainable which is no surprise seeing as people are involved. The idea that meeting the right person will fix all your problems is stupid. I’m not saying that relationships are a bad thing, I’m just saying that people are flawed and no one person can (or should) be expected to meet your every emotional, physical, and spiritual need. Meeting the right person does not guarantee some kind of never ending marital bliss. Look at the Old Testament story of Isaac and Rebekah. When Abraham’s servant went searching for a wife for Isaac he prayed that God would lead him to the perfect girl. And God did. Rebekah was beautiful, she thought about others, she passed the test the servant set to find just the right girl, and she was willing to leave her family to become Isaac’s wife. Clearly she was the one. But while Isaac loved Rebekah and she is said to have been a comfort and joy to him, it is interesting to note that years down the road Isaac lied about being married to Rebekah in order to protect himself. In doing so he put his beloved in danger. Rebekah later turned on her husband encouraging her favorite son Jacob to trick his father into giving him the family blessing as opposed to his older brother Esau who was his father’s favorite. True love to the end right? Yeah, not so much. The point is we’re all messed up. No relationship is going to be perfect because no two people are perfect. Marriage is a wonderful thing but, it’s hard work that takes a whole lot of commitment and a whole lot of selflessness. But that’s what love is right? Putting someone above yourself and caring more about their needs and feelings then your own. So here’s to love on this day after Valentine’s Day. Go out and care about someone imperfect.

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Filed under Contemplations