Sunday, August 24, 2008


Personally I (Terrill) have struggled in relating to our neighbors. Our home compound is big and equipped enough that I could easily spend all my time within our fences. Even when I spend only most of my time inside, the majority of people I see have come to get some thing or some favor from us. Dredging up some old feelings from my years in Tanzania, this situation of being sought in order to be exploited gives me a bad attitude at times. (Amber does a much better job at graciously dealing with our frequent guests.) Recently I decided that as a part of my language-learning efforts, I would try to get out more, get out in the nitty-gritty, dirty, sweaty, raw, and real world of the Karamojong. Not only to be in the environment that gave rise to their language originally, but to meet the people on their turf, to come to them in need of something (i.e. patience, instruction, hospitality). This has been eye-opening on a number of levels, but most importantly, God is giving me new eyes to see our neighbors, not as unwanted callers at our home, but as fellow humans struggling to find health and happiness in an often cruel world. And they in turn have revealed to me a side I don’t often see at our homestead, a side that acknowledges my profound neediness, which in so doing, returns to me my humanity.

1 comment:

nshrock said...

I can see how it would be so easy to become callous to people constantly asking for something, but by meeting them on their own ground and experiencing some of their daily lives I'm sure that can help bring some things into perspective. I hear this over and over from people who do any type of mission style work. We just had a group of kids go to a mission in inner city Columbus for a week and everyone of them said the same thing, that it's so easy to overlook and pass judgement on people until you get to know them and see what they actually deal with.

And don't let your human nature get you down, God uses things like this to help us grow.