Friday, October 21, 2016

“Don't despise those little things you can do well; they contain tiny miracles that can amaze you and you will change the world. Be a world changer in your own way! We look up to you!” ― Israelmore Ayivor



The problem with pity parties is that sometimes you get uninvited guests that destroy the whole mood of the thing.  I was deeply immersed in a pity party of my own this morning, believing that I was doing nothing to help others and just focusing solely on myself when I was interrupted by the laughter of several small children—orphans that attend our preschool here.  They were having a grand time, feeling loved, fed, and important on this very day.  It reminded me that our preschool is in its sixth year and that we have fed and educated well over 200 orphans right here on our grounds—and we continue to do so.  We also have English classes in the afternoon and feed those kids, too.  The English classes are into their tenth year with almost 200 graduates who have all passed their English tests to get into secondary school.  Just because I am sitting around feeling sorry for myself because of all my health problems, it doesn’t mean that the work we have done and are continuing to do counts for nothing.  Over 10,000 people have clean, safe drinking water thanks to the over 500 biosand filters we have made and placed.  Okay, so that only works out to about one a week—still, lots of people have nothing to fear from cholera or dysentery because of what’s been done here at Maisha Na Maji.  Yes, growth in the church has slowed down, but we have still grown from about 400 members to over 4,000 in ten years and are still adding about two churches a year.  The 500 people I have personally baptized are still active Christians even if I never see them any more.  The three scholarship students in the Teacher’s College will graduate next May and bring the total to almost 70 Christian teachers that were too poor to pay for their education who are themselves teaching and touching hundreds, perhaps thousands of other students.  That’s a good thing that is continuing without needing my daily, weekly, or even monthly involvement, but it is a good thing.  There are at least four villages that have access to well water that used to have to walk almost ten kilometers every day to get water, and now, it is less than one kilometer from three villages and in the center of another one.  We never see those wells or those people pumping water but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening.  There are now seven preschools with Montessori method trained teachers that Karen has trained right here at Maisha Na Maji.  I don’t do any of the training, but if I wasn’t here, Karen wouldn’t be here either—so, in a way, that’s another good thing that’s happened because we were here.  Even now, Karen is designing and making uniforms for the Santa Caryn Academy here with zebra print shirts for the boys and skirts for the girls.  Shaban is in Mwanza with John today and while John is working on solar projects, Shaban is finding hat material for Karen’s uniforms.  Our workers, too, wouldn’t be part of the middle class with children going to school and families eating well without our support.  
I don’t know about you, but I tend to discount or dismiss any good things I have done if I am not having to sweat and work to do them on a daily basis.  Happily, God doesn’t keep track of how we follow Him with a stopwatch.  God is much more concerned with where your heart is in relation to helping others rather than with your business plan to accomplish His goals.  I shudder to think of how what I am doing would look in the hands of someone preparing pie charts and tables, but since the only one I really have to please is God, and since He is the only judge that counts, I guess I’ll be all right with my lack of daily effort.  When you add up all we’ve done over the years and what we are still doing, I think it’s more than enough.  I envy civil engineers who can step back and look at the bridge or giant dam they built and think, “I built that.”  All I can do is offer myself and my heart to God and hope that He uses my offering in the best way possible.  So, I have made my peace and ended my pity party.  Maybe you should too—if you’re inclined to be really critical of how little you think you’re doing.  God’s hands are the ones to be in, eh?

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