Focus: Uganda

What We Remember (Is 51:1-3)

It has been one year since we have been able to begin to work toward a vision that was given many years earlier for East Africa. As we look back to the rock from which all of this was hewn, we can really see how faithful God has been. It's hard to put into words what we know God is doing and has already done. Words on paper cannot do any justice to the look of hope on so many faces. Words cannot explain the joy that emanates from the hearts of so many women as they look toward the future. Truly, I believe, as Christ said in John 11:40, that we have seen the glory of God, his reflected nature in this particular region of the country, on the faces of these particular women. Together, then, we dream of the possibilities of the future!


As we headed to Uganda in April, we knew that this time would be special. We felt more like, as the scriptures refer to often, farmers, getting our first look at the fruit of our labors. Other people, in other fields, and in other times have waited, and waited, and waited many years to see such first-fruits. Hebrews 11 tells us that some died without seeing any fruit, but they died in faith. While we remember those people and are thankful for their examples, this was not the case this April; we saw with our physical eyes our first-fruits. Approximately 70 women attended the conference held in Nansana. These women came from many different parts of Uganda: places like, Nebbi, Lira, Apac, Mityana, Kabule, Mubende, Masaka, Ntungamo, and Kabale. We also had two women from the Congo. Amazing! Often, (throughout the long weekend) we could hardly stop the tears.

 

The women's attendance, you see, were the fruit of the year of travel and investment. We had visited their villages or towns and spoken to them of God’s love for them and their particular callings as His particular choice. We hoped that the time spent with them and the message spoken to them would ignite a spark in them. During the course of this past year, God had impressed on my heart Job 32:8; each one of these women had a spirit inside of her regardless of her condition, appearance, or seeming interest in what we had to say. We prayed for the breath of the Almighty to come and give each one understanding, understanding that would see beyond her particular circumstances and struggles. April was our first visible proof that God indeed was working!

It cost these women to make that journey to Nansana for the conference. To understand that cost I must tell you about their lives.  Many of them have children. The average Ugandan woman has six to seven children. Some of the women who came have as many as twelve children. Some are widows or have been deserted, often are young, single moms, or victims of polygamy. Additionally some are married to unbelieving or Moslem husbands. Their ages range from the late teens to the late 80's. What a great God we have that this message is the same no matter our ages. The conditions which many of them struggle to survive in are hard. We spent this part of the year speaking, sleeping, and eating in many of their one room huts and one to two room homes. In order to attend this conference, many would have obtain permission from their husbands, and/or find people to watch their children which would include taking over their daily duties of hand-washing clothes and cooking meals by fire, and/or find people to work in the fields while they were away.

 

For some, the greatest cost would be the financial. While visiting these ladies we had challenged them to ask God for the money to travel; we would then pay for their return trip. Most would have to come up with about $15 USD to reach us. Not much money to us, but about a half of month's worth of food for a family, and most of these women do not have jobs. Each would have to believe that God would provide that money, and they would have to desire to use the money God provided for the purpose of traveling to the conference. At the conference, many marveled at God's provision for them and gave testimonies to that effect; we marveled at each one’s desire to even come despite the tests and trials we were sure accompanied such a desire.

 

Thus far, we've only spoken of the women who traveled to the conference. We have not even mentioned the miracle of watching the women from the host church in Nansana. They took care of these travelers, and they did it in true Biblical fashion with God's heart, sacrificing themselves; they gave of their time, their homes, and their finances. We had put a challenge out to the women of Nansana to provide food for each traveler (we provided accommodation). So many women of the Nansana church, to their hurt, financially did so. But even more than that, they befriended each visitor throughout the four days.

And finally, we write of the sovereignty of God. The languages spoken at the conference were English and Luganda (which all of the men spoke and their literacy rate as a whole is much higher), yet the majority of the visiting women knew neither language. We were aware of this when we first asked them to come. Our prayer was that translators from each tribe would sit in sections with these ladies and translate the messages. Finding willing male or fluent female translators, at least one translator per language, would be a miracle as we had discovered in our earlier travels. Then, to have each translator come, on time, and be available to translate the entire four days was an astounding proposition to put before God, but God was faithful. He really was!  Our women's session was quite unique. We spoke a sentence in English and then waited while four translators stood in front of their small groups and translated that sentence. Of course, this was quite noisy, but we took our time, because it was imperative that these women would understand God's message to them: He had chosen them, He had formed them, He had separated them, and He had called them. Each life mattered to God, He made no mistake, and He had a particular purpose for each one of them. We spoke for about three and a half hours, and they drank in every word. At the end of the time, we answered questions and encouraged them to come, once again, in July for an entire month this time to be further taught. Our time with them further burdened and excited us.  “Brethren, pray for us.” (1 Thess. 5:25), and for this message to speed on (2 Thess. 3:1) to the women of East Africa.

We feel that we have just experienced the tip of the iceberg. Our aim and our end is that these Ugandan women would be taught and trained and then reach all of Uganda with this Finished Work message of God's love and call.

God bless us all,


La Tascha Brown
Founder


Our vision in 2010/2011:

•    This July we would be able to spend a concentrated amount of time with them teaching the Bible through translation. Many have never heard the Bible stories in their own languages. We will also begin teaching First Aid.
•    This fall we would travel to the many women wanting us to visit and teach them in Northern Uganda.
•    This winter we would begin work on building a clinic. This clinic would serve as a center for training women in basic hygiene, First Aid, and nursing.