This weekend we have come to the part of our orientation program known as Community Stay. It means that from Friday through to Monday we will be staying out in the community with a family – either an orphan headed household or with a Gogo who is caring for orphans.
For the 4 days and 3 nights we will do what they do. We will get a glimpse of what it is like to walk in their shoes. We will try to understand just some of the challenges they experience on a daily basis, we will muddle through language and communication challenges to hopefully form a deep relationship connection. It is an absolute privilege to be able to stay with and share in the life of one of these families. Daily tasks may include cleaning the house, sweeping the yard, collecting water, cooking meals and going to church with the family on Sunday to name a few things. There may even be a live chicken that is part of our food for the weekend….! (As refrigeration can be problematic or not available, live chickens can the fresher option (slightly freaking out!)).
Today we are preparing/packing/food shopping for the weekend and at 11:30am tomorrow we will make the 2 hour drive out to the community we are staying in (at which point I will be off the air for 4 days) but look forward to sharing with you all about my experiences when I am back next week 🙂
The book of James is framing up our weekend. Specifically reflecting on James 1:27
“External religious worship [religion as it is expressed in outward acts] that is pure and unblemished in the sight of God the Father is this: to visit and help and care for the orphans and widows in their affliction and need, and to keep oneself unspotted and uncontaminated from the world.” AMP
Or from the NLT
“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.”
If you would like to pray specifically for this weekend; I would ask you to pray for the following:
- That we will be able to overcome barriers; whether practical language/communication barriers or emotional barriers/walls that we can put up.
- That I will be open to experience and see what God would have me see this weekend, to be quick to listen and slow to speak, to really try to understand and get a real glimpse into the lives of those I am staying with / to learn and be teachable in all situations
- That I can share the love of Christ with the household I am staying with
- Safety for us, and also for the Children we will be staying with
- For no rodents 🙂 (I am fine to cope with all manner of insects / cockroaches / snakes / spiders / even frogs… just not rodents while I am sleeping!)