Last week we talked about how we are not doormats. This week I would like to look at the other side of the coin. I hear reports of women doing terrible, vulgar things these days in the name of feminism and women’s empowerment. This grieves my heart deeply, because these things actually cause us to go backward and not forward. It actually feels to me like people have lost their minds!Read More
Who are we?
Women are not created to rule the home, but to build it. We are not created to be stepped on, abused, or mistreated. (Neither are we called to step on, abuse, or mistreat anyone else. I will talk more about that part next week.)
Women of God are clothed with Strength and Dignity- this is how the Bible describes a virtuous woman.Read More
Today more than ever there is a lot of confusion as to who we are called to be as women. Where is our value found? What is our standing in our homes? As I see the contrast between life in Kitgum and life in the US, I see the gap ever widening. And both perspectives fall terribly short of what God says about who I am and what my place is in this world. It is not our culture, a march, or a set of laws that define who we are. It is God. Regardless of the circumstances, that does not change. From the woman in a posh corner office, to the old illiterate widow sleeping on the floor of her mud hut - our core value is not found in what we do, where we live, or the cultural norms.Read More
I have walked these dirt roads for years now. I have taken several children in along the way for periods of time. Each time they left, it was very hard as it felt like a piece of my heart was going away. When I first came to Uganda, it was because of the children who were running in fear for their lives from a rebel group. It was to hug them, love them, and show them Jesus. This has morphed and blossomed over the years, but that heart is something that God placed within me and that has remained: to minister to children and to love them. I just didn’t know how it would come to fruition.Read More
One of the biggest challenges in my life is my tongue. Sometimes I let it carry me away and get me into trouble. If I’m honest - there are many words that have escaped my lips that shouldn’t have. This especially seems to happen in my marriage. If I am totally open and honest with you, I must admit that too many times I use my words to tear my husband down instead of building him up. This is an area where I am desperate for God’s intervention, and I pray daily to speak words of life and encouragement to him and to everyone else around me.Read More
Yesterday we met an amazing pastor named Sunday. Sunday has a heart to reach the people in remote villages where there are no churches. In just over a year, God has used him to plant seventeen churches. And he isn’t done yet. We met him through my friend Lois. It’s beautiful to see a local man doing this type of work. We had the privilege of meeting the leaders from these churches yesterday and holding a leadership training. People came from these far villages to gather together for encouragement in the Word. They are hungry to learn more so that they can better serve where God has placed them. Some of them are young believers themselves, and so there is much need for training and equipping.Read More
“Marriage is a great institution, if you like institutions.”
I was working in a medical clinic years ago, and these were the comical words of my friend who was older and had been married for some time. It was funny, but it was also sad. She really believed the joke she was saying. And she’s not alone.
These days more than ever, marriage is under attack. Especially biblical marriage. This is not news to anyone, particularly those who live in the US and other countries where the god of this age and popular opinion stand in stark contrast to what the Word of God teaches. Those who try to honor God face many challenges. Marriage is hard work, and it’s getting harder and harder as we are pressing against the tide of this world.Read More
On Monday I sat with a woman named Betty before the Bible study. She was attacked on the road several weeks ago by a family who wants her husband to take their daughter as another wife. Betty didn’t want her husband taking other wives (imagine that!), and thus the attack. Six people beat her mercilessly and she was unable to move around for about a week. I prayed with her and encouraged her to make sure her and her three children are safe. Thankfully, the clan elders are stepping in and trying to resolve the matter. (This is the village justice system.)Read More
This week my life flashed before my eyes (well, that may be a little bit dramatic… it was scary, though.)
The fear was not from a major ministry event, a cultural issue, or something relational. It was because of rats. You see, I’m not a huge fan of the rodents. Quite the opposite. They scare me (a lot).Read More
Last week I shared with a group of women about salvation and Jesus. These ladies are lifelong Catholics. They also happen to be inmates in the prison. You see, the normal group of women (those who know their own hopelessness and long to come to the Lord, and those who have surrendered their lives to Him) were all out working in the field. Those few who remained behind were so secure in religion without transformation that they couldn’t and wouldn’t hear the Good News that Jesus came to set them free.Read More
When you got saved, I bet it was unexpected. I bet you were going about your life, doing what you do, and Jesus stepped into your world, revealed His love and power, and changed the whole course of your life.Read More
This week the freedom bells rang in ears and hearts in America, as Independence Day was celebrated. Here in Uganda, it was just another Tuesday. But it caused me to pause and thank God for everything He has blessed me with, including the heritage of freedom that was afforded to me simply because of my citizenship.Read More
I once knew a carpenter named Geoffrey. He was a good guy. He struggled with alcohol, though. He had a wife and several children. They were from South Sudan but had come down to make a life for themselves in Kitgum. He helped me whenever we needed something built. We developed a relationship and so he wouldn’t cheat me like some others did because of my skin color and speech. We shared with Geoffrey about the Lord many times, but he was hesitant. One day he did come to say he wanted to follow Jesus, and we were delighted. Shortly after that we had a team come.Read More
As we continue this topic of short-term missions, I hope you don’t think I’m being too harsh. If you didn’t before, you may when you read the next point. Please know that it’s all out of love. Please read with an open heart and understand that we are all still learning, growing, and being conformed more into the image of Christ. If you missed the last two posts, please check them out, as this is a continuation of the others.Read More
Last week we began this topic by looking at the first thing any of us must do before getting into ministry or mission work- check our hearts. If you didn’t read it, I would encourage you to check it out here: http://www.ericambasan.com/blog/short-term-mission-check-your-heart .
This week we move on to the next two points- learn from the mistakes and successes of others who have gone before. The operative word here is learn. It takes humility to recognize that you don’t know everything.Read More
So you want to go on a short-term missions trip. That’s awesome!
As someone who has lived on the field for quite a few years now, I appreciate short-term trips because that is how it all began for me. I see the value of them. But I also see the destruction that short term mission’s trips can bring. Really, you could be a great blessing where you go; or you can undo years of hard work. Wanna know how? Read on!Read More
As they say, laughter is good medicine.
Early in my missionary journey, I realized how overwhelming grief can be. My heart was broken on so many levels so often. Living in a land torn apart by war, poverty, HIV, and innocent orphans suffering, it was hard not to despair. It seemed the only two options were to develop a hard heart or to fall to pieces.
Thankfully, God showed me that there was a third option. I realized that I needed to find the joy in the darkness, to look for the glimmers of hope and signs of God’s faithfulness and restoration. And furthermore, I needed to laugh.Read More
Things will frustrate and confuse us; and in those times we need to remember WHY we do it. We already discussed two weeks ago that we do it in order to win some to salvation, but I’d like to take it a little bit deeper.Read More
Jesus called men and women from every social stratum - from the slums to the palaces - to come and follow Him. He ate with them, dwelled with them, and loved them. He still does this, and He desires to do that through our lives.Read More
Sometimes things are “lost in translation”, as they say.
I have learned this over the years, though I feel as if I have not scratched the surface of truly grasping the culture here in Northern Uganda.
For example, within the first few days of my arrival in Northern Uganda, the man whom I was working with told me that we should go visit his brother who needed encouragement. He said the brother lived very close and we could easily walk there.Read More