south africa: i love you.

i don’t know what it is…what exact moment my heart decided that it loved africa. i’m pretty sure it wasn’t on the 8 hour flight to dakar, or the next 8 1/2 hour flight to jo-burg.or the 5 hour car drive we had to make after getting off the ridiculously long flight. maybe it was when Make-Peace greeted us with a hug off the van. maybe it was when we spent the weekend with julie in june. maybe it was the song the kids at Tshwaranang sang to us. maybe it was when i washed my raw chicken hands in chicken water. maybe it was when i had to dance, in front of people. maybe it was when we met ma’she. or visited Margaret at the AIDS Hospice. maybe it was when Madoda shared his testimony. maybe it was when rafeelia called me her love. or maybe i loved it before i even went. maybe i loved it even before i realized the possibility of going on this trip. and maybe, just maybe, i fell in love with the country and people once i got there. how do you explain love? you cant. so today, when rob mcdowell asked me how it went, all i could say was, how do you put what God does into words?…i could try and tell you it was great. but great doesn’t begin to explain the experience. i’ve tried all week to find a word or words to describe God’s movement there and in my heart…but i can’t. my heart grew exponentially for people of nations other than america and even more for south africa. when i find the right words i’ll share them. until then…

SA FACT:: 4.8 million people, or approximately 10.8 percent of South Africans over the age of 2, are now living with HIV/AIDS. [personal note: this is a decline…it used to be worse.]

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