We are both aware of God shaking us loose from our time here –and at times the shaking seems to really hurt. My work with the ladies has been ripped away and I find myself very hesitant to help in any other place around here. I am struggling to get my attitude about serving and loving and helping right: for some time I have been aware how absolutely amazing Jesus must be that He loved and gave Himself selflessly over and over again. So often I hold back from giving my all because it feels like I will be taken advantage of … again. Jesus just gave and gave, even though humanity seldom thanked Him, often rejected and despised Him. How far I am from that! I tend to give with so many strings attached that I get myself caught up in it all.
Anyway. We are both trusting God for the next step forward, which might entail following a personal dream just for fun for some months, but we will clarify when we have certainties.
We had planned for a wonderfully peaceful night away at Kingfisher Lodge on Friday night. We are physically and emotionally tired and needed some time out. Unfortunately this did not quite work out as planned: a loud group of travellers kept us awake until late and from early: we were not the happiest campers imaginable! We decided to leave earlier than first hoped and had some trouble getting ourselves, the driver and our vehicle united at the same time… another frustration.
We had a rather uneventful drive back to Mbale until about 20 km from home. Just as we were entering Budaka we saw a bit of commotion ahead and I looked up quickly from my engrossing cell-phone game at the sound of loud bangs just ahead. Deon told Jamal, our driver to stop immediately – he would have merrily driven into the fracas. After about 30 seconds of sussing out the situation Deon told Jamal to turn quickly and drive back in the direction we had come. We tried to see what was happening: It seemed like a policeman was firing shots from and AK47 into the streets leading off the main road. We heard shots from a different gun too at one stage. There were probably about 5 or 6 shots fired, and we had to travel this road to reach home. We sat for a while and asked some girls from that direction what was happening – they seemed to think we were crazy to be worried. Just another day in rural Uganda, for them!
We figured out it was safe to drive on after a short while and told Jamal to get ahead as quickly as possible. People stood gathered by the hundreds on the opposite side of the road, and we saw a group of men loading an injured lady onto a boda-boda (motorbike used for transport). Deon saw blood, but we did not stop to look too closely.
I read in today’s newspaper that there had been an incident with a boda-boda driver on Friday: he had been called to transport some people but had been killed by them. It seems that the tightly knit boda community went to seek justice from the police and it turned into a considerably violent outburst. The newspaper said it had gone on for 3 hours, with teargas and live shots fired. There was no mention made of injuries or other deaths.
This is not the first incident I have driven into with crazed boda-boda drivers. They seek revenge for the death of one of their own, even if the driver himself may be to blame. It seems like the way in which police deal with it is through riot prevention, in a forceful way.
We were very relieved to reach home safely, knowing that yet again God had kept us safe.
So … some shots of violence and hatred.
We also took these shots ourselves of some very pretty sights on Lake Vic where we stayed on Friday night. I far prefer our shots to the shots of police!