I’ll let you in on a secret, I’ve known for a while that I would be going back to Uganda.
In the first week of my internship with Show Mercy International, God spoke to me and told me, “You won’t be done with this place after these three months.” At the time, I had no idea what that meant. Things continued to shift and each day it seemed He would reveal more of His plan and more of my heart for the people of Uganda. After about two months, I knew I would be coming back sometime later that year. My heart had become attached to that place like nothing I’ve ever experienced before. I couldn’t even try to stop it. And now, as dreams unfold and prophesies emerge, it is clear that I am moving to Uganda.
Since I left Uganda, the enemy has tried to discourage me. He’s tried to make God seem less present in America, like maybe God would forget about me here. But God is faithful, He proves that He hasn’t forgotten me by sending me sparkles on my hands when I pray and speaking to me through His word.
Just about a week after coming home I was feeling discouraged. I was having trouble seeing a way to get back there and I wondered out loud, “God could this really happen? Am I really going back to Uganda?”
At the time I was reading through Genesis and I sat down and picked up my bible. I started where I had left off the day before, Genesis 28:10. Here Jacob is traveling to Haran and he has a dream of a ladder stretching up to heaven. In verse 15 God tells him, “I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”
Man, I just about started to cry. Here I am, calling out to God, wondering if He’s with me, asking if He’s really going to send me back to the place I left my heart, I sit down to read His word and He tells me that He remembers His promises to me, He will bring me back to Uganda, and He is always with me.
So now, I had this promise. I knew I was going back to Uganda at some point. I also knew I had no job or anywhere to live but my parents’ house after the end of the summer, so I made my goal to return in the fall.
I had all these ideas buzzing around in my head of all these ways I would love for God to use me. I prayed every day since returning home that God would reveal His plans for me. I’m obedient to Him but I’m not superhuman-I wanted to know the plan! I prayed, God I will go, but what am I going to do there? Well, very rarely does God reveal all His plans at once. So I waited.
A few weeks later, I travelled to the Twin Cities to visit my good friend Patrice, who I met in Uganda. To say she has been a huge inspiration to me in the months that I’ve known her would be an understatement. I spent a weekend with her and her family and one evening we were discussing my return to Africa when her spirit told her to type “Teaching jobs in Uganda” into Google. We couldn’t help but notice a certain job opening that continued to come up first in the searches; an International School in the capital city of Kampala needed a Head of Music teacher. This job had an application deadline of May 31, just two weeks away.
At that time I had my heart set on doing some sort of full-time ministry when I went back to Uganda, because that is what I had done before. So I didn’t put much thought into the idea of the job.
In the following week I weighed my options, I could continue seeking full-time ministry opportunities, waiting for God to reveal His plans for me, or I could take initiative and see what else God had to offer. I decided it wouldn’t hurt to just inquire more about the position to see if it was something I was interested in.
Saturday May 22, I emailed the head teacher of the secondary school in Kampala asking more about the music program and duties this position would entail. He responded by forwarding my questions to the school’s Human Resources person, and promptly asked me to send my resume.
I sent it along and two days later he responded wanting to set up an interview. On May 29, I had a Skype interview (at 7 am) with the head secondary teacher and the current Head of Music teacher who is being promoted. In this interview many of my questions about the job were answered. I was told I would be contacted again in a few days with news.
Fifteen minutes later I checked my email to find I had been offered the job.
I thought, prayed, talked to Patrice, my roommates and my mom, took a deep breath and accepted the job that afternoon.
Man, when God wants something done, He sure moves quickly.
So, with all of that said, this August, I will be moving back to Uganda. On June 12th I signed a two year contract with Rainbow International School as the Head of Music Teacher at the secondary school (high school). I will be teaching several small classes. As the head of the department, I will also be in charge of the music budget and all instruments and department head over the several other music instructors.
I will have my own home on a compound with the other teachers that come from across the globe.
I will be teaching students from 60 different countries at the 22nd best school in all of Africa.
I will also be participating in volunteer work in the villages as much as possible.
And I am so excited.
A good friend of mine pointed out how amazing it is that within a week I went from having no idea at all of what God wanted to do with me, very little plans of how I would be spending my time when I returned to Uganda, to having the next two years planned out.
Our God is so faithful.
I had been very set on living as a missionary in Uganda, doing only ministry in the village. Yet here I am, taking a job in the city of Kampala, teaching music to high schoolers. They weren’t my plans, but His plans have been revealed.
In the days before my interview, it occurred to me that I couldn’t really expect God to immediately launch me into my ministry upon my return, especially when I had no solid vision of what He wanted me to do. I began to realize how perfectly this job would set me up for the future I know God has for me. I will be teaching at one of the best schools on the continent, learning skills I can eventually take to the village schools where a huge part of my heart is. I will be learning budgeting and managing skills that will be forever useful in whatever work God calls me to. And I will be building relationships with people from every corner of the world and every walk of life.
I really do believe God has a purpose for me in Uganda much bigger than I could hope to see now. That’s why I was so willing to go back there without a concrete plan.
Praise be to God who humbles himself to use us, His children for His glory. Who never forgets us for one second. Who never leaves us in the dark. Who prepares us before He sends us out. Thanks be to our Father who knows the desires of our hearts and wants us to turn those desires into passion and passion into action.
For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” -Jeremiah 29:11
“So do not fear, for I am with you; Do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” -Isaiah 41:10