I've been so very blessed here in Dibaya-Lubwe. I will miss the people here and would love to come back. The things I've seen and the people I've met have made an impact in my life. Never before had I seen so much death. Never before did I see children dying of hepatitis and jaundice! Never did I see so many doctors that don't know what they're doing and only see dollar signs with each sick person the comes in. Never before did I tear up as I was mobbed by children so excited to see "mama Kristine". Never before did I tear up because I was holding a dying child (dying with hep). Never before did I see blood all over a hospital floor from a mal-operation. Never before did I dance with half dressed village children, and laugh so hard. Never before did I wash my hair in the rain. Or teach Sunday school in Kikongo and lead women's bible study in Kikongo! Oh to hear the wails of the mourners, another lost in the river! Well I'm sure you get the idea. I have found that I am a very selfish, very spoiled, very imperfect person. I am very blessed and being here has taught me I have a greater purpose. I have a greater responsibility!
I love my orphan boys in Kinshasa and dirty Dibaya babies. And I will miss sitting in the hospital with my people singing in Kikongo.
I have learned what it's like to really trust God. I've learned what's it's like to say...God it's all you cause I can't do it! God it's all you cause you called me here and...what I'm about to do is dangerous or not safe but...it's a real battle and the war is hard and dark! And I see that in a very real way now. And no one back home knows how much I appreciate their prayers and love! No one knows how glad I am to hear "so and so asked how it's going and wanted me to tell you they are praying"!
January 1st...it was a good day! Several of our neighbors and church people came up to the "mission" and we enjoyed our time eating Congo food! Congo food is "fufu"(kinda like sour bread dough, it grows on you). "Ndunda" (a leafy green), "Nkombo", and a variety of meats.
After the meal we played "bis ball". That's how they pronounce base ball! Now in order to get a proper picture of the following game you should first know that the only game they understand is jungle ball (their version of soccer). So the game went a little like this;
Ok, all to the air strip (that's where we play ball). So now 20 of us are "ready" to play "bis ball" and the rest have abandoned us for the other side of the air strip to start a game of jungle ball! So first we have to help them put on the gloves! That's confusing business...I guess. Then next is putting everyone in their places. "Ok when The ball comes your way, catch it and try to make sure the person doesn't touch the base first" (simplified directions). "No papa David, don't run into the forest! It's not tag and running of the diamond isn't the point". After much coaxing and reassuring that runnin off the field into the forest wasn't part of the game, he reluctantly came "home". Next batter up to plate!! Papa Henry is his name. One strike! Two strikes! Third hit, whoooo he hit the ball. It was a good one I should add. And off to first base he goes...with the bat!! Now begins the process of explaining that he was supposed to leave the bat at home. So he throws it from first to home almost (when I say "almost" I mean about a foot) nailing the lady standing at home in the head! Next batter hits a good one and so papa Henry takes off to second base. But mama Germaine "guarding" second was literally guarding the base. Standing very firmly on the board we designated as second. Refusing to let papa Henry touch the base. "No this is my base and I'm not supposed to let anyone by". Not to mention the three people standing on third base insisting that they are running home. "No only one person on a base at a time" response..."no we are all here..see". Oh my!!! Well that's the short version of the very humerus game of bis ball!
We are in Kinshasa right now and unable to leave the mission compound because of the violence in the streets. Please pray that this situation would be resolved and that no more people would die needlessly.