It’s hard to admit when you’re wrong, isn’t it?  In planning one of our trips to Uganda, I was wrong.  I thought that the people we hoped to serve needed a medical/dental clinic.  They needed us to bring US doctors and dentists to see them and provide free health care, even if for a day.   They needed to be treated for any number of ailments and we were just the people to do so.

on hearingExcept for that God didn’t bring any doctors to our mission trip team.  He didn’t provide a dentist.  He didn’t open the doors of service for us.  And we didn’t provide medical clinics.  Instead, God opened the opportunity for us to provide funds to a Ugandan clinic that was relatively new and trying to get the word out that they were able to diagnose and treat people.  You can read more about them here.  Our group purchased almost $1,000 worth of medicine for the clinic and in one day, the Ugandan doctors at the clinic treated a couple hundred patients.  But that’s not the miracle.  God used our relatively small offering to lift up that clinic which now regularly sees and treats more patients.  Our offering on the “failed” medical mission was used to grow and develop something that Ugandans were already doing.

I wonder, when I travel to developing countries, how much the words they hear – from us – impact their ability to move from being a developing country to a thriving, well-developed country.  In the US, children grow up believing “the sky’s the limit.”  And for many of them, it is.  The sky looks a little different in developing countries, and I wonder if that bears any relationship to how we speak to them and how we serve them.   “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger.”  James 1:19.

What if, instead of plopping down a program and hoping it will take off, we asked a social worker in Uganda, “What need is not being met?  How can we help you begin to dream about being part of the solution to that need?”  What if we empowered the people our hearts beat to serve to think about what they could do to meet that need, maybe with our assistance but certainly with their leading?  What if we spoke life into the dreams of people in developing countries instead of offering them our leftovers?

Pure & Faultless seeks to partner with passionate people in developing countries to work together to meet the needs of people in a grass roots, indigenous way.  We long to support the compassionate, the entrepreneurial, the dreamer, and the worker.   Join us!