The Journey of Transformation

God has been revealing things to me about my life as I’ve been sitting through these classes the last 3 weeks. Yes, it’s been 3 weeks already! In some ways it seems so long ago that we left Musana Camp. And yet in looking back over these 3 weeks, time has moved rather quickly.

As much as I try not to look at the physical limitations of time, that is how I as a human being measure my very existence. How I long for the day when time will be no more! But even thinking of that, I can hardly wrap my mind around that mere thought.

But back to the issue at hand…… the classes…… measuring time……

I am 3 weeks into a 20 week course. Yippee! Part of me rejoices in being finished with 15% of my time here at Kasana. Or maybe better put- 15% of my time away from Musana Camp! The journey is off to a great start though. And it has been challenging and revealing of my personal story and walk with God.

As I sit through the teaching, I think about the incredible privilege this is and wish that each of you could experience it. I can’t begin to describe all that this course covers, but at this point we are discussing a lot of African worldview. What that means to me, is that all of these “strange” things and ideas that I’ve observed and learned about Ugandans (or Africans) in the past year and a half, now has a basis. I now see where they are coming from and why they do and believe certain things. I put the word strange in quotes because to the western world, they are strange, odd, and unusual.

There are two different types of human worldview- the spiritual and the physical. As a westerner, I base my worldview on the physical realm but the African worldview is spirit based. Both of these are fallen worldviews but apart from Christ and a salvation experience, we find ourselves in one of these categories. Everything about African worldview goes back to the spirits and the witchdoctors. Appeasing the spirits of the dead. (I wish had the time and the patience to explain this more fully.) In a nutshell, the one with the knowledge holds the power. You want to appease the dead, the witchdoctor can tell you what to do. You have a problem, the witchdoctor has the answer, and you gratefully “pay” him/her for the answer or remedy. The witchdoctor has the authority and you don’t question authority. They say it, you do it! Sounds evil to the very core, something I would never do! Or do I?

Today we talked of prayer. What is the first aspect of prayer that I think about? For me, and I suspect I’m not alone in this, it is “Ask”. I even have scripture to back it up. “Ask and it shall be given to you, seek and ye shall find.” And what do I normally ask for? Things I need. Usually selfish physical items or requests. But even the word “selfish” is way to revealing of my character and so I word it differently. Something that will make my life better and my survival easier. (That sounds better!) So eventually my need for material things becomes greater than my need for God. A beautiful and challenging quote from class today- “Your motivation for prayer should be God Himself and NOT the things that He (God) does for you.” Wow!!

Now if my focus in prayer is on my needs, my relationship with God is based on what He can do for me. My prayer is empty because I am always seeking my will instead of what God wants for me. This way of praying actually disconnects me from God. If God doesn’t come through for me, then I either reject Him or I seek a way to appease Him. I think maybe I don’t read my Bible enough….. maybe I don’t pray long enough….. maybe I don’t pray the right way….. maybe I should fast once a week/month….. maybe I need to be a better person. And the list goes on. I am acting in the same way as the African going to the witchdoctor! I am coming to God to get what I want. As soon as I get what I want, I am done with God. If I don’t get what I want, I think what have I done wrong? Wow! Provoking, piercing, revealing….

If God never gave you a single thing that you asked for, would you still passionately pursue Him?! My purpose for prayer should be my need for God! The Christian life is not about me but it’s ALL about Him!

And I’ll leave you with this thought provoking quote from class. “Jesus never called people to Himself. He was always stepping aside so they could see the Father. If my goal is for God to be known and understood, and His kingdom to come; then I need to step aside so the Father can be revealed.” Praise God, He doesn’t need me and could do a much better job without me; yet He chooses to work through me, despite ME!