Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Shadow of the Cross

2 Timothy 1:7 says, For God has not given us a spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind". 

As many of you know, we awoke last Monday morning to the fact that our house had been entered and robbed by someone while we were sleeping.  I wrote about some of the specifics in this previous blog post.  We were initially shaken, but chose not to allow a "spirit of fear" to change God's plans for us in Uganda.  We spent most of last week in Gulu, and used that time to use our "sound minds" to pray about and seek wise counsel on our situation.  Africa Renewal Ministries has been quite helpful in helping us through the scenario and they strongly recommended that we move to a more secure location.  We really liked our first apartment and our set up with the Gash Family.  We enjoyed the services that were provided, allowing us to not have to worry with house chores and laundry after we got home from busy days of medical clinics.  We enjoyed some of the "comforts of home" that we had with a pool, air conditioning and exercise facilities.  But even with all of that, our "sound minds" had a shift last week.

The great American philosopher, David Crowder, says in his song "Shadows", "When Darkness falls on us, we will not fear, we will remember.  When all seems lost, when we are thrown and we're tossed, we rest in Him, Shadow of the Cross."

Jez, our friend through African Renewal Ministries, arranged an appointment for us to look at an apartment that is next door to Wentz Medical Center in Gaba.  We toured the apartment on Monday, and were left with a positive impression.  The apartment is much more secure for several reasons.  It has a small compound with one main guy that is there everyday and is personally responsible for security.  There is no passing the buck to someone else.  He hands off to 2 armed security guards, when he leaves in the evenings.  These hired guards watch the compound, but have no access to the building.  To get into the building, you have to have a 5 digit code that is entered into a keypad.  There is a German Shepherd guard dog, Kapapalla, that roams the compound at night.  Rumor has it, that she does not even like computers, cash or cameras!  Our apartment is on the 4th floor, as opposed to the 1st floor that we had before.  A would-be robber, would have to scale a wall topped with razor wire, pass the guards and Kapapalla, then figure out some way to get up 4 stories on the outside of the building, then break through the retractable bars to get in our windows. 

We discussed the move with our family  and with the Gash family on Monday night.  Tuesday morning, we felt like it was best for us to move.  So we spent all day Tuesday moving our stuff and setting it up in the new apartment.  Moving was much less of an undertaking than it was in Duncan! 

We traded our "luxuries in life" for security.  We don't have AC, we don't have a pool, we don't have an exercise facility, and we bump into our neighborhood on dirt roads, but security trumped these things for us.  Don't get me wrong, this apartment is nice.  It has a great view of Lake Victoria, nice grounds, and everything is very new.  Our friends and family that are coming to visit us soon, will have a safe place to stay with us, but they may not like the thermostat!

Isn't this whole scenario a lot like life?  We get comfortable in our "luxuries of life" and some one comes to steal and destroy.  It is a reminder to us that we need to seek security in the cross, and not in these luxuries.  Many of our luxuries were gone in one evening, and then we chose to give up many others.  By security, I don't mean getting into our Sanctuaries (which means safe place) and just staying there with people that we are comfortable with.  I mean conforming our lives so that they fit in the shadow of the cross.  What God calls you to do may not feel safe or comfortable or luxurious, but there will be security there!

Thanks for your prayers and support.



  1. "Sound minds" make wise choices. a very wise man whom you chose to name your organization after told me several times....."if God didn't want you to think he would have put a behind(edit!) on both ends!" Security will help you rest and focus. Keeping your family safe and visiting family safe is important, they are some of my favorite people!! Dad

  2. I'm feeling much better about your safety, but not so much about the AC! I know you will rest better knowing Jill and the kids are safe and maybe climbing 4 flights of stairs several times a day will make up for the exercise room! Love to you all and I'm counting it down...only 7 weeks til we head your way!

  3. Your safety is important, as well as visitors and long term guests. God may reveal a whole different reason for putting you where you are now. See you in 5 weeks!

  4. So happy you're safe. Glad to know you're moving to a more secure location - even though there's no AC! :) Love you all.