I’LL NEVER BE THE SAME
I have given presentations at the hospital and my church here in Laramie about this trip. I have also talked with many, many people about it.
Easily, the most frequently asked question is, “Will you go back?”
I’ve been back here for over a month now. I’ve had a little time to think.
Here are some of the things I got from the trip:
I got to meet Henry Farrar. He is a man who has lived “… in as much as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to Me…” for his whole life. If I were writing the chapter in Hebrews about the heroes of faith, I would put him in it.
I met and worked with many other noble and selfless people. Young to old. I count it an honor and a blessing to have known them all. I’m sad that I will probably not see most of them again.
I saw awesome poverty and ignorance. I believe every first world person should live in the third world for a few days. I took pictures of people, even old people, and left their image on my digital camera and showed it to them. They would get a puzzled look on their faces, then after a minute or two would start laughing uncontrollably. It took them a little while to figure out that they were seeing an image of themselves. They had no idea what they looked like. They had never seen an image of themselves, even in a mirror. I gave colored pencils and paper to children and their mother asked me how to work the pencil. They didn’t know how to operate a pencil! I saw little children eating the raw pulp off of corn cobs that had already had the corn scraped off to feed me. I knew there were poor people, but I didn’t know how sad and hopeless things can be.
Laura and I have something that not one in a million fathers and daughters have. We really did struggle together for the Kingdom. You get close when you do that. Sometimes we were tired. Sometimes we were hungry. Sometimes we were afraid. When we talk, we both say that there’s no way we can begin to share our experience. “They just don’t know, Dad,” Laura will say. Sometimes we just sigh and shake our heads even when we talk to each other. She’s an angel.
I learned just a little about sacrifice. Just a little, not much.
After I had several conversations with Henry before the trip, he said to me, “Al, you are never going to be the same. This is going to get into your blood.”
For a while I have been thinking about ways to serve after my family matured. I am very happy to have found this one.
The Nigerian people are some of the most beautiful people in the world. They happen to be little black people. They are also some of the most unfortunate. It was an honor to help a little.
The last day this man came in..
with this sign.
Nigeria was a soul rattling and heart changing experience.
I guess Henry was right.
“Will I go back?”
How could I not?