Housewives of South Africa?
I remember at one point last year our pastor mentioned that as he picked his mom up from the airport he saw an American camera crew. My teammates and I were trying to figure out who it was that would film in Port Elizabeth, well I finally figured it out a few weeks ago, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta.” I’m watching it tonight at the women went to Jerusalem Ministries where me and my teammates helped with the kids! One of the men we worked with there was actually on the show for a few minutes!
It is interesting watching it because, not to be judgmental, but they are a bit ignorant in their experience there. It’s interesting seeing them interacting with the Xhosa culture that they don’t understand, and rather than ask question to understand it they just make an irrelevant response. I’m no expert on the Xhosa culture, but I learned a bit in my few months there (from asking questions), and I can clearly see the disconnect. Especially when they are talking with a sangoma.
Definitely makes me miss South Africa even more!
(You can’t see his face, but he man in the white shirt was on the show. His name is Sandile, he gave them a tour of the museum inside. If you watch it you can see the bright painting in the background when they are interacting with the sangoma.)
I left my heart is South Africa
I was warned well before I left on a plane to begin my year in South Africa that it would forever change me. I was warned that I would fall in love with the beautiful country and it would steal a part of my heart. I was warned long before returning to a life back in my home country, a life back in America, that the transition would be difficult. I was prepared for a difficult re-entry process. With all this preparation and foreknowledge, I thought I was good. I thought that I could handle leaving South Africa and returning to the US. And yet, I still had no idea what I was getting in to.
Plenty of people have experienced this transition; returning from a wonderful time abroad, after making a life and friends and family in a place that used to seem strange. Now coming home to a place where you once had a life, filled with friends and family, that at one time was all you knew. It is odd that something that was once so familiar can now be the life that feels so strange.
My memories of South Africa feel so alive, its as if I can close my eyes and actually be there. It is as if I’m living in a parallel universe, like only part of me is here in California and the other part of me - the part that is really living - is in South Africa. In some ways I feel like a shell, empty, because my heart is still living half-way across the globe.
I am so thankful for my time there. I miss my life there. I miss living with such purpose, with complete dependence on God. I miss spending time with my team, people who saw me in my worst of times and yet loved me. People who watch God transform my heart as He transformed theirs as well. People who I will have a forever connection with because our experience together was one nobody will fully understand. I miss the friends I made, who were completely different than me in so many ways except the one that mattered. They grew up in a completely different life: they are younger, or they are older, they don’t have a father, or they are a mother, they are black, or they are white. And yet, we are all connected by our Father’s love. I learned so much from each of them. Their generosity, their openness and hospitality. Their love for some crazy American who decided to move to South Africa for a year.
I left my heart in South Africa.
and I’m back!
I apologize my blog has been a bit MIA lately! Just wanted to fill you all in that I’m back in the US and down in SoCal for some debriefing with the team and a few CRU staff members. I’m super thankful for this time together as a team to process all that we have experienced, to celebrate all that God has done, and to finish well together with some last fun memories together.
Thank you for your faithfulness to give and pray for this ministry, when I get back to the Sacramento area I’m hoping to see you all and catch up on the last year.