Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Visit Part 2 - We Meet

When we got to the house, Iranzi was away playing with some friends, and we had some time to talk to his mom and meet one of his older brothers and his youngest brother. Iranzi has eight siblings, ages two to twenty-one! His father was at the market with his two older sisters, so we did not get to meet them. The mother was very kind, and we talked about our kids through an interpreter. The older brother was wearing a Wisconsin sweatshirt with a picture of a buck. We tried to explain that Wisconsin was sort of where we were from, but there was some confusion, and they thought that we owned a buck. I was glad that I had been able to go on another home visit with a friend the day before so that I had good questions ready, but when we got there, conversation was not difficult at all. It was customary for them to ask us what they could be praying for, for us, and in turn we would ask the same of them. I don't do that very often here at home, but since I've been back, if it is appropriate, I have been asking people if there is anything I can pray about for them. Should I be surprised that that question leads to meaningful conversation? Or that there is always something going on beyond the surface of things? After a while, Iranzi and a group of boys came down the hill. I could tell right away that sweet Iranzi was not used to being the center of attention. He is very serious and quiet. His mom was now in the same position I had been in earlier (see Visit Part One), and was sternly urging him to smile and say thank you! He seemed overwhelmed with the attention, so we decided to go inside the house to give them some small gifts. We had brought a bag of school supplies for each of the siblings, and a couple of other special things for Iranzi. We brought a hand powered flashlight for his father, and some lotions and other useful things for his mother. I had brought all of the gifts in a market bag, and also gave that to the mother... I think that was her favorite thing. We prayed together in the house, and I couldn't help but notice that her prayers were all about heaven. Maybe because I have so many conveniences here on earth, I don't think about heaven like she does, but her greatest prayer was that we would all get to heaven, and her greatest thanksgiving was that when we got there, we would be together. What a hope, what a promise. The other thing I noticed is that Iranzi has a hard time keeping his eyes closed when his mom prays long prayers too.

The mothers meet. Sara and Judith.

While waiting for Iranz, Sara and Judith swap kid stories.

All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel Mother. ~Abraham Lincoln

Kirby and Iranz: together at last.

Sara talks with Judith inside their home.

Children make you want to start life over. ~Muhammad Ali


  1. What a sweet post! I love that Kirby is so involved in this process with you. Our hope is to "do" missions as a family someday and let Cody (our son) see what's going on in other parts of the world. Thank you for sharing your heart and stories in the posts!

  2. What a great story! Isn't it crazy how we all have things in common, but we are all so different too?

    Your little friend is so handsome and looks so full of life. It was interesting to me to read that when his mom prays long prayers he has a hard time keeping his eyes closed. I guess boys will be boys where-ever they are. How precious.

    Thanks for sharing your journey with us. You truly are an inspiration.

  3. I love that she asked you what she could pray for and that praying for each other became your common ground. That feels like such a kingdom momemt...God providing something so powerful that you each can offer to one another. Beautiful.

  4. i am currently living in Musanze with my 2 boys. My husband works for a NGO in the states, but the work is here. We came as a family this summer, but the boys and I remained when my husband had to return to work stateside.

    Our kids often wonder where their daddy works, and this gives them the chance to really experience the country. I was excited to see your son with you and the journey you shared.

    Your honesty about the scraped knee on the mountainside made my eyes tear. Too often I have found that I just "need" them to pull it together for the sake of the moment, only to realize I need to sit, listen and experience the moment with them.

    Life in Rwanda is more than i expected. Good and bad, but mostly much more lonely and difficult. I have found that the words of the song you sing, "It's Going to be Alright" to be an anthem for life.

    Thank you for your heart for Rwanda. Thank you for your words. (I'd love to know the story behind that song.) Thank you for being a mother who has made the choice to allow her children to experience a lifestyle of Loving God and Loving People. Not simply looking at it in a book and reading stories.

    Oh, one more thing...What part of the country are most of your travels? North, South...

    an Ozark Mountain girl in the mountains of Rwanda