The words of Queen and David Bowie have been rattling around in my brain for weeks. You know the one – “Under Pressure.”
Our ‘Get Schooled’ kids have now heard about our project and the pressure is on. Sometimes it bears down on me so heavily that I can’t sleep. The families come to my friend in Uganda almost daily, asking, “Is there any news, Pastor?” I can’t imagine what that feels like for him. Well, I guess I can imagine it to some extent as every day, I check our website, messages, and email to see myself if there is any news, any new donors, any comments or questions that relate to our project.
I’m not gonna lie. I feel very discouraged right now. I am very thankful that we have 20 sponsored kids that get to attend school, but the lies are creeping in.
- Only 20? Wow, you have a long way to go. You’re not even half way after all this work and all this generosity.
- Even if you DO get to 50, there are hundreds more who are getting nothing. What about them?
- One year of school is not going to make a difference. It’s only going to feel like a letdown when the year is up.
- You are going to fail. You are going to fail. You are going to fail.
Not to sound overly dramatic, but the words of this song really resonate with me. I have seen “what [their] world is about” and hear my African friends screaming, “Let me out!” and I don’t have the tools to bust down the door. I’ll be working away on my own stuff and get a text from a friend who is taking in a seven-year-old girl who was raped and needs medical treatment (what?!), or someone whose house was just destroyed in a storm and they have nowhere to go, or another yet who has had his entire food crop stolen in the night and now cannot feed his family. I know I have no way of understanding the magnitude of what my friends are truly going through and I certainly cannot financially support all of them because the needs are endless. Simply endless….. But I do see them. Their circumstances pierce my heart and I’m wrecked.
So, what do I do? I can try turning “away from it all like a blindman” but even Freddie Mercury and David Bowie know that sitting on a fence “don’t work.” I can offer something (albeit tiny) in the face of the suffering. Please understand my heart here – I am not trying to promote myself or make myself look good for any of this. I just need to process this aloud as I have felt so much support so far from many of you. And I know there are things in your own lives that are overwhelming and putting all kinds of pressure on you. It’s just part of being human and caring for each other. And I want to thank all of you who are daily living out Freddie’s challenge: “Love dares [us] to care about the people on the edge of the night and love dares [us] to change [our] way of caring about [ourselves].
This is our last dance.
This is ourselves.