Greetings from Kigali!

I can hardly believe that I am actually here. The few weeks have been such a strange transition back to life in Kigali. A lot of things looks and feel exactly the same as when I was here in 2013, but my life this time around seems so much different. I’m getting used to living in a completely different part of town, figuring out my daily rhythms, and a much slower pace of life than I am used to.

I have also been figuring out where to begin setting roots for the work of Word Made Flesh Rwanda. I’m here to create a community that lives to serve Jesus among the most vulnerable here, but where do I start? Honestly, I have been pretty overwhelmed by the task before me. I was recently reassured by this passage from the book Compassion by Henri Nouwen, Donald McNeill, and Douglas Morrison,

“At this point, the question arises, ‘How can we build community? What do we have to do to make community happen?’ But perhaps such questions come from an anxious heart and are less practical and helpful than they appear to be. It seems better to raise the more contemplative question, ‘Where do we see community occurring?’ Once we have become sensitive to the reality of community in our midst, we may find it easier to discover the most appropriate starting point for its growth and development. It makes more sense to sow seed in soil which we have already seen something grow than to stand around worrying about how to make the soil fertile.”

One of those moments when I felt absolutely sure that this book, or at least this passage, was written specifically for me, right now. Please pray for me as I begin to change my focus from building community to seeking community. I believe I have found some people who are doing good community work to begin partnerships with, but it is only a start. Pray for wisdom, for health, and for deep friendships here.

Peace,

Shelbye

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One thought on “Greetings from Kigali!

  1. Bryan says:

    That’s so exciting. My wife and I traveled to Rwanda last summer with our church and spent most of our time in Kibungo. We were glad to visit Kigali and experience a bit of what a larger city is like in Africa. Prayers for you as you minister there.

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