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Thursday, December 16, 2010

Better Than The Shirt Off Your Back

If you're anything like me, when you have been flying for 24 hours, the shirt off your back is actually no great prize. In fact, the first thing I like to do after an all-day ordeal in the air is to get that shirt off to the laundry and take a shower. And yet it is considered an act of great kindness and a compliment to say that a person would give you the shirt off their back, regardless of perspiration or odor.
So I arrived a few hours ago in Kampala after a variety of false starts, looming delays and other obstacles that threatened to keep me from arriving in time for this morning's court appearance (3 hours from now). When I finally did arrive, on time, in Kampala I felt no small sense of victory and satisfaction. That quickly depleted as one by one my fellow passengers collected their bags and departed. I shouldn't have been surprised. I should have known better too having something similar happen earlier this year on one of our trips. I should have checked nineteen different bags, each containing only one small item that I needed. No doubt if I had done that I would be writing to you of the great travesty of all nineteen bags being somehow lost at the same time.
I reluctantly left the airport to meet Godfrey outside. He is alway cheerful and encouraged me that we would work something out. Even though it was already approaching 11 p.m. he said nonchalantly, "we'll just swing by my place and see which of my suits might fit you best". And so that's what we did. He woke up his wife and rummaged through his closet while I waited in the living room. He pulled out several different suits and laid them on the couch, along with a brand new shirt still in the box, cuff links a tie and shoes. I tried on jackets and remarkably, things seemed to work out very well despite some size differences here and there. As long as I take it easy at breakfast, I should be able to fasten the waist button.
It is truly humbling. I prefer to be the one on the giving end and don't like receiving very well. I don't know why that is. Godfrey so freely gave what he had - the best of what he had. He could have easily taken off his own shirt and I would have gladly taken it as mine is currently better used as a mosquito deterrent. Instead, he gave me a brand new shirt still in the box. Probably a gift that he was saving for a special occasion. I pray I can be as giving and loving as that one day.


Anonymous said...

Dan, you guys have been so much on my heart the last few days! I am continuing to pray right now!!! Leslie

sara said...

What a sweet blessing that God put right before you as a weary traveler! Praising Him for Godfrey and for the mighty example of God's love. Praying for the ruling...we will be up when you are in court and we will not stop praying!!

Anonymous said...

From Streams in the Desert "Therefore let us trust also in him, though all the delays, in spite of all the difficulties and in the face of all the rejection we encounter in life. And in spite of our feelings and evidence to the contrary, and even when we cannot understand our way or our situation, may we still trust also in him for he shall bring it to pass. The way will open, our situation will be changed and the end result will be peace. The cloud will finally be lifted and the light of eternal noonday will shine at last." Praying for God's mercy, grace and will to be done. Carrie

Chasity said...

Thank you so much for sharing! What a humbling and awe-inspiring experience. I cannot wait to meet this Godfrey for myself! Blessings!