Amy in Africa {Meet a Missionary in Uganda}

by Laura on February 24, 2012

I am running a new occasional feature on the blog that highlights other ministries or missionaries I hear about, rub shoulders with, feel inspired by, or bump into in the blogworld. I have a hunch that most of you reading are genuinely interested in living and working overseas, and I’d love for you to get the chance to hear some different stories than the ones I am telling. If you are a missionary and would like to share your ministry or story here, please email or comment me and let me know.

Our first overseas guest is Amy. She is serving in Africa, and she was willing to answer several questions for me via email. She writes a fantastic blog about her journey at:  AisforAmyinAfrica.blogspot.com .  I know you’ll be inspired, as I was, about what she’s doing and what she’s learning . . .

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My name is Amy and I’ve been living in Uganda for the past two years working for Revelation Life.  We work in four slums trying to bring transformation in every area of life by sharing the love of Jesus, building pit latrines, sponsoring kids in school, bringing medical care, etc…It’s busy, hot, and hard work, but we’re seeing God do some incredible things.

Someone Impacted by Our Work:  Sharifa was born with spina bifida and hydrocephalus. She needed surgery to survive, but her family could not afford the $75 it would cost. Mama Sharifa considered throwing her baby away because she couldn’t cope with the thought of watching her child die. Telling Mama Sharifa we’d pay for surgery was one of the best moments of my time here! She cried and couldn’t stop thanking us. It was overwhelming to be the answer to someone’s desperate prayer. Sharifa had surgery and is now happier and stronger than ever. Even after surgery the doctors said she would never be able to move her legs, walk, or control her bladder.  We’ve prayed with her every week since, and she has started kicking her legs!  We believe she’ll be healed completely.

Someone Who’s Impacted Me:  So many people here have had a major impact on my life.  There was one little girl going through horrible abuse a couple years ago. I gave myself to her and spent hours holding her in my arms until she could speak and smile again. Loving her changed my life, and seeing the joy in a little girl who was in and out of hospital from abuse challenged me deeply. On one trip back from the hospital she sang the Lugandan song ‘if the Lord is on our side, things are already better, things are already better…’ over and over. It’s become an anthem to me. If she can sing and trust God through that at four years old, how can I ever doubt?

Advice to Another Missionary:  You’re there for love NOT need.

If we focus on the need, it’s far too overwhelming. There’s too much pain, war, disease.  But that’s not why we’re here.  We’ve come to love. To pour out all we have to the one in front of us. To show them that they’re worth it. To bring hope to the darkest places.If we focus on that, the need almost disappears because ‘love changes everything it touches’ (as our director is constantly telling us!). We’ve seen so many lives changed just as we’ve chosen to consistently demonstrate love…we’ve even seen physical sickness healed through it.  There’s so much more power in love than what we’ve experienced.

Biggest Struggles on the Field:  This is a hard question to answer because there’s just so many struggles. I would say the whole first year is the biggest struggle! Adjusting to a new culture, being away from home, seeing pain and poverty every day, learning to live in community with the people you work with, feeling like you can’t escape it…It’s all hard. But WORTH IT. The sacrifices are nothing compared to what He sacrificed for us.

Biggest Lessons Learned so Far:  Probably the biggest lesson I’ve learned is how to control my own emotions and to choose joy and hope in every circumstance. Ok, probably still learning this one, but I do think it’s the most important. I believe God wants to take us to darker and darker places, but if we sink into a pit with every hard thing we encounter, we can’t move forward very fast. We have to believe that He is good, He is faithful, He is in everything.

Benefits of Living Overseas: When everything else is stripped away, it makes room for Jesus to become your everything. I’ve encountered God more in the past two years sitting in the dirt than in all the hours I spent at mission schools, conferences, etc. He responds to desperation and fills every need that we have. Having more of him makes every hard day completely worth it.

Amy Jorgenson, AisforAmyinAfrica.blogspot.com

  • http://www.angiewashington.com/ @ngie

    This is great! I really enjoyed getting to know about you and what you do, Amy. Thanks!

    Favorite line: I’ve encountered God more in the past two years sitting in the dirt than
    in all the hours I spent at mission schools, conferences, etc.
     

    Good word!

  • http://bahava.wordpress.com Katy

    Oh I love it and love hearing about Africa! Thanks for sharing, Amy!

    • http://www.lauraparkerblog.com Laura

      I think Katy and Amy should meet . . . . :)

  • http://www.grandmaslettersfromafrica.blogspot.com/ Linda Thomas

    Powerful stuff! Bless you, Amy, for your ministries there inUganda, and for sharing with us. You have touched my heart today and I praise God for you and the dear ones you minister to and with.

    Linda

    • Amy Lynn Jorgensen

      Thanks Linda!  Glad it touched you!!  Lots of love! 
      Amy

    • http://www.lauraparkerblog.com Laura

      I agree! Amy seems like a real gem!

  • Sarah Drinka

    Love her heart. She challenges me daily.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Teri-Miller/100000244322626 Teri Miller

    Thanks for this truthful, real-life glimpse.  I so appreciate the concept that it’s more about giving LOVE than fixing everything.  Even the small steps we are taking…seems overwhelming if I focus on the enormity of the needs.  But if I can focus just on pouring out my love for these kids…then there is hope for having something of value to offer.
    This was important for me to hear.
    Right now.
    Thanks for that!

    • http://www.lauraparkerblog.com Laura

      I think that was what struck me the most, too . . .

  • Pingback: Meet the Missionary {Angie in Bolivia}()

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