Five on Friday: Rwanda Edition

Happy Friday y’all! I’m slowly getting back in the swing of things which is both a relief and sad at the same time. I’m fighting “normal” life as much as possible but some things are bound and determined to go back to the way they were before our trip to Rwanda.

Since I’ve only shared just a few pictures from the trip, I thought I would kick off my recaps and share five {of many} things I loved about Rwanda.

ONE | The fabulous four.

 

Barnabas X Rwanda III team

I can’t say enough wonderful things about our group. Cory and I were extremely nervous about leading our first group with Barnabas X but we couldn’t have been blessed with an easier group of people to go with. It helps that Jarrod and Amber are such good friends to Cory and myself but it’s a little scary how smoothly the trip went for the four of us. Being with such an amazing group made the trip a once in a lifetime experience.

TWO | Church.

Church in Rwanda is on a whole ‘nother level. There’s no band with expensive equipment or fancy light show. Heck, they were thrilled to have power for half the service. And when they lost it, the choir didn’t even skip a beat. Someone just walked over to a traditional skin drum and picked up right where the music left off. Actually, I didn’t even realize they had lost power until Cory mentioned it after the service. They pulled it off so smoothly, I thought it was planned.

I’ve always prided our church on being free in the Holy Spirit but we’ve got nothing on the Rwandans. Experiencing how genuine and free they are in their relationship with God was breath of fresh air. Oh, how I long to be that free- to be so moved by His mighty way that I hold absolutely nothing back. To be less concerned about what everyone else around me thinks if I want to dance, jump, scream or shout!

THREE | Night with Josephine’s family.

Worship 2

Every Friday night, Josephine and her family {she has 8 siblings} get together and have a time of worship and prayer. Since we were there, Josephine hosted it at her house our last Friday night in Rwanda.

worship

Not only were we welcomed with loving and open arms but I’ve never felt as close to God as I did sitting on their couch, singing with her family- it was intoxicating. I truly believe God allowed us to end our trip with this because it was like the icing on the cake. For two weeks, we were “in the pocket” in service to God–right in the thick of it, doing and thinking nothing but service and having to rely on the Spirit at all times and being able to worship with Josephine and her family intensified every emotion and experience we’d been through. We all felt drenched by the love of God that night.  Sometimes, God shows up in the biggest, most unexpected ways and He definitely showed out that night.

Her family is so close and it speaks volumes that every week they set aside time to be there for each other, not only as a family but as brothers and sisters in Christ. It definitely taught Cory and I a thing or two about how to do our small group the right way. Why have we not thought of a time of worship before???

FOUR | Home visits.

Home Visits Rwanda

Home visits were, emotionally, one of the hardest parts of the trip. We entered these homes where children were sleeping on dirt floors with potato sacks for a bed, where they kept their chickens or goats inside so they wouldn’t get stolen and where children were carrying benches from house to house just so we would have somewhere to sit.

Home Visits Rwanda

Often times, they had very small doors {think hard for me to squeeze through} and one small window, if they had one at all. Some homes were made with concrete but many were made from mud and were falling down due to rainy seasons washing their house away.

It broke our hearts yet taught us so much because people thanked God for us coming into their home and praying over them. They appreciated us- snobby, ungrateful, wasteful Americans, for coming and blessing them with simply our presence and our prayers.

They had no idea that we were being blessed so much more than they could ever be blessed by our prayers. Thank you, Lord for breaking our hearts.

Rwanda Home Visits

FIVE | The children.

RCRI children
Oh, the children. By far, my favorite part of the trip. It’s hard for me to put my emotions into words when it comes to these precious children because often all I have is tears. Their eyes, their hands, their bare feet…they all tell so many stories of hardship, malnutrition, starvation.

Children Rwanda

But the joy! Oh, the joy these children have. The smiles on their faces, the songs out of their mouths, the giggles from deep within…that precious joy.

Rwanda

Nyabihu Rwanda childrenPaige Home visits

These children changed my life and I will do everything in my power to help change theirs.

 

 

Rwanda

If you are interested in helping me change the life of just one child, shoot me an email. For $20 a month {that is giving up Starbucks ONCE a week}, you can sponsor a child and change their life forever.

I’ve literally got thousands of pictures, videos and stories to share but just haven’t felt ready to start recapping the whole trip yet. It will come though and when I’m ready I’ll start sharing day-by-day pictures. Hope y’all have a great weekend!

linked with karli, amanda, lauren, andrea and darci.

24 thoughts on “Five on Friday: Rwanda Edition

  1. This brought tears to my eyes! What a special, life changing trip and I’m so glad that everything went smoothly for you. Growing up, we always sponsored children and it was such a joy just to receive their letters and drawings, I can’t imagine actually spending time with them! Love this!

  2. I pray I can go on a mission trip one day! This post, it’s what it’s all about girl. These pictures are just beautiful and heart breaking at the same time. I truly can only imagine how this trip completely changed yours and Cory’s life. So glad you got this experience. Thank you for sharing it with us!

  3. Oh those kids…. I can’t imagine the conditions they live in.
    I always hear that worship/church in other parts of the country – ones that have so little – they really worship. Straight from their heart – LOUDLY – BOLDLY. Isn’t it weird how people with less are more thankful? What a lesson…

    Your face worshipping… beautiful!

  4. sounds like a life changing experience :) they can definitely teach us a thing or two about being grateful, cant they. my family and i have sponsored children all my life, its something my mum really believes in. every bit helps, right?

  5. I love hearing about your trip, it sounds so amazing! I don’t know why but that video brought on some tears. I obviously don’t know what they’re singing but it’s beautiful and they seem so happy even though they don’t have much. And as always, your pictures are amazing. Can’t wait to see and hear more about your trip, have a great weekend girl!

    1. Girl, I wish everyone could experience what we did at church that day. It was unreal! They are so happy, all the time, and they rely so much on God because He’s all they’ve got!

  6. These five things are so powerful and amazing! Just.. wow!!! What a blessing that you were able to take this trip and make such a difference and have such an amazing experience! Love hearing about it and looking at the pictures!!!

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