“Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last and the last first.” (Mark 10:29-31)

Okay so the persecutions part isn’t all that exciting but, I think the other part is one of the many cool things about being a Christian. One of the early disciples wrote, ‘We have no house, but we have homes.’ Throughout my life, God has blessed me by surrounding me with good people even in foreign lands. Lesotho is a prime example of that. Donna and Allan have continued to invite me into their home and their circle of friends. So even though I don’t have my house or family here, God has provided me with many warm homes and warm people. Pretty cool.

Life in Lesotho has been quite different from what life was like in Malawi and I’m sure as it will be in Uganda. I have not been spending much time with the locals, rather, I’ve been spending my free time with other Westerners who have chosen to do ministry in Lesotho. I think this has been a valuable experience as well though because I have been so inspired to hear the stories of people who have sacrificed so much of their lives to do God’s work. This has put things into perspective for me. One year of my life suddenly doesn’t seem like so long when you talk with people who have been doing this for over 30 years.

Last week the Long’s invited me and Brian, another American volunteer, to go to Bloemfontein in South Africa for the day. They are also watching a little Lesotho girl named Millie for the time being so they could fatten her up and nurse her back to health. She was malnourished before they took her in, but now she is doing well. Anyway, Maseru is right near the border, so it is easy to go back and forth. Bloem had two large malls with lots of restaurants and a movie theater. We saw the A-Team (oh Bradley). It is crazy what a difference there is between SA and Lesotho, yet they are right next to each other. It doesn’t seem fair really. Bloem is in what is now called “Free State.” It was the hub of a lot of the issues with apartheid that we hear about in SA. There is still a large population of Afrikaans (white, Dutch ancestory), and some of them still aren’t over it. I think it will take several generations. You should’ve seen the confused looks they gave me as I pushed little Millie around in her stroller haha! Love it.

Anyway, this past weekend I went site-seeing with Justin (Australian), Sue (New Zealander) and Sarah Jane (Irish). On the way to our destination, Justin accidently went past a stop sign and nearly got arrested and put in prison for 5 months! The dirty cop decided to bribe us for 100 rand instead grrr. (Good thing this doesn’t happen at home or I would’ve been in jail for like 10 years by now.) We stopped at the Sesotho Weaving Gallery where women were making the most beautiful rugs and tapestries, and then to the Kome Caves. They are homes that have been built on the underside of a mountain and are made of mud. What was really fun about it was hanging out with the people that live there. They are used to visitors so they were happy to welcome us and talk for a while. The women sang and banged on a metal can and the children did an impromptu dance for us. It must be in the African genes that they all know how to automatically pop their hips—they were so good! They walked us up the mountain to the car and waved us off. It was a very scenic and exciting afternoon.

On Sunday I went to church with the Long’s, had a real coffee (yay!), and attended my first Lesotho braai (or BBQ as we know it). It was an eventful weekend, and I was glad to have the company. I’m so glad that God has continued to put good people in my life.

Playing with the children in the Kome Caves village