Saturday, March 12, 2005

Laughter, great medicine

As Americans we grow up not worrying much about our next meal, how to get clean drinking water, how to prevent and treat common sicknesses, etc. We can move about freely on nice roads and get loans at the bank for a house or to start a business.

Millions and millions of Africans grow up without those "freedoms of life." The past two weeks we've driven by thousands of people carrying heavy loads up steep hills to the marketplace. We've passed hospitals that don't have any equipment to help the sick. We've seen many villages with no access to clean drinking water. And then we've seen pictures and video of children watching their parents brutally raped and murdered before being killed themselves in a genocide.

These two worlds clashing can be difficult for Americans to process emotionally. American missionaries get many requests every day for money for medicine, food, capital for a small business, etc. It can easily get overwhelming.

That's why I'm thankful that my teammates carrying on the work in Uganda know how to laugh and just be goofy. After a long week of travel seeing the above conditions we spent the better part of a day joking around and laughing until we hurt. Not because we think the situation is funny, but because laughter truly is great medicine for the soul when you've dug in deep helping the needy.

Please pray for the emotional well-being of your missionaries and that they will frequently experience the gift of laughter.


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