Salome is a beautiful girl I met two years ago in the slum. When I met her, she had such a sweet, sad smile. A smile full of regret. But there was a tenderness in her I was drawn to. She was pregnant with yet another man's baby. A man who paid and left. I remember how brave she looked, and how amazed I was that she had not aborted this baby, unlike so many others I'd met. Just another mouth they can't afford to feed. Just another one they can't bear to see starving.
Salome's face haunted me. Always when I visited the slums, I would seek her out to hug her. I felt like Jesus with his lost sheep, just dying for her to come back home.
This year, Salome knew love. Real love. The love of Jesus and she gave her life to him. She finally came home. She attended our counseling course in the spring, and she is now employed by our Jewelry Project. Sometime during that time, we discovered she was pregnant again, but we just kept loving on her.
Last week, we dedicated to a time of worship, prayer, fasting, and visioning with all our staff, and of course, the community, because they always seem to come when there is prayer. It was incredible. We dreamt about what it would look like to see revival come to Gulu. To see what God's Kingdom would look like. We watched Heidi Baker videos and asked God for his strategy here in Uganda, to see heaven come down. We laughed, we cried, but mostly we got closer.
God really showed up and women were delivered, and healed and empowered to reach their own communities of women and sex workers who still have not had the heart to leave the industry.
For the first time, I really saw them get excited about giving to others. That they are the pastors, teachers, and ones who lay hands on the sick to see them get healed. We commissioned them and anointed them with oil and the holy spirit came upon us all and we got excited about what He is going to do.
Salome came every day even though she was very pregnant and tired. She walked. And she came. And on Friday she gave birth to a healthy baby boy. Without hesitation, our community of women was like, “Let's go visit Salome in the hospital,” so after a long day, a group of 14 women and volunteers got into the back of the pickup truck and drove down the dusty road to Lachor hospital. Salome was so excited to see us and receive our gifts. But mostly, I think she felt the love. That she has a community around her.
And she'll never be alone again.
This is what the Kingdom looks like. Outstretched hands. And ones who are healed, healing others.
We strike a match and everywhere, there are flames shooting up across the horizon.