Saturday, July 26, 2014

why i'm leaving uganda...

well, this is a post i never, ever ever planned to write. like ever, but i'm pretty sure that's kind of how God works.

i can sing and state "His will, not my own" but when it all shakes out i still honestly hold out hope that "my" will and His will match up. sometimes, they do. but sometimes, they don't.

when i announced my "move" to Uganda, i planned to move. my plan was to stay until November, go home for Christmas, and move back indefinitely in January of 2015. it seemed like a perfect plan, i felt [at the time] that this was God's will for me and that it was what would happen.

i came thinking i would be making this my home. my indefinite, forever and ever home.

but, sometimes God's plans aren't always our own. sometimes, His plans are mind blowing and make you want to, with everything in you, resist. because sometimes what God sees fit is not at all what you saw fit for your life.

the two weeks leading up to my move to Uganda were stressful beyond belief. it was spent finding plans had fallen through, finding broken situations, and realizing how incapable i am. i was shaken and knew that God had something else in the works. i thought that maybe this wasn't His final plan after all. but i still packed everything and headed to uganda according to plan.

once in uganda, God continued to work on my heart. He continued to reveal needs to me that I had no idea about before. He broke my heart for what broke His and brought me to a new understanding. God transformed how I saw the world within a few days of being in this land.

I prayed and sought His will for my life and He showed me so clearly time and time again the answer. when the answer came, i came out kicking and screaming. this was not my plan. not my want. and certainly not the lifestyle i pictured. yet, at the end of the day my loyalties lie at the feet of Jesus and trusting that His plan for my life is so much better than my own.

His plan you ask?


in this country, education is the key to everything. it is a door opener and it is a world changer. it is the key to everything i would like to do. if i want to make a difference in uganda or anywhere else in the world, an education is crucial.

i never want my only qualification to be "professional baby holder" because to be honest, a Ugandan can hold a baby and therefore i'd be completely useless.

i want God to use me in every way and in all of my talents.

if i come to this land with no prior education or anything to help educate and empower these people, i'm doing no good.

i've had quite a few people confused.
"why do you need an education there?" they ask
and this is the only way i know how to answer,

the people of uganda deserve the best. they deserve better than an 18 year old girl with nothing but high school and google to help empower them. they deserve someone that can teach and train them. they deserve the best. not "good enough" or simply ok. i would be crazy to think i could teach a class, preach a sermon, or train others in therapy for children in the states if i didn't have recommendations, a college degree, volunteer hours, and previous experience. so why should uganda be any different?

coming to terms that i have to leave where my soul loves for this new season is hard. so hard. but this time in uganda has been a season, too. the season ahead is one that i feel God has called me to and is absolutely necessary for my future and my future in uganda or wherever He may call me. it may not be the season i planned, but i am slowly learning that God's plans aren't really affected by my own. and i find myself more thankful everyday for what the future holds and for this land that i have been able to call home for a short time.

this is by no means the end to my ministry or to missions. this is simply a step in the process. it just means it will take a few more years and a lot of summer trips in between. it is just a stepping stone + i've come to realize through all this that i still have so much ahead. and i'm anxious to see where God leads me on this journey.

so here begins my most unexpected adventure yet…


1 comment:

  1. Hey Ashton! I just started working for your mom in her store and have heard so much about you!

    I think you would be interested in doing something that I did twice called Journey. It's through an orginization called Choose to Invest. They don't go to Uganda, but to Kenya. I'd love to talk to you about it when you get home but I think you would love it!

    Their website is