At the publishing time of this post, our first Man Up and Go missions team is probably fast asleep after a busy three days in Kampala, Uganda, with Return Ministries
leader and pastor, Samuel Bubonero. Tomorrow they make the long bus ride east to Pallisa, where they will be ministering with another Pastor Samuel, founder of Kerith Ministries and pastor at the River of God church.
Some of our team members are blogging about their experience, so we thought you’d like to hear directly from them (below). We’ve also linked to their blogs so you can get the full scoop.
God is moving through the men’s conferences we are helping to facilitate, and among the orphans and children we are loving on. We continue to pray for His blessing, for His will, and for His divine providence to reign supreme over both our team members and the Ugandan children, men, and women with whom they interact. We hope you’ll enjoy the pictures from the first three days of their trip.
From team member Tyler (Read his blog HERE)
When we went to go pickup team #2 from Return Ministries I was able to find the girl I sponsor. Her name is Mirembe Winney and she is 11 years old (and she’s so tall!). I met her last year on my first day in Uganda and she impressed me so much with how attentive she was to her younger peers. When I walked in she started dancing up and down and ran immediately to me (my heart melted) and she pulled out a picture of the two us together that I had sent her at Christmas time. She wrote me a letter and told me all about her school, friends, and family. It was such a special moment for me and it is one the highlights of my year. Mirembe (which means peace) continues to impress me with her selfless heart as she told me that if I send any gifts, to send a ball because her brothers would love to play with it as well. It was hard to tell her goodbye after such a short time together, but I was able to tell her with confidence that God willing, I will be back again!
From team member Karly
Yesterday, I sat with a Muslim boy (who I also met last year) and his friends for a few hours and was blessed with the opportunity to share the Gospel with my misled Ugandan friends. Please be praying for Mohammed. 19 young men came to a saving faith in the Lord at our first men’s conference!! Our team is healthy and pumped to be traveling to a new city tomorrow to share the word or God and Jesus’ love to these beautiful people. Thank you for the prayers!!
From team member Peter (Read his blog HERE)
When the conference ended a young man came forward and shook my hand. He continued to say “Thank You” for coming. He said that the truths shared were very powerful and he had learned a lot during our time together. He said that he could not thank us enough for coming. He told me that he had accepted Jesus as his personal savior 5 years ago. He said that the Bible he had been given at that time was torn. He said that the the binding of it was also gone. He asked if we could spare another Bible to give him Bible of his own.
I said “Absolutely!” He followed me to the van and I dug out a Bible and gave it to him. He was extremely happy to receive his own Bible. He asked why I came from so far to see them. I explained that it was because I loved Jesus.
In just a week from now, the first Man Up and Go team leaves US soil bound for Africa. This will be the 12th trip since a bunch of rag-tag guys back in 2011 decided to make a difference in the world. They grabbed a bunch of like-minded folks, raised support for their trip, and traipsed off to Ethiopia and Uganda to LOVE BIG on orphans and widows there. It’s been nothing short of amazing to see what God has done since then.
There was never any plan to do anything other than just that one trip. And yet nearly five years later, Man Up and Go is an official 501(c)3 with a vision to serve and significantly reduce the number of orphans in the world. What began as an undeniable urge to just do something bigger than oneself has now yielded fruit 240 times over.
240 others have taken that step to answer God’s call on a Man Up and Go missions trip to Africa. 14 more begin their own journey next Monday, and we are fully confident God will honor their obedience to leave family and friends, comfort and ease, all in search of a bigger meaning, a greater purpose, and a deeper longing for significance that only God can give. No, they’re not traveling 7000 miles to be saviors or to tell the Ugandan people how to become American. It’s not our job to change cultures. It is, however, our job to GO. (Hello, James 1:27.) If something needs to be changed, whether it be in a developing nation or in a heart that God wants to develop, we want Him to do it, bereft of any human agenda. The only agenda we want is His.
Will you join us in praying for these 14 missionaries? They will have an opportunity to be the physical presence of God that many of these children have never known. They will encourage single mothers and widows who are learning how to survive and provide on sometimes as little as $1.25/day. They will help gather men together and act as iron sharpening iron at different Man Up Men’s Conferences.
- Pray that they would allow God to empty them entirely, and that the Holy Spirit of Christ would fill them to the fullest, that they might be poured out wine upon the people of Uganda.
- Pray for physical wellness and strength, as the body often goes through shock from sleep deprivation, different foods, and emotional distress.
- Pray for safety, both en route and in country.
- Pray for those who will interact with our team, that friendships would develop and hearts would be softened because of our presence there.
- Pray that the enemy would have no place in the team’s presence, and that any tempt to thwart our efforts to advance the Kingdom would themselves be thwarted.
- Pray for our pastors and partners on the ground, that transportation, lodging, and any other logistics would fall into place smoothly and without hiccup.
- Pray for our trip leaders, Mitch and Mark, for wisdom and leadership as they protect and shepherd the group.
- Finally pray whatever God leads you to pray.
We look forward to their return already, to hear the stories of how God moved in the team and among the people. But most of all, we want to see Jesus get all the credit, and that His name might be made a little more famous because of this trip.
Thank you for your prayers – it’s exciting to be a part of the Man Up and Go team these days!