Something special happened during our week of orientation camp. We became one huge team! We’re not quite sure exactly when… maybe when a combined group of African and Asians with a few Europeans mixed in worked for four hours every day peeling onions and preparing lunch over an open fire. Perhaps it was the “African Culture Day” when we sat down on grass mats and listened to tribal stories, got our hair done the traditional African “corn-cob row” style, or certainly the intentional mixing of race and languages during prayer and processing times had an effect. Whatever it was, all of us suddenly felt a little bit closer to what the Apostle Paul said about there being “neither Jew nor Greek, bond nor free, male nor female…”
We heard amazing testimonies from people who somehow discovered the joy of salvation despite horrifying insult and abuse from disapproving village witchdoctors and imams and key plenary sessions about how to serve one another first and see the effect on others as a natural by-product. The young Malian teenagers kept us aware of our King’s Kids heritage. I’ve included a short clip on this blog to give you an idea of their infectious energy and joy. Kinda makes you want to come along with us next year, doesn´t it? When it was all done on August 14th, we said goodbye to our Wolof hosts, Got our French driver ready with the Brazilian and Argentinian film crew, put our former Chinese sergeant in charge as packing coordinator, and then sat back and watched as German, Spanish, Dutch, Catalán, English, Swiss and other personalities somehow found a negotiated settlement as to how best to pack way too much stuff in way too small a space. Next stop: Mbar Toubab some 7 hours to the north!