A Conversation with God

“Hi, God. You around?”

“Hello, Patrick. Top of the morning to you. I’m here. How things are going for you? Are you with me or trying to do things by yourself?”

“Yeah, well, I think my faith in you is being tested again.”

“Why is that? Have I not fulfilled my promises to you?”

“No. No. I know you are here with me in Uganda. You sent me here. You’ve made provision for me here. It’s just, well…I don’t know…”

“Come on. Tell me what’s on your heart.”

“You know, I’ve done the best I can. You’ve put me in challenging situations from the start. I haven’t complained about any of that.”

“So what’s the problem again?”

“I’m lonely.”

“Lonely? But I am right here. Every minute. Every day. 24/7.”

“It’s not you. It’s me. Somehow, in someway, I get distracted. I lose sight of you. Then I find myself all by myself. I get anxious, I look for you…but I don’t find you right away.”

“Haha. Where do you look for me?”

“I try to focus on my work. I try to pray harder. I retreat to a quiet place.”

“That’s where you find me? Are you sure?”

“No, that’s not where I find you. There’s an emptiness in my stomach. I am lost. ‘Kobuzire,’ as the people say here. ‘You are lost!’ I don’t feel as confident, or as powerful as before.”

“Patrick..I agree with you that your faith is unsettled at the moment. Don’t worry about ‘why’ or what you’ve done to create your discomfort. Look for me. I am near. A friend who calls or visits and lifts your spirit, that’s me. With friends and strangers, I am with you. You are with me.”

“But sometimes I feel I’d rather just be alone. I’m an introvert, you know.”

“You’re a ‘people person,’ Patrick. That’s why you are well-liked and successful here. Stay with that. Trust in me. I am with you always. I don’t want to see you struggle. I have given you life and skills. I have made a way for you.”

“You make it sound so easy, God.”

“It’s not ‘easy,’ Patrick. Simple, yes; easy, no.”

“Thank you.”

“You’re most welcome. I’m always here.”

Living in Faith

Homily
7 June 2015
Voice of Kigezi Radio

Webale munonga. Mukama asiimwe. Thank you very much. Praise God.

Amazina gangye nibanyeta Patrick Hill… My name is Patrick Hill.

Ndikwegw’orukiga… I am learning Rukiga.

Ninduga California USA omuri America. I am from California, in the USA

pat vok

Nkija hanu omwaka oguwire. Neshemerirwe munoga. I was here last year. I am very happy.

Ndenda kusima munywani wangye Enoch Kayeeye ahabw’omugisha ogu kugamba nimwe akasheshe aka. Mukama asiimwe munonga. I want to thank my friend, Enoch Kayeeye, for giving me the opportunity to speak with you today. Praise God.

Ndikutura omuri Kabale kandi ndabasa kumara emyaka eshatu. Ndikukora na AICM. I am living in Kabale where I am working with AICM.

AICM eyejesize abaana emyoga okumara emyaaka makumi ashatu. AICM has trained young people with skills they can use for a better life for more than 30 years.

Abaana barikurenga omumutwaro bashomire ahi-tendekyero eri.
More than 10,000 young men and women have graduated from the vocational college

Obutegyeki bwa Bishop Kayeeye nokwikiriza kweye kututeire omu mwanya murungyi.
The leadership of Bishop Kayeeye and the faithfulness of Mukama has put us in a strong position today.

Nshemerwirwe munonga okukora na AICM. I am happy to be at AICM.

Mukama asiimwe. Praise God.

Eego…

Ogu ni interpreter wangye….Robina….Agandi, nyabo…Here is my interpreter, Robina. Good morning…

Our theme for today is “living by faith.”

We are using a part of Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians, chapter 4, beginning at verse 13.

Our life together is a wonderful experience…but not without troubles, pain or suffering.

As Paul writes, despite our troubles, we are not destroyed.

We experience hardships; families and friends experience loss.

Through our faith, we know and believe that God who raised Jesus to life, will also raise us up.

In Romans 4, Paul argues that Abraham was justified by works…and he had something to boast about.

But not before God.

For it is not through the law, or through works that Abraham and his offspring received the promise.

It was through faith, credited as righteousness…The promise comes by faith.

Faith is how we come to know God.

It is the instrument by which we are made right by God.

God honors faith…and our great faith honors God.

I am now in my fourth month in Kabale.

I feel comfortable here, surrounded by Christian believers.

It is like I am with my family.

God is present here in Kabale and Uganda, and wherever you may be listening.

He is present in my life.

He hears my prayers…and answers them quickly and loudly.

Mukama asiimwe.

But there have been times when my faith has weakened.

When I have not received messages or encouragement from home.

When my efforts to help AICM and others goes slower than I would like.

My weakened faith has left me lonely at times.

Of course, I turn to Jesus in prayer and hope for relief and restoration.

The wonder of Jesus is that he hears us and sends messengers to encourage us and to love us.

I shared my recent faith struggle with one of my best friends in Uganda.

And she shared with me the word of the Lord which has lifted me ever since. I reflect on it daily.

2 Chronicles 20: 15, 17

In second Chronicles, Judah is facing attack by Moabites and Ammonites, and others.

King Jehosaphat pleads to God, “we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do.”

Then God answered.

In our lives today, we worry about many things.

Our minds magnify our troubles and our weakness grows.

But the Lord is faithful. He knows our concerns. He hears our cries.

In the face of the great army against Judah, and in the face of the trials and troubles in our own lives, the Lord answers.

Through friends, neighbours or whoever he chooses.

This is what he said to them in Judah:

“Don’t be afraid or discouraged…the battle is not yours, but God’s.”

“You will not have to fight your battles. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you.”

My brothers and sisters, have you heard more encouraging words?

Words of faith. Trust. Belief in God’s promise.

We can stand up to our spiritual enemies.

We can face our problems, our struggles in this world.

The advantage will be ours….but we must have faith and trust in the Lord.

So do what you do. Pray. Reflect. Take your position. Stand firm. The Lord will deliver you.

For this reason, we never become discouraged, Paul writes.

We grow older…our physical being gradually decays yet our spiritual being is renewed day after day.

Our faith can grow each day…through prayer, fellowship and the word of God.

The small, temporary problems will fade…revealing eternal glory…much greater than the trouble.

Amina….