God Knows Exactly What He is Doing (Uganda Stories, Part I)

As I sat in the school office, I did a double take. Did that sign really say those words? 

Rewinding back to around three months before we were supposed to leave for our trip to Uganda: we found out that the organization we had planned to work with was cancelling all their summer trips. It was scary and overwhelming and heartbreaking. Not just for our team, but for everyone involved with this organization. They put loads of time and energy into that decision, and we knew they had not made it lightly.  We had no choice but to trust that God still had a plan for us.

We felt confident that the Lord had invited us to go to Uganda, and we knew that this change of plans was not a surprise to Him. I sat down one day to pray about the situation, and the only words that I could utter were these: You know exactly what You are doing.

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After I said that, I sighed relief and actually sort of giggled because, is there anything more true? And is there really anything else to say in a situation like that? He knows exactly what He is doing. I wrote it down on a sticky note and placed it on my corkboard by my bed.

So two weeks into our time in Uganda, we arrived at the school that we would be working at for the remainder of our trip. We got off the bus and were surrounded by the kids, immediately holding our hands and giving us hugs. It is a weird experience to be loved so immediately, but to know that a lot of it has to do with the color of our skin.

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They brought us into the head teacher’s office, where they passed around a guest book for us to sign. We loved some of the signs they had around the room, especially the one that said, “Silence is the best way to revenge.” Amen, Uganda, amen.

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I was taking it all in when my eyes landed on one particular phrase, right below: “Three S’s: Sweat Sacrifice Success” (another classic). It said: God knows exactly what He is doing.”

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I froze, just staring at it. My thoughts went from, That is what I have written in my room to Maybe that isn’t exactly what I have written in my room, there is no way! to No, that is absolutely 100% what I have written in my room. Mind.Blown.

Here I was, sitting in a school in Uganda, so many miles away from my home that Google Maps couldn’t even calculate it (I tried), and the same message remained. The same God repeated the same words to me: He knows exactly what He is doing. How faithful and kind is our Jesus!!

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SIDE BY SIDE. CAN’T HANDLE IT.

Our team felt that trust was a common theme for us, weaving through the fabric of our whole time in Uganda, and obviously before. If I learned anything (and I did, so much more to come), it is that He really does know exactly what He is doing. And if it doesn’t make sense or seems insane, that is because we are not Him. His ways are higher and His thoughts wilder than anything we could ever come up with. Take it from a girl who really never thought she would ever go to Africa, truly. God is so fun and adventurous and brave – and He knows exactly what He is doing.

If you feel overwhelmed, confused, lost, anxious, or whatever you feel in your life right now – I encourage you to make this your mantra. God knows exactly what He is doing. And, He sees and rewards our brave YES’s to His invitations.

He may be asking something terrifying of you, something that feels out of your comfort zone, something that makes your heart race, that demands more courage than you could ever imagine mustering in your tiny human body. Maybe He is asking you to move. To have a hard conversation. To say yes. To say no. To quit. To engage. To walk away. To wait. To start immediately. To pursue that dream or that person finally. Whatever it is, you can rest in this: He knows exactly what He is doing. I’m so sure of it, you guys.

This in no way implies or guarantees our safety or even our happiness, that is the key. But it guarantees close relationship with Him, and that is what all of this life stuff is about. A life of trust will be anything but safe, but it will be beautiful and FULL.

In what do you need to trust that God knows exactly what He is doing? Would love to hear from you. 🙂 

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One of those twenty-somethings trying to find my way through this silly world. I write to process, and sometimes send those thoughts out into the void. Passionate about Jesus and people and bringing those two together. Living in and loving Denver. Working with college students, who are the coolest. Seeking Jesus in everything.

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