Jesus Loves The Children and A Trip To The Motherland – Tanzania Day 1

It’s about 10:00 p.m. on Sunday evening and we (Compassion Bloggers) just finished an amazingly draining yet energizing day. Draining, because we have flown for well over 48hrs due to plane delays, long layovers, schedule changes and you name it. To top the draining portion of the day off, half of the bloggers’ luggage did not arrive (LaKendria and I are in that half that didn’t arrive… insert sad face). Yes today was draining; however today was also Energizing, because… well I’ll get to the energizing part in a moment.

A Little Background: As long as I can remember I have either made statements about the Motherland (referring to Africa), I even found myself sometime in the 80′s wearing the African medallion around my neck. For the first time my wife and I landed in the Motherland together. To be specific we have been to Nairobi Kenya for an airport layover and made our final destination of Mwanza, Tanzania. It’s kind of surreal, lots of emotions, glad we are here together, along with the rest of the amazing bloggers on this trip.

Let’s Get Up To Speed: We finally made it to our hotel for just enough time to check-in, grab lunch and head out to one of the Compassion International CIV Project. I was amazed to see all of the parents and children there to greet us at the church on a Sunday evening. They were all so thankful for the generosity of Compassion International, in other words they were thankful to everyone that sponsors a child or donates to Compassion in any shape, form, or fashion. Those investments are making lasting deposits into the lives of these children and changing their outlook.

My Thoughts From Today: Let me start off by saying, I have so much information, perspective and emotions that I could write forever; however I’ll be sharing every day for the next few days and have memories for a lifetime. Today we had the opportunity to spend time with the pastor, volunteers, parents and project workers. This time allowed us to gain great perspective of the compassion programs and services, while seeing their impact firsthand. I asked the Pastor how other churches perceived them in the community since they were a compassion partner? The pastor informed us that being a compassion partner and having the Compassion CIV project has really been a unifying factor for the community and the Body Of Christ.

He explained that it’s been the one thing that has crossed denominational and cultural lines for the church. They can all come together for the children and for the sake of the Gospel. It was great to hear stories about kids that have come to know Jesus, pastors partnering with other pastors and parents coming forward to have their children prayed for in the name of Jesus. The Body Of Christ in Mwanza is being united around the children and that doesn’t surprise me, because the children are important to God.

I’m reminded of this account in scripture, Matthew 19:13-14

One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could lay his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him. But Jesus said, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.”

Back To The Energizing Part: I was energized deep down inside to see a group of people living in such poverty demonstrate how richly blessed they were. I was energized by the fact that I’ve had very little sleep, have not taken a bath in a couple of days, our luggage is lost at this point and you know what “We will be alright.” I was energized by teaching some of the locals here a little slang, the #FistBump, talk Jesus and talk a little sports. I found out that the center for the Memphis Grizzlies, Hasheem Thabeet is a local.

Quotable Moments: One of the church volunteers said the two key problems in their area is poverty and not enough activities. A grandmother raising her 3 grandchildren due to mother leaving when they were young said her dream for her family to have a better roof over their head. “Mr. Scott & Mrs. LaKendria, people keep talking to you as though you speak Swahili… they may think you are from here.” Ha, we are in the motherland.

Tomorrow we get to visit another project and I’ll have a whole lot more to share, I’ll close by saying this. What Compassion International is able to do with $38 a month sponsorship is amazing and helps children, even families get out poverty. Children are coming to know Jesus and communities are being more connected. for those of you that sponsor a child, I want to say thanks on behalf of these children and families. Those of you who have yet to sponsor a child, can sponsor a Tanzanian child by clicking here. Who knows, maybe I’ll give your child a #FistBump while I’m out here.

Below are some pictures that a personally took today. I’m not a photographer; however these are my images through my lens.

Join in, share your thoughts, ask me questions or feel free to make some requests of me while I’m out here,over here, down here.

Chico is a Compassion child currently be sponsored

This Little guy was looking to the sky

Hundreds of people gathered at the church simply to say Thank You!

Grandmother raising her 3 grandchildren... Compassion is helping w/ Chico

Looking out the door

On The Road Again

Any of these pics. stand out to you?

Thanks for reading… Check back tomorrow. 

  • http://twitter.com/_godsgal4ever alyssa

    This is so great!

    Visiting Tanzania is definitely on my bucket list. I sponsor a little girl in Tanzania… but I didn’t see her centre on the list of the ones you guys are visiting. :(

    So sick to hear about Hasheem Thabeet… I’m a super big sports fan. In fact, the Knicks-Heat game is playing in the background right now! :P

    I’ll definitely be following along all week and you guys are in my prayers! :)

    • ScottWilliams

      Thanks for the kind words… what is your little girls name? 

      The grizzlies are a tough bunch… they always give my #Thunder fits. Please follow along.

      Go Jesus!
      Go Thunder!
      Go Compassion!

      • http://twitter.com/_godsgal4ever alyssa

        ah, a OKC fan. ;)

        her name’s happyness buretta, she’s from TZ674. :)

  • Tony Daniels

    Hey Pastor Scott, thanks for sharing! I like the pic of the grandmother and her grandson. I’m very excited for you and the wife. I pray the Lord will continue to open doors for you to reach more for Christ. Have an awesome time and keep us posted on your journey to the Motherland. May God bless you and keep you. ’06

    • ScottWilliams

      Tony D, that’s actually her granddaughter Chico. Easy mistake to make with all of the cute kids running around, the dresses give them away. :)

      He man we need to get together for lunch… thanks for your prayers.

  • http://www.bloggingfromtheboonies.com/ Michelle

    I’m new to your blog. As a passionate Compassion advocate, I have followed every blogger tour since we started sponsoring in 2009.  I look forward to reading more.  I am 100% convinced of the work Compassion is doing.  While I don’t know if the Lord will ever allow me to see CI in action in Africa, these posts are my opportunity to get a glimpse into what is going on in the field.  I’m praying for all of you and eagerly anticipating the rest of the posts! 

    • ScottWilliams

      Thanks for stopping by & for your faithfulness, it means a lot to the bloggers. I agree w/ you on what Compassion does… it’s real deal.

      Keep stopping by, posts are coming.

  • http://twitter.com/PensieveRobin Robin Dance

    As a previous Compassion blogger, I especially appreciate hearing your perspective about the pastors; I’m not sure I’ve ever consciously considered how a church with a Compassion project is viewed by other churches.  It’s wonderful to hear that it’s a unifying factor and I’m going to look forward to reading questions you’re asking that might not have been considered before.  Your pictures made me smile–I can tell you were capturing stories in the making.  My favorite might be “Lookout out the door,” but all of them reach me to the core.

    Praying for all of you (and that you and your luggage are reunited SOON!)
    :)

    • ScottWilliams

      Thanks for your kind words and for your perspective… Great experiences today as well. will be sharing soon. Just united with my luggage. Yes!

  • B-a-r-b

    Hi Scott!
         I am so blessed and excited for you and Lakendria to be in the Motherland.  Our first Compassion girl  lives in Tanzania and our other two girls live in Rwanda. (a deep move of God on our hearts after seeing Hotel Rwanda)  I can’t tell you just how much we love Compassion and it’s ministry to children and families with needs across the globe.  I can’t wait to follow you on this trip….but more than anything, I’m praying that your readers are moved by God Himself to adopt children from Tanzania and other Compassion countries.  May we all see what we can do and why we are here, for such a time as this.

    • ScottWilliams

      Wow… that’s awesome to hear. LaKendria and I are going to sponsor a child from Tanzania as well.

  • Anonymous

    I love those photos and the stories behind them. Thanks for sharing your spirit with so many people! I’ll be following the blog all week. 

    • ScottWilliams

      Thanks for checking in and I’m glad you connected with the pictures and stories… Honored to be able to share.

  • http://About.me/marcmillan Marc Millan

    Incredible pictures and experience so far bro, I am a supporter of Compassion International with my wife, we LOVE what they are doing, there cause cannot be mentioned enough.
    Love the pictures, keep us posted please.
    M_

    • ScottWilliams

      Thanks Marc… Compassion does a great job, it’s a great ministry. I’ll keep you posted with pics.

  • Jill Foley

    Your photos are beautiful. I am here this week because of your trip to Tanzania. As a long time sponsor and advocate with Compassion, I love the glimpses these trips provide us into the work and ministry of Compassion. You are in my thoughts and prayers this week and I look forward to reading more about your experiences all week.

    • ScottWilliams

      Jill, thanks for stopping by…  I love seeing new friends. glad I could provide some insight.

  • Christine

    Making the photo of the grandmother my desktop background! Want to be reminded what joy and love truly looks like!

  • http://impressyourkids.com ohamanda {impress your kids}

    I love what you said about the churches uniting over the Compassion center. How cool that God uses it to reach kids, families AND churches!

    Thanks so much for sharing your trip with us! Praying for you all this week!
    a

  • http://omagento.com/ Leana Boothe

    however today was also Energizing, because… well I’ll get to the energizing part in a moment.

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