Thursday, September 08, 2011


Some days, I really miss Africa.

Admittedly, I miss it every day that I'm not there, but some days it is such a deep missing that it makes an ache deep within me and tears are near to the surface.

Today is one of those days.

I miss a lot of things about Africa, and in particular, Swaziland.

I miss the cheerful children who smile so easily.

I miss the laughter and joyful singing.

I miss the integration of the generations and the respect for the elderly.

I miss shopping at the marketplace.

I miss eating mealie meal pap.

I miss the houses with their cool walls and the thatched roofs unlike any here in Mississippi.

I miss church services that aren't bound by time schedules.

I miss relationships and spending time with friends receiving higher priority than television shows, efficiency, and getting somewhere on time.

I miss the mountains.

I miss sparkling Grapetiser served at restaurants.

I miss the fat, dark, babies with their big eyes riding on their mama, grandma, or big sister's backs.

I miss picking up hitch-hiking grandmas and mothers with children.

I miss bright colors and patterns all thrown together, not worrying about what some fashion or design guru has to say.

I miss monkeys scampering about.

I miss the exuberance of the Swazis and never being told I'm being too loud.

I miss dunking my buttermilk Ouma rusk in a steaming hot cup of rooibos tea.

I miss splashing waterfalls and lush green surroundings.

I miss dancing during church and also at weddings.

I miss a culture that doesn't determine your worth by how small the numbers are on your pants' label.

I miss the sound of rain on the metal roofs.

I miss the camaraderie of missionaries.

I miss spending time with Africans who are dedicated to serving their Lord as they love the precious "least of these" around them.

I miss waving enthusiastically to children alongside the roadway and having them respond enthusiastically.

I miss that Easters and Christmases that aren't uber-commercialized, over-stressed, too-busy affairs.

I miss long prayer times born out of the knowledge that God is really, really needed and really, really our King.

I miss Africa.

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