Saturday, July 26, 2014

A Good Sport

There was only one day I liked P.E.  It was that time the teacher said, "I have grading to do. You don't have to suit out, just use this time to study."

I'm fairly certain that God wired me in such a way that I am incapable of feeling the adrenaline rush or "runner's high" that others speak of.  

I am also fairly risk-averse, which means I don't like to try many things which might hurt me (including standing in the way of an oncoming ball.)

This explains why I amazes me to see so many children excited about using their free time to: sweat, do something that is new and perhaps uncomfortable for them, and throw their entire bodies into it. 

On Thursday, Robert led a 2 1/2 hr lacrosse clinc for 100 middle school students at the school at Pastor Henry's church. It is their final exam time for this term, and they were free from 11-2 between exams. Let me say that again: this was not their P. E.  This was their free time!  They were so excited about this new game equipment that even the teachers came (during their break!!!). 
He showed them a picture of the Ugandan National Lacrosse team and they were amazed. When he told them about the Crane's two victories, they cheered. Then he asked for volunteers. The girls and the boys all wanted to try. The teachers wanted in too, so they formed their own team!  
No need for shirts vs skins... This was uniforms vs suits!
I wish I could attach a video ( it has been raining here, and the wifi is tricky!) so that you could hear 100 kids laughing and shouting and cheering with delight. 

By now, one of the teachers, Joseph, was all over it. He ran to get a whistle and began refereeing. 

And then the rest of the students (grades 1-5) came over. The ones who stayed inside were hanging out the windows. 

They all had an incredible time!  Robert even let the little kids line up for a turn!  
They gave up free time to try something new. They released stress from exams. They laughed and played with each other and their teachers. They connected with a boy from America. And they were inspired. Many of them picked up the game quickly, and one of the teachers said to me, "who knows?  You may be looking at some players for the next world championships for Team Uganda!"  

Fun. Day. 

Through another connection Robert made to an American family who has been living here in Jinja for 9 years, he was invited to do another clinic this morning.  There is, literally about 200 yards from our hotel, a home for 14 street children.  They are all boys, ages 11-17. A perfect crowd!  
Once again, the adults had a blast too!  The man in red is Fred, the "uncle" of the home. 
We brought our new friend Ryan, who is a soccer player. After awhile of lacrosse (he was a trooper as goalie!), he was able to connect with some of the kids by playing their game. 

So grateful for this opportunity to be in the lives of some boys who are desperate for male friendship, and to have another place to visit when we come here!  

Sports is making this happen. Yes, sweat and balls flying at you is apparently a great way to make new friends and begin to open doors to share Jesus!  

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