A few months ago I began sponsoring a child in Uganda through Watoto, so when I came across, in a Grapevine store, some necklaces made from magazines by the Ugandan women of Maesese I was curious as to their origins. The young sales clerk told me about Katie Davis and her book Kisses from Katie. This is an amazing story on so many counts that began when Katie Davis was a teenager. For those of us who live in America, it's unbelievable that people are starving and in squalor in other parts of the world. But this book isn't about sadness, it's about love and hope. The love she has for these children and the love they have for the woman they call "Mommy."
Here are a couple of excerpts from the book:
Days were spent learning to communicate, laughing hysterically with my students, and trying to laugh at the frustrations that came with this new job. Afternoons were spent with the children at the orphanage playing tic-tac-toe and hangman in the dirt, having my hair tugged in all different directions, and getting covered in the red dust that I was learning would never wear off my feet.
Every day after school, I walked my kindergarten students home, just as I had walked that little girl home on that particular day. Day after day, I witnesses poverty that was unimaginable. Hungry, naked, fly-covered children lay in the dirt crying for a mother who would never come because HIV had taken her life. I met parents who made cakes of mud and salt to fill their children's bellies because drought made it impossible to grow food.
I am twenty years old and have fourteen children and four hundred more who all depend on me for their care. Who are learning to love Jesus and be responsible adults looking up to me . . . I don't always know where this life is going. I can't see the end of the road, but here is the great part: Courage is not about knowing the path. It is about taking the first step. It is about Peter getting out of the boat, stepping out onto the water with complete faith that Jesus will not let him drown.
We don't have to sell up everything and move to another country to help. There are people out there who are working to to give these children a better life, and through donations to Watoto or Amazima Ministries each of us can make a difference in a child's life and help people like Katie Davis.
You can follow Katie's story on her blog here