and I am SOOOOooooooo out of my comfort zone!
I’m not talking about lions, huts or language barriers… I’m talking about “preparation.” Everyone keeps telling me, “be prepared for the unprepared.” My focus right now is doing a lot of listening.
This will be my first time training in Africa. My church, even my own daughter has been there before, and they’ve been briefing me quite a bit. And I’m in email contact with the people hosting the trainings. The main questions I have are of relevance.
Everyone keeps telling me how Americanized the culture is becoming in the city of Kampala. The adults I’ll be training are English speaking and the kids they work with are being barraged by American Entertainment Media. But I’m still trying to do all I can to collect as much cultural information about the area as possible. I don’t want to teach concepts and methodologies that have no relevance.
I’m thinking I’m going to end up doing something I never do… and that is, I’m NOT going to prepare every minute of the training! (If you know me, you know that’s horrifying for me.) When I train in the US, I spend probably 20 hours in prep for a 90-minute workshop.
I don’t think Uganda is going to require less time, I just think I’m going to have to be less structured. My plan so far is:
- Continue communication with the hosts as much as possible, asking which topics are relevant, talking about my articles they’ve seen that were a help, and ones that weren’t.
- Continue prepping as much as possible, but conceptually, not necessarily every Keynote Slide, so to speak.
- Once I arrive, I’m going to do a lot of listening. I’m going to spend as much time with them, including the beginning of the trainings, gathering information. “How is God impacting people? How are people responding? What ministry methodologies are working? What is not working? What are your perceived struggles?”
- As I gather this information, I’ll respond with some teaching and training that is relevant, but then I’ll go back to where I stay that evening, praying and preparing over what to teach the next day based on what I learned that day.
I really have no idea how this is going to work. I just know that I’m going to be relying on God more than ever! That means less Jonathan, more God… so it will probably be really good.
If you know anyone in Uganda near Kampala, here’s the details of the trainings I’ll be doing:
University youth workers training workshop
Venue: University Community Church (UCF) in Makerere Kikoni
Fee: 20000shs only per person
Dates: 5th and 6th September
Time: 10am to 4pm
Urban Youth Workers conference
Venue: All Saints Church Kampala
Fee: 30000shs only per person
Dates: 9th,10th and 11th September
Time: 10am to 4pm
And if you’ve been there, live there, or know the culture… I’d love any wisdom you have to share.
I’d appreciate your prayers before and during this time! I’m raising all the funds to go there so it doesn’t cost them a dime. Pray for this process.