Why AsOne?

Why AsOne?  What would cause me to have a fervent desire to invest my time, resources and prayer into this particular ministry when there are a plethora of other great causes out there?  Daily my husband and I have the opportunity to support, through various avenues, numerous Kingdom building endeavors.  So why choose AsOne?  This question is better answered in a (rather lengthy) yet purposeful response.  Bear with me.


The road to my involvement began years ago when God drew my attention to a young man on my son’s soccer team.  I was drawn to the tenacity this young man had for the game.  Throughout the time of getting to know him and eventually seeing him as a “third son,” I realized he had the same tenacity for growing in knowledge and love of Jesus and desiring to make a marked difference in the world by empowering others.  That young man became one of the founders of AsOne Ministries.  Andrew. While I know this ministry is not about Andrew or any other one person, it IS about being conduits for His purpose.   So just as my relationship with Andrew began on a soccer field where footwork is vital, I have seen the scripture of Romans 10:15 lived out in his life and countless others involved in AsOne.

                 “And how shall they preach unless they are sent?  Just as it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings of good things.’”   Or as the Message Bible states, “A sight to take your breath away!  Grand processions of people telling all the good things of God!”

What a word picture!  Something we would normally find stinky and dirty….feet.  Yet God tells us in His Word that the feet of those that bring His good news of hope and love are beautiful!  I have seen lives transformed- men, women, and children of Africa- many of whom don’t even have shoes,  ironically.  But because of the selfless love of those that choose to travel thousands of miles and give up all of the modern conveniences of daily living in America to deliver education, encouragement, support, and resources in order to equip their African brothers and sisters for lives of sustainability and promise, this verse is lived out.  Just one example is the women in the Amaka project who have been offered a way out of prostitution and are being given the opportunity for a future and committing their lives to Christ. 


Their children, the future, and next generation, now have a chance at learning and contributing to their community.  I embrace the fact that the goal of AsOne is to offer a “hand-up” not “hand-out” with sustainability as the goal.  And at the core of it all is the desire to build relationships and show unconditional love. I have witnessed a number of individuals invest their time and talents stateside because they too believe in the mission of empowerment.  Being part of this contagious enthusiasm is a blessing.  I am often moved to tears as I pray for AsOne.  The faces of the children being educated at Tendo and their pure joy and excitement drive me to continue to ask God’s blessing on all those involved.

It is a privilege to play a (very) small part in the ministry of AsOne.  The impact is real.  The impact is measurable.  The impact is eternal. 

Uganda Changed Me

As I sit in the Amsterdam airport I take some time to reflect on the story now written into my life from the last two months. And I say written into my life, and with permanent marker, because I no longer look/feel/act the same as I did back in January. In Uganda, I saw people genuinely loving others and taking real time to be together in community. I let my internal clock slow down to allow for living in the moments of life. I worshiped in and inhabited humble settings at night in which the text from Matthew, “for where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I with them,” resonated as true as ever. I danced. I sweat. I cried. I felt love, and I also loved.

However, despite these things, I also witnessed struggle, heartache, physical pain and other things. There are many battles that people in Uganda face every day, and heck, the rest of the world has its own battles as well. What battles are you facing now? Or better yet, who do you know that can pick you up? And maybe even better yet, who can you uplift today, who can you give encouragement, who can you love better today? How can we all love better today, and how can that mentality last?

One recent evening reading through Romans with my pal, Henry, I came across the text that spoke to me on a here and now, social level. The words that popped: Endurance. Encouragement.

“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 15: 5-6.

Endurance. What does it mean?

Endurance is something describing lasting energy, and God gives us this endurance – the necessary energy – to pursue others in love. Just like running a long race isn’t done by training for a sprint, even building endurance takes a different kind of training. It’s one of those “you can’t hang up the old baseball glove until the first day of the season next year,” kind of a thing. Follower-of-Jesus type endurance is something even maintained or better yet a “toss on some plates and do 3 sets of 10 for them legs” kind of maintenance worked on over a lifetime. As I look to follow Jesus more and more I need to remember that not only does he want to train me, but he also wants me to be FOR others. And I want to even leave the training up to Him. That is where our encouragement comes in.


Encouragement. What does it mean?

For some reason, the word encouragement to me never held biblical weight until recently, and I have to say, I’m loving it like McDonald’s because it has made things simple, beautiful, and simply beautiful. It’s a “great job”, or “you’re awesome, just saying”, or “I love you”, etc. It has allowed people to love people for being people, being created by the same God. And it even means to surrender our Christian agendas to instead just L-O-V-E people with deep, compassionate love. I want to be an encourager of people, agenda-less. Because being agenda-less is true love. A love that even perseveres into someone’s core. (I read a book by Rob Bell called Velvet Elvis during the last month in Uganda, that I encourage you to read, and I loved how it finished by talking about this agenda surrender.)


Altogether, this scripture finished with a single body of people coming together as one. Because together, aren’t we stronger as one? Aren’t we ensuring that love has a greater chance to prevail when we think of becoming one? I think so. And I’ll even first join a group that already is out there, and then our group will join another group, and then even that group will join with another group of similar size, and then, etc. etc. you are getting the hint. It’s an enduring group of encouragers and those living for Jesus.

So what do I take from Uganda?

I have new favorite memories to keep forever, I have a bigger heart that trusts the Lord for the uncomfortable, I have a new love for the concept of a three-passenger motorcycle ride, I have a greater understanding for just how much education is an asset worthy of my investment for kids and teenagers alike in Uganda, and overall, I have many stories to share with all of you.

You see, Uganda isn’t a place so far from home now. It’s a place where emotions once stored up back in January in anticipation of what to expect translated into a two month outward expression of love in community with people I now call friends, brothers, sisters, and mothers. It’s a place I look towards and smile because of how they understand the meaning of taking care of a neighbor. It’s a place full of people loving the Lord. It’s a place of people waiting to be empowered. It’s a place with many local communities doing right. It’s a place that even might take your heart, and then even your body too someday.