It’s been an incredibly sad and somewhat scary week to be a teacher. I haven’t been sleeping very much this week, three to four hours a night at the most.
Last night I slept soundly and dreamed that I returned to Uganda. Uganda has been on my heart so much lately. In truth Uganda and my children there have been on my heart since I stepped foot on the plane back to California last July.
I miss my beautiful Ugandan sons with such acuteness that often it’s a physical ache in my heart.
In my dream I was on an airplane descending through the clouds. When the clouds cleared, I looked out my window and Uganda was spread out beneath me. But the landscape wasn’t trees and dirt, it was a painting alive with color. Blues and oranges and greens purples and pinks all teeming with life.
I recognized the artist of the painted land out my airplane window right away. Somehow Tricia Kibler, the amazing artist who comes and teaches my little ones (including her son) art lessons every month, had managed to paint the whole of Africa. I love that things like that seem completely ordinary in dreams.
The splendor of the painted landscape took my breath away and in my dream I began to cry.
My alarm clock woke me and I was surprised to find myself wiping real tears from my eyes. I stood at my bedroom window watching the snow fall, the white world a transfixing juxtaposition to the vibrant Africa of my dream.
I sent Tricia a message telling her about my dream.
Little did I know that just minutes before I’d messaged her, she’d begun to dream up a painting of Africa for me.
This afternoon she brought me a Christmas present and when I unwrapped the painting, I cried for Africa for the second time in the day, this time not just for the beauty of my dream, but for the very real ways God sends assurance that I will return. As Christmas draws near, I’m especially grateful to love a God who speaks to my broken places in such tangible ways.