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Thursday, April 14, 2016

Stand Out

Have you ever stood out? You know you were visiting a foreign place, whether it is a country, city, new school, new church, new job or whatever. What feelings did you have? What thoughts were going through your mind? Were you scared or excited?

I know when I was in Kenya, I was all of the above and more. That was new territory for me, and man did I stand out. I mean everywhere I went I felt the eyes of people who had just as many questions for me as I had for them. Eyes that were at times piercing, and at other times wondering…who is this guy, what’s he all about, where’s he from?

It’s interesting how we make observations and assumptions about people before we even know them, and many times our observations turn into judgment statements before those judgments have been tested.

I know I often find myself doing that with people from time to time, and that’s why on this particular trip to Kenya, I was so moved by the overwhelming welcome and encouragement from a group of people who knew nothing about me, except that I was a Giant Mazoongu (white dude in Swahili).