Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Superhero Undies

Three older boys got some superhero undies
along the way to finding these younger boys.
Right across the street from a little local food restaurant in Kabalagala is the entrance to a slum. I’ve been into the mouth of this place for chapatti and rolex before but never alone and never too deep. As I turned the corner, people almost immediately started commenting about the lone muzungu meandering down the lane. How far do I go before I should really turn back? I wondered. One man realized I was giving things away and he demanded a gift for himself. He wouldn’t take my word that the gift was not fit for him, but instead for little boys. He said, “I’m a little boy.” Finally, I popped a size 2T pair of Superhero undies out of the bag and asked if they would fit him. He quit pestering me.

A nearby old man asked what I needed and I said, “lots of little boys.” After the words escaped my lips I realized how the comment sounded. Luckily, I wasn’t in America and the phrase had no ill meaning. I’ve met several moseas (old men) who truly have the best interests of their neighborhoods at heart so…off I went. He led me deeper into the slum and around a corner – being careful to remember where I was and not to go too far. There they were…10 little boys just waiting to see what I was going to pull out of my bag.

They gathered themselves onto the step in front of a closed business and the mosea excused himself for the errand he had been on before being interrupted. Two mothers sat behind a grass screen blocking the sun. They looked on with amusement. I handed each boy three pair of undies that seemed close to his size as each said thank you in his best English.  I told the children that there was a lady in America who gave this gift and that we want them to know that Jesus loves them. I told the boys about the armor of God, more specifically the belt of truth, and asked that when they put their new underwear on they should remember the story.

And to Joyce, the lady who gave me all her gift cards with just a few dollars left on each, I say thank you. You can make a difference with even the smallest gift too.