How Do You Learn?

Have you ever wondered how you learn something?  I hadn’t, until Friday.  Think about learning about a forest. You see pictures, you hear your teacher describe it.  You’ve never seen it.  How does a student living in a slum that has never ventured out of the dirt and tin shacks understand the green expanse of a forest?  How do they understand a lake, a mountain, a large city?  Weird, huh?  It’s all things we take for granted.  We take it for granted because we have the ability to get into a vehicle and go farther than the few miles that surround our house.  The children of Provision Academy in Soweto, Kenya didn’t have this opportunity…until Friday.

Our top-secret mission was finally completed Friday morning.  Because of the gift of a very generous donor, we were able to purchase a van for the school!!!

We arrived in our newly purchased van.  Because we had rented a van all week, no one at the school thought this was unusual.  All the kids assembled in the court yard with the teachers.  They had prepared some songs and posters to start our last day in Soweto.  They even had an American flag hanging (I didn’t have the heart to tell them they had hung it upside down).

Once we informed them that the van to the right (in the picture) was theirs, everyone erupted in cheers!!  We could not have imagined the elation that was shown at our announcement.  We were absolutely floored.  It just reminded us that we have no idea how something we take for granted is truly life changing to someone in Soweto.  These pictures can’t even capture the moment.  We have video that will do a better job, but until I can learn how to edit it and upload it, these will have to do:

Teacher Mary got behind the wheel:

Pastor Samuel was so overwhelmed (and he knew about this for months), that he started crying as he prayed over the van:

The kids then ran all throughout Soweto singing and cheering, carrying the American flag.  Sam said he got quite a few texts right after with people asking about the celebration:

The kids and staff gathered around the van to pray over it and thank God for their blessing:

Truly, these words and these pictures cannot adequately express the joy that the kids and staff showed for this gift.  I can honestly say that I have never, ever witnessed such a celebration.

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