The Lord’s Resistance Army plagued parts of the north of Uganda for many years. This band of rebels brought much suffering and death to many village communities. Some of the stories told by survivors are of brutality at levels hard to imagine. Children were a particular target of the LRA and many have been deeply traumatised. One such was David** who came to Mto Moyoni* for help. An Aim worker at Mto Moyoni writes…
On the day David walked into Mto Moyoni he began to share about his life. At thirteen, the Lord’s Resistance Army rebels came to his village. His father and mother tried to run away with him and his siblings but they were found in the forest. Then in front of his eyes his parents were brutally killed, together with all his brothers and sisters.
David lost the will to live. Deeply traumatised with no hope left and with a bad head wound, he was cared for at the home of his uncle. He struggled through life for ten years, seemingly without hope, a future, or the ability to receive love and to engage in relationships.
In his early twenties he came to Mto Moyoni and followed seminars in the transformation program. He began to see that forgiveness is key to his healing, but he simply could not forgive. Jesus was there to lead him through but he had lost the ability to trust anyone anymore.
“When he at last spoke, we saw a free man, with joy in his heart and fully alive in Christ!”
Then, after a long struggle, David made a decision to forgive, to let the killers go. In tears on his knees he asked God to forgive him for holding his bitterness and anger in his heart all these years. He then began to revel in God’s unconditional love for him. His whole countenance changed. He chose life again and dared to believe in a future. Immediately God was there to comfort, heal and reveal himself in a deeper way. There was joy instead of bitterness, acceptance instead of loneliness. What mercy, what grace!
When he at last spoke, we saw a free man, with joy in his heart and fully alive in Christ!
* Mto Moyoni (Swahili for “river in the heart”) is a place of spiritual, emotional and physical refreshment. Situated on the banks of the Nile in Njeru, Uganda, Mto Moyoni seeks to provide a safe place for leaders to receive healing of their hearts, through seminars, conferences, counselling and prayer.
** Names have been changed to protect privacy.