My Friend Joseph

We all crave for some sort of sense that we’re creating value. As I spent months in Garneton, Zambia, I realized what I was missing was that same sense. I wanted to feel like I was contributing, or producing something in my life.

The simple act of helping out at the LifeSong orphan school did just that. As the day began I started reaching out to kids who looked open to conversation with someone. I told them my name and they said theirs – things that everyone does around the world.

I remember meeting another kid whose name was Joseph. We shared the same name! I got the chance to join Joseph and his friends during class, and even teach for a bit. We talked about the workbench, and how it was used for carpenters and people who worked with their hands.

My friend Dean Leonard, my Brother, and I volunteered to help when a group from Fort Worth came. We each joined in singing, dancing, and coloring with the kids. It was a fulfilling time – something I had been missing during my time in Zambia.

I recall trying the African food, including fried caterpillar – a Zambian tradition. I placed one in my mouth slowly and hesitatingly. I began to chew. It felt chewy in my mouth – almost like chicken but chewier, not actually that bad.

Often I’ve faced moment like this – moments in which I feel like I’m not contributing and not being productive. Many times the best thing to do is to just spend time with people, have fun, build into their life and learn together.

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