I used to think of myself as a ‘loner’ Christian – me and Jesus against the world. I have since discovered that being a loner can be….well….. a little….er……lonely?

Particularly when you are living in a completely different culture, trying to learn to speak a completely different language, and fighting most of your battles completely alone. In a physical sense of course – thank God for the Spirit of Jesus who means that I am never completely alone – and without whom I wouldn’t have started the race, let alone be confident of finishing it.

Perhaps that is why the support of Christians, good people of no faith, and J10:10 sponsors now means so much to me.

Two of my favourite Christians are the most excellent Reverend Will Gibbons of St. Mark’s Newtown, Wigan, and his unnaturally small and loud wife Anna. Will, Anna and I met when we all did an Alpha Course together in Aberystwyth in 2004. Will became a Christian about 3 weeks before I did, loves Jesus and is now a serving vicar. I became a Christian, love Jesus and remained a loud-mouthed ass. But an ass saved by grace. Thank God.

As most readers know we opened the ‘Hospital in the Hills’ in the remote village of Kigazi some six weeks ago – a triumph so unlikely it can only be of God. The Hospital complements the Health Centre, water projects and Nursery that we have operated there since 2010/11. And we know that this is only a small part of the journey that we have undertaken in God’s strength.

The next two things that we have to do in Kigazi are to build a small external kitchen at the Hospital so that relatives’ patients can prepare food for them. We also need to improve the diets of children at our nursery. A complete lack of green vegetables means a severe vitamin D deficiency in most childrens’ diets….which means that their eyesight, and subsequently their school-work, suffers. So we want to plant a vegetable garden and do community outreach to explain why diet is so important for kids.

And in an act of real generosity Will’s church is using its Harvest Festival to raise money to help us do these things. Have a look at the video  that Will cleverly and professionally put together from the random nonsense that I sent him.

And you know what really matters, what really resonates with me? Not the money that people will generously give (though I’m grateful!) – but the fact that I feel supported, prayed for, and part of a ‘team’ effort in this part of the work.

Thank you St Marks, thank you Will and Anna, thank you Lord Jesus. I am of good heart. Cheers for that.