Sometimes I wonder what was really going through the minds of those Jewish men in the boat with Yeshua, during the storm as he slept. Apart from the limited quotations about them crying out to him to save them, did they maybe look over at him and then one to another, and ask, “Is this a drill?”
Humanity is often called to embrace faith; to walk out boldly and take what rightfully belongs to them. Many times though, the actual implications are not considered.
What does it take to close your eyes and jump off a cliff?
A few years ago, I got a call to write for a new society website in Kampala Uganda. It was called In Kampala (har har!). The site was offering good money and they seemed to be very professional. The run was good enough while it lasted, but I knew even then that this was going to be just a season. I had been here before.
When that call came, I had recently stopped writing for African Woman, another Kampala magazine. I had written for AW for years and I had made a tidy sum over the years. Every month, I would submit one or two or three pieces and they would bring in additional money for gas and milk for the babies and for salon for the Twin.
Like many writers experiencing hidden unemployment, I spent years working for a national newspaper that did not pay enough for my family and I to be financially comfortable. Heck, many writers at these papers keep their jobs just for the address. Little wonder that there’s no real zeal to do transformative journalism; those who are in it for the love of journalism are weighed down by the rest of us idealists who are trapped in a time warp.
So AW and In Kampala and a host of others brought in more than what I was earning at the end of the month at my day job. Moonlighting was the truth!
But this is about faith. When one has been at some station many times in the course of their lives, what seemed to be miracles in the early days, becomes normal. Except that I knew it was not ordinary, see. I knew that this life I was living was different.
I have been writing since Grade school. I filled up those 32-page Visa and Kasuku books and gave them to my classmates to read in Kabinja. I edited the school newspaper in high school and I started writing for national newspapers before I left high School. One would say, then, that I probably had a lot of experience writing so I became an expert.
I have met other Ugandan writers who are better at this craft and they figured out way earlier how to make their skill make money for them. I only moved forward because I kept stepping on the stones ahead of me. In many cases there was no choice but to keep on moving. So I moved.
Something has always told me there’s going to be another gig. Always. That’s faith. When one gig dries up, I am always almost certain another’s around the corner. Somebody’s going to come up and ask for a writer. And among all the awesome writers there are, I am going to be given that gig. For a season.
And I am going to enjoy that ride as long as it lasts.