LBC | Capital celebrated with students, teachers, families and friends as 21 graduates earned a Master of Arts in Contextualized Pastoral Ministry on May 27, 2023, as part of a partnership with the Pastors Discipleship Network in Kampala, Uganda.
One of these graduates, David Graham Tugume (’23), was the recipient of the Servant Leadership Award, which is presented to a master’s degree graduate “who has evidenced outstanding scholarship, a servant’s heart and leadership skills.” As he received his award, Tugume shared the inspirational testimonial below.
Hands: Some say this is our superpower.
That when, in the beginning, God created, He had such variety and detail that He put in the land animals.
- From the glorious Eagle of the air—He gave it such sharp eyesight.
- But then He also made the mighty Rhinoceros, which has poor eyesight, but very keen hearing.
- He also made the great African Elephant, whose famous memory is only aided by his keen sense of smell.
- He also made the small, gentle Spider that will spin delicate webs using the delicate touch of her feet.
- All creatures great and small, the Lord God made them all.
But on the sixth day, God created human beings Imago Dei.
He gave us, at the end of our upper limbs, these intricate tools that help us to do things—our hands.
And that’s just the thing. You see, hands are what set human beings apart from all the other creatures in the world. We outrank them by the dexterity of our hands.
Hands can be used:
- To wound or to heal
- To tear or to mend
- To harm the weak or to comfort and embrace them, and point them to Christ.
Over the past two years, we’ve heard plenty about the head, the heart and the hands. Two years ago, I came to PDN with certain beliefs I held close to my heart, but after exposing them to:
- The peer review of this remarkable guild in whose distinguished presence we sit today,
- And to the patient guidance of our fabulous professors and faculty who have been nothing but servant-leaders themselves,
- And under the lens of the kaleidoscope that is the collective literary experience of some of the world’s greatest authors who sought to challenge and educate our minds…
We all have been empowered at LBC to walk away from lies and abuse and manipulation, and to embrace whatever is true and noble and right and pure and of good report. To whatever is excellent and praiseworthy, we now set our affections on such things as these.
Jesus transformed the world with 12 men, you know.
In this Church Age, the transformation of Africa is all but guaranteed when we “Christians” become true disciples, when perhaps 21 new graduates this fine May morning pledge themselves in a new way to adhere to an old sacred rhythm—not just of hearing the Word of God but also as “reflective practitioners,” thoughtfully and diligently doing what it says.
Beautiful are the feet of those that bring good news. But also, beautiful are the hands—hands that heal, comfort and bind the wounded, soothe the broken-hearted at-risk children around us, and like Jesus, hands that write in the sand for equity and justice for the oppressed and the poor in our context.
Perhaps most beautiful are the hands that give so that this work of God can continue.
On behalf of the Cohort 7 class of 2023, we are eternally grateful to you all for your sacrifice.
And finally, to my distinguished cohorts, if we are going to participate in the transformation of Africa in our day, these three things MUST remain. The head, the heart and the hands, but the greatest of these … is the hands.