I wouldn’t wish being cross examined in a Ugandan court on anyone except my enemies, and now I know for sure who they are. Yes, I hope they stand like I did yesterday for eight hours in a witness box directly across from a person shooting arrows of hatred. I can’t really comment on the details of our case but I can describe what I saw and how I felt about it.
There was a time when all was wonderful while we worked with the accused. All the blogs I wrote reporting the amazing progress we all made together supplied the defense attorney with the audacity to point his finger in my face, bug his eyes like a lizard and tell me I am a chronic liar, an unforgivable liar, and awful woman, a crafty woman, and he called me many times a “woman of God” as if he were spitting in my face. I think he called me a liar at least forty times. The way he said it was venomous. He used all his body language to assault me.
I said at one point, ‘your honor, please ask him to stop calling me names”, she said to me with kindness, “he is forming his assessment, it is for the court to decide if it is true, I have not written it down.”
I was never allowed to explain how he was wrong with what he was demonstrating. I became so frustrated that I had to get out my journal. After I answered his stupid question I wrote down the real answer and what he was trying to show. I wrote down prayers. I begged God to help me stand there and endure the slaughter of my character in a court room full of nosy Ugandans who wanted to see why this white woman was in their court. I kept smiling at the guy and it annoyed him so much. I was angry. I endured this abuse for hours because I know the pile of evidence we have to prove what I am accusing in this court room.
You never know how strong you can be until you are required to do it. At one point it became just too much for me. I am not prone to cry, I’m more likely to get angry, but stop before I get even. But the intensity of the hurt to my integrity exceeded what I could bear. All I could do is feel the hand of God holding me steady, whispering to me, the truth will come out, be patient, trust me, justice will occur. I felt the wrapping of God’s love around my severed bloody heart. I stood in the court room by myself, but I was not alone, I felt the presence of God keep me on task.
At one point I locked eyes with Adams. We had avoided eye contact until then. It was a long stare, but I’ve mentioned before I don’t believe in looking away first to an opponent. When I really wanted to look away I began to pray, “justice will rain down on you, and you will go to prison.” He looked away as if he had been startled.
I’m nothing like Jesus. If he were here today I would be in the back corner just hoping to hear his voice, but never have a chance to hold his hand or look into his face, let alone share stories as friends. In spirit I can have fellowship with Him and I feel the intimacy of our friendship. Yesterday as I stood there against the oppression I think I understood with fresh appreciation what Jesus went through at his own trial before being crucified. He was innocent, beaten beyond recognition, accused, and abandoned. And he did that for His children, for us. He accepted all we ever did or would do wrong to clear our names so we can have a home in eternity. I am going to meditate on this fresh way of understanding this familiar truth today.
I return to court on Friday to be re-examined by my lawyer to clarify all the misleading I was forced to endure by the defense attorney. He will not have the opportunity to speak to me again…ever. I don’t really trust myself with an off the record encounter with him, especially if I am wearing spiky heels. And it is an extreme relief that my protective husband and four big sons are on the other side of this earth because they are furious.
With God anything IS possible, I lived through that lesson in court yesterday. My faith was encouraged because I wasn’t sure I could endure, but God pulled me through it with dignity. I exited the court room at the end of the day smiling, playful, and laughing. This has only just begun.