“Kobusingye” is a Western Ugandan word meaning peace; however, Anitha Kobusingye’s life has been anything but peaceful. Now a graduate student in the counseling program at Harding, Kobusingye is the author of an autobiography titled “Born Anonymous.”
“(She was) born as an orphan, (grew) up in a children’s home, (was) adopted a couple of times, the first time adopted into a slave labor situation. (She) ran away from that situation, and ended up on the streets,” Timothy Westbrook, an assistant Bible professor, said.
Westbrook had Kobusingye in his World Christian class when she was an undergraduate student. He asked her to return and speak to his class on Jan. 23.
“By telling her story, she is giving us a broader perspective of how God works,” Westbrook said. “In her case it’s not the typical move to a mission field (or) apply to a church, it’s a person who can, in hindsight, see God working in her own life. But it took years for her to know Jesus.”
According to Kobusingye, the turning point in her life was when she began attending Cornerstone Leadership Academy, a private Christian high school in Rwanda. It was here that she learned about the love of Christ.
“I think the best way to lead someone to Christ — to change someone — is to love them unconditionally on a deeper level,” Kobusingye said. “Stretching your love to the possibilities of someone questioning you, ‘How come this person loves me despite being an alcoholic, despite being sexually addicted? This person goes beyond that and still loves me for who I am.'”
Growing up on the streets, Kobusingye said she had never experienced genuine love.
“I think the most important point in my book is that it was love that broke my heart,” Kobusingye said. “It wasn’t just like going to church every day or reading the Bible; someone introduced me to Jesus. No. Someone loved me before they even mentioned Jesus. It’s their love that I questioned until I realized that’s the way Jesus was.”
This Christ-like love is evident in how Kobusingye now lives. Eight years ago, Kobusingye began the Lighthouse Children’s Home in Rwanda.
“It’s just like a family where we take in homeless children,” Kobusingye said.
There are now 12 children at the home Kobusingye explained that the home runs on donations.
“People came with different ways to give,” Kobusingye said. “Some people came with just a shirt, some people with just a spoon, some people with anything they could think would be useful.”
It is this selfless giving that Kobusingye wishes to talk about in her next book.
“People who are talented and gifted are giving but sometimes I feel like in the Western world there is still so much that is lacking in the way giving is handled,” Kobusingye said. “In my second book I’m not criticizing how they give or what they give, but to shed a little bit of light of what I’ve seen in my experience of giving.”