I’ve made it- through two whole days in Kenya, however I feel like weeks have passed by already! I had imagined the first couple weeks in Kenya would just feel like a visit because I’ve come for short trips every year. However, today it really started to become a reality that this wasn’t just my home in my heart, but it was now physically my home.
It was a full day of unpacking and furnishing the apartment- and will still will have more work to come tomorrow. I am staying in a two bedroom apartment that use to be James and Vangie’s (Directors of Good News) home for the past 5 years. I’ve stayed here every time I came to Kenya, so I’m very familiar with the home and the area. Fred has been staying at the apartment for the last 6 weeks and will move back in after we are married, he’s rooming with a friend nearby for now. As comfortable as I was with our apartment, I also was aware of some not so strong areas of the apartment. Low water, one toilet didn’t work and the water heater was broken. I was fully prepared to move into the apartment and worry about fixing these things in the future. Little did I know, Fred was working hard to make our home ready and perfect. I was so surprised all of these things were taken care of- great props to Fred :).
Last night we were so tired, so just made some ramen noodles for dinner. So tonight I was a little nervous around dinner time. I had always helped Vangie prepare dinner, but I hadn’t prepared a Kenyan dish on my own since 2006 during my Discipleship Training School. Fred and Edwin (our good friend) were really helpful all day long so I knew they would really be grateful for a Kenyan dish, rather than an American, my specialty! 🙂 Making dinner in Kenya can be very difficult (well, at least compared to throwing in a pizza in the US). But I must say- I rocked dinner tonight! Fred and Edwin were finishing things up around the house, so I was pretty proud of myself for doing it mostly alone. As much as I rocked cooking tonight- they definitely brought their game during clean up time.
We had a great evening together. It’s starting to feel more and more comfortable hear as I adjust to the changes. Although I’m still struggling with slowing down. The last 3 months of my life in the US have been the fastest yet, so to transition to a slower lifestyle here is a bit of a struggle, though I’m trying to find rest in it. Everything takes time here, and no one is ever in a hurry, it’s focused on the person and the relationship rather than the task. By slower, I don’t be lazy, their is nothing I find about this culture to be lazy, just slow and personal.
It makes me reflect on my relationship and time with Christ. So often I go into his presence with an agenda or a mental timer on what I have to do next. I want the Kenyan lifestyle to reflect my desire to be with my God, slow and personal.
Thanks for your prayers during this adjustment period. I didn’t anticipate that the adjusting time would happen so soon, as I had been in Kenya for week trips every year. However, it’s different this time coming to Kenya. It’s permanent and my mind is in it long term rather than short. I think this forces me to confront the adjustments right away. None of this is bad, just a process, a change of thinking, living and doing. I’m looking forward to what Christ is doing in me and through me now and what is to come. Fred loves listening to music- so it was on all day as we were unpacking and a song called “In Me” by Casting Crowns came on and these lines really made me smile as I was unpacking my life in the States to my home in Kenya.
Cause when I’m weak, You make me strong
When I’m blind, You shine Your light on me
Cause I’ll never get by living on my own ability
How refreshing to know You don’t need me
How amazing to find that you want me
So I’ll stand on Your truth, and I’ll fight with Your strength
Until You bring the victory, by the power of Christ in me.
It’s such an honor to be wanted by God. He doesn’t NEED me here in Kenya, but he wants me here. He has called me and designed me to be here, among these people, serving his Children.
I will always be amazed that God chose me to do this work, in all of my weaknesses and inequities it is He who makes me strong and qualified.