Blankets, shoes and school supplies. I’ve never thought twice about my NEED for these items. Yet they are truly a need and a treasure for widows and orphans who received them today in Ouya village. I’m reminded and challenged today by how much I have. Our prayer as a family tonight was that God would continue to grow, stretch, challenge and humble us as we serve along side of some of the very least of these. Whatever is ours is Yours, may you use it for your glory. “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”
Monthly Archives: January 2013
This evening, Lucy and I had walked to our local shop to get some milk for dinner. As I started coming up the stairs back to our apartment I heard a group of girls shuffling their feet pushing one another forward to knock on our door. 7 girls from my Sunday School class unexpectedly showed up at our apartment this evening.
I’ve always heard, if you want to learn hospitality, come to Africa. I’ve seen and learned over the years, that in Kenya you don’t have to call somebody or set a time for someone to come over. I remember thinking before I moved here how much I would love to have visitors and that dealing with that culture issue would never be a problem for me. Well, I take that back. There are some days where it’s almost impossible to get something done because people are coming to the door constantly, to visit, to share news, to ask for prayer or for financial assistance. Sometimes these visits are encouraging, while sometimes the constant need and assistance is draining.
However, I wanted nothing more than to invite these 7 girls into our home. A few weeks ago three of them stopped by, I gave the juice and cookies and they were shy and continued to giggle on the coach every time I talked. I told them that time, that I love having them at my house, but if they come, they need to talk to me, they can’t just giggle the entire time. Of course when I said that…they giggled again. That afternoon the slowly opened up and started to ask me questions…What is America like, what do you eat, is everyone rich….and so on. I’m use to these questions, at times I get frustrated with them. I’m thankful that today our visit with these girls was a little different…
They came in, at first sat shyly on the coach as they looked at one another to talk. I went to the kitchen to get some juice and snacks. When I came back they had lots of questions. But this time, the questions were real questions….
How did you know you wanted to be a missionary?
When will Jesus come back?
What is heaven like?
How do you share your faith?
Fred, Lucy and I sat with these girls for over an hour. I couldn’t help but ask God, why these 7? Why did you bring these girls into our home this evening? These girls have continued to excel in our Sunday School class, they range from 9-12 years old.
Please join me in prayer for these girls. My heart is leading me to a Girls Small Group in my home, doing Bible Studies, learning about girl stuff and finding their identity in Christ.
Most High School students are boarders, so having a consistent Youth Group is difficult as these students study across the country. We have found that it is best to reach High School students during their school breaks by hosting Youth Camps. I believe that ages 9-14 are great to reach the students before they go to High School to help them prepare for boarding life and to influence their morals and beliefs before High School. We reach that age group in Sunday School, but Sunday School ages varies dramatically (3-14), so having a focused age group for a Girls Small Group, might be the answer.
God moved in our home this evening, I’m excited to see where He will continue to lead.
Next week another shipment of 50 aprons will be headed to the states, including 10 children size aprons! Message me if you would like one. At $15/each, these aprons help sustain and provide for widows and their families. Thanks 🙂
I can’t believe Christmas is here and gone already!
Christmas with Fred’s family was a great success! We had all 5 siblings here for Christmas, Fred’s dad and sister Evelyn husband and four children. It was a packed apartment, for three days as we celebrated and visited with one another.
Most Kenyan’s don’t receive gifts on Christmas, they just get excited to eat meat (an uncommon meal because it’s expensive) and they hope for a new dress or outfit. Fred and I decided to ask the sewing school teacher to help make shirts and dresses for the entire family. Everyone was so happy to receive them.
Fred’s three brothers stayed a week longer in Kisumu while they were on school break. It was nice to have them here with us, show them around the city and have some dedicated time to pour into their lives. All three of these guys are great men and respect Fred so much, as he is the oldest child (birth order is very significant in Kenya.) So having them in our home, setting a Christ-like example for them was nothing but enjoyable.
On December 23rd we had a huge celebration in church as we moved into our new property and building. Different groups presented songs, dances, dramas, we had a wonderful meal together, played games and had a gift exchange. The widows and some orphans were transported to Kisumu for this celebration, it was great to have them here with us and celebrate Christmas.
After the rest of the family left last week, Lucy was able to open her presents sent from Grandma and Great Grandma. She LOVES her new dolls! Great choice Grandma, thank you so much!
Christmas was definitely different this year. But it was great to begin new traditions in Kenya. This Christmas season we are thankful for family, both near and far. Even though we couldn’t be with our entire family, we are thankful that the joy of our Savior’s birth dwelt in our home.
Thank you Jesus.
This week Kenya schools started their school year. Fred and I had been in prayer and discussion on which school would be best for Lucy. Lucy has gone to school for three years when she lived in the village, however the standard of education from the village to the city is very different. We wanted the best for Lucy and we weren’t sure what that looked like.
Yesterday we visited a school called St. Anne’s, one of Fred’s groomsmen is a teacher at this school. We had him over for lunch last week and I had the opportunity to ask him a ton of questions. The school has continued to perform high in the nation and region. Nyakwaka, the teacher, said St. Anne’s was most known for it’s Early Education Development. And right now, that is what Lucy needs a lot of. After visiting the school they also ensured us that if needed, Lucy would be able to receive some one-on-one attention to help her catch up.
The school, set up and structure are very different from what she is use to. Her school in the village was taught in Luo, her tribal language, while this school is taught in English. Please help us by praying for her as she starts at this school. Although their are differences, she is thrilled to join school!