Back from Kenya

Hi all,

I returned home from Kenya May 24 and wanted to write a quick note to you all (see facebook for photos).

As those who were part of the trip have reflected together on what happened, we feel confident about 2 things: 1) We were successful in our mission, 2) there is a LOT left to process.

Specifically, we were successful in meeting the 4 objectives we set out to accomplish:

  1. discern their hunger — it is clear that there is a genuine hunger in a fair amount of people in the area
  2. feed the hunger — I think 30+ hours of our time there were spent in teaching the word, answering biblical questions, and having them act on what they learned
  3. empower them to feed the hunger long-term — some of the leaders have a vision to have some sort of Bible school or training program to teach Christians from Bible studies.  They are already translating some of the material into Swahili (the primary spoken language of Kenya) and Ekegusii (the language spoken by their tribe), and teaching this.
  4. build relationships — there were 4 of us who went down there to minister (Chris, Jack, myself, and Emily [a friend of Chris’s from Nairobi]).  I think all of us had very different ministries and connected with people in different ways, but there were definitely relationships built.

So, I think there were some really positive things, though there were/are a lot of things left to process and discern.  For instance…

  • intense poverty and struggles just to survival
  • substantial lack of Bibles and Bible knowledge
  • a culture that is significantly at odds with the Bible in multiple areas
  • people who deal in underhanded ways, while professing Christ
  • how do we discern the spiritual vs. physical in various situations?
  • etc.

Finally, here are a few glimpses of the Kenyan life we experienced during our stay:

  • animals everywhere — baboons, donkeys, wild dogs in the middle of the road as we drove; a hen laying eggs in our bedroom; etc.
  • mud houses with tin roofs as the norm
  • meals cooked over wood fires, taking 3 hours to prepare
  • kids, kids, and more kids–everywhere (I was told by a few sources that the town where we stayed has the highest reproduction rate in the world…maybe 10 kids per couple?)
  • 3 differing answers to the same question…this pretty much happened all the time, and sometimes it was the same person who gave different answers to the exact same question!…I think this was due somewhat to language difficulties, but not sure if there were other reasons for it.

Thanks for caring and praying!