Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Kenya: Day 1

Today was our first full day at Naomi's Village. It has been all I had hoped for and more. The morning was cool and damp (very different from back home!). What darkness covered during the night, the early sunlight began to unveil--deep, green mountains, vibrant bougainvillea, and those trees (I don't know the name yet) that you picture in your mind when you think "Kenya" dotting the landscape. In a word: lovely. Children's voices sifted through the windows of our room. Sounds of life and love echoed from the courtyard. Each of us made our way downstairs to join the chorus.

Audrey and I had the honor of meeting our sponsored child, Hannah. She is truly a delight. We were invited to be a part of the preschool children's morning devotion. Their cheerful voices recited Psalm 19:1. We listened, we sang, we laughed. Our hearts were full.

We met a church planter and his wife (Isaac and Esther) who are longing to plant a church that is gospel-centered and makes a physical difference in their community. One of the places where this is being fleshed out is in the IDP (internally displaced people) camp. They have a contact there who helps coordinate needs and resources--physical and spiritual. We prayed with a woman (Eunice) whose husband was far away looking for work, barely making enough to make ends meet but not enough to seek medical treatment for her youngest son. The sores on his face looked painful. It appeared to be something that could easily be cleared up with medicine. Eunice went on to tell us how she earned a living before her house was burned and they moved to the IDP camp. She was a seamstress. But, when her workplace was burned, she lost everything--her machine, her supplies. She believed that if she had a machine, she could begin working again and bringing income for their family. What I love about Isaac and Esther is that they care more about a person's spiritual need but not at the expense of their physical need. Tomorrow, we will purchase a sewing machine and supplies, and provide medical care for her son. The money we use will be what you all have donated!! Thank you for making this possible!

We also met an elderly single mother/grandmother who sleeps on the concrete in her home. She has aches and pains in her legs that keeps her from fetching water. She has to rely on "well-wishers" to bring her food and water each day. Here's what's amazing--she loves the Lord. Like, really loves Him, really TRUSTS Him. As she recounted her heartbreaking story there was no hint of resentment in her voice--only peace. That is faith. That is something only the Holy Spirit can do! We prayed with her but I believe I walked away much more strengthened in my faith because of her. With your donations, we are purchasing mattresses, sheets, blankets and a water tank. Praise God!

As our day comes to a close and I think back on all the Lord has shown me today, I can't help but think of James 2:14-17:

What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and filled," without giving them what the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.


I am so grateful to the Lord for His gift of living, breathing faith! May He be praised!

More to come...

6 comments:

Crissy Cano said...

Hi Lauren! I am currently living in Kenya right now and I am so excited for you! I hope you love your time here and I'm so interested to read your thoughts.

Praying for you, sister!

alisha jenee said...

ahhh literally cannot hold back tears every time I pray for yalls team! So excited to see how God uses each of your giftings for His glory! praying for each of you:)

Lisa Polly said...

Oh, so happy that you get to experience life there and the richness of it! If you can would you please ask Isaac about a young man named Samuel at the IDP camp? We had the most awesome experience with him, prayed over him and he said he was going to start attending their church groups on Wednesdays but I haven't heard if Isaac and Joseph are holding him accountable to that. It was just such an incredible part of our trip that I can't get him out of my mind. There was also a lady named Lucy. If you remember to ask about her as well. Their are so many hurting people there and God really opened up all of our eyes while we were there last month! Praying for you all of you to grow closer to God and be able to bless those you cross paths with there and not to miss a moment God has for you! It sounds like you have already had an incredible start! Love, Lisa

@joeyandnatalie said...

So......awesome.......

Sarah said...

Acacia trees -- the ones you think about when thinking about Kenya. I lived there for almost 4 years with my parent who were serving as missionaries (for 13 years). They are beautiful! Enjoy my "home" for me!

Anonymous said...

Thank you.