Home About Me About Kenya News Guestbook

<<<Back to the News Archives

April 2007 News Archive

 


Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, April 28, 2007

News_Entry

Namgoi Baptist Church

 

Last Sunday Henry and I visited the new church that was started as a result of the problems at FBC, Kapsabet.  Namgoi Baptist Church meets in one of the vacant rooms of the former medical center where we also have Bible study every week.  We had wonderful fellowship and a great service.

 

Speaking of FBC, Kapsabet, next week I believe some men from BCOK (Baptist Convention of Kenya) will come to help take care of the situation there.  Please continue to pray for that church and wisdom for us.

 

In a few days I’ll be going to Nairobi to visit Honey Care Africa, the group that will train the people how to take care of bees and hives and even come here to collect the honey which they then process and package to sell in Kenya and to other countries.  I believe it is the answer to my prayers about finding something substantial to help increase the family income in this area.  We shall see what God has in store.

 

The necklaces they made contributed a little, but there is no market here because tea estates don’t attract tourists.  I took some to Nairobi, the tourist capital, but the Maasai Market has a monopoly on anything hand-crafted in Kenya.  The bags and purses crocheted out of plastic bags are made very slowly because the people don’t have much money to shop and, therefore, don’t bring home many plastic bags.  I found a store owner in Nandi Hills who seemed interested in them, but he wasn’t able to help us at this time.  He said to come back, so I will!

 

I realized something recently.  When I lived in Lawrenceville, GA, and drove to Snellville every day to work at FBC, I encountered 28 traffic lights in 12 miles.  Here we drive 6 hours to Nairobi without seeing one traffic light until we reach the heart of the city.  Even in Kisumu and Eldoret there are no lights.  Actually, let me clarify that.  There are a couple of lights, but they’re turned off because there were more accidents with them than with the “I-was-here-first-so-you’d-better-wait” mentality.  I’m always amazed at how well it all works out with only the occasional sound of a horn, but it certainly wouldn’t work in the U.S.

 

We are very busy praying and making plans for the mission team coming from First Baptist Church, Snellville, in July and August.  The people here are so excited to know that Christians in America are praying for them and want to help them grow in the Lord.  Please join us in prayer as we seek the Lord’s perfect will for each day of their visit.

 

It is now Saturday afternoon and I’ve just returned from the Bible study at Chemartin and had to tell you about our first literacy class.  I had given out Bibles several months ago and wondered why they weren’t bringing them to the study.  That’s when I found out so many cannot read or write.  I researched what materials might be available to meet this need, and found that for many reasons the government program was not well received.  Therefore, we’ve designed our own course of study using the Bible as the textbook.  Today we started by teaching them to write their names and the word Mungu (God in Kiswahili).  Then we’ll teach them Bible verses to read and write, which means they’ll eventually memorize them.  The first verse on the list is John 3:16.  They seemed to enjoy it and were so appreciative, that we decided we’d better be prepared for more students next week.

 

Thank you for your prayers, love and support.  God is blessing us through your faithfulness!

 

Mungu awabariki!

Judy

 

 

Again, there's no wood in the framework.  First they laid bricks, and then covered them with concrete.  The wooden cabinets, stove and refridgerator will fit within the brick/concrete frames.  There will also be cabinets on the walls.
 
The window over the sink looks ragged because they decided it wasn't quite the right size.  So they removed the iron bars and frame to redesign the opening.

 

 

The water tank in this picture is the second one located in the front, below the house and will be underground.  It's twice the size of the one behind the house.  There was supposed to be only one very large tank, but the position of the house and the solid bedrock made it impossible to build it larger.  Therefore, we added another tank which will have pumps to move the water from it up to the higher tank so gravity can bring water into the house.  Also, when the upper tank fills up, it will overflow into the lower tank.  The combined tanks, when full, will contain enough water to last 3 months in case of drought.  Bottled water is also readily availble in the towns.  The chute is used to lower cement and other materials down to the workers in the tank.

 

The other picture is the guest bathroom.  After the walls were plastered, they chisled out places for the pipes.  Along the wall I hope you can see where they chisled into the concrete floor to lay the drainage pipes.  Once all the tile is installed, the pipes will be hidden.

 


Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, April 21, 2007

News_Entry

From the Mountain Top to the Valley

 

Last week began with a glorious Easter Sunday service which lasted all day.  A man was saved on Wednesday and I was able to witness to an Indian man on Friday and Saturday.  These were all mountain-top experiences watching the Lord work and praising Him.  Then, as many of you know, God doesn’t allow us to remain on the mountain top basking in His glory for long.  The work is down in the valley below.

 

This week began in the valley.  Last Sunday, April 15, Henry and I visited Irimis Church which is in the Kapsabet area.  This church had been thriving with a full house for worship and large children’s Sunday School.  But our hearts were broken at what we found.  Only two people were there:  Dorothy Sang, a Godly woman, and a pastor friend of hers, Edwin, whom she had asked to come help the church.  The pastor, Peter Bett, had gone home a few weeks before and didn’t say when or if he was returning.  This is the result of the influence of the people at the church in Kapsabet where the enemy is in control.  How hard it is to wait when we continue to see the destruction caused by their rebellion.  Every time we encounter another problem I ask the Lord, “Is it time for the SWAT team yet?” and He answers, “No.  Wait.”  He must have more hidden things to reveal concerning the situation.  So we continue to wait.

 

The valley experience continued on Wednesday at Temso where the man was saved the week before.  No one came to unlock the church for Bible study and only two ladies showed up.  The first one to arrive was 40 minutes late and the other one arrived about 30 minutes later.  Remember, time in Africa is not controlled by a clock.  I recently bought a Golden Bells Hymnal in English at a Christian bookstore in Eldoret and had it with me.  When Esther arrived we started singing hymns.  When Dolvine arrived she joined us.  We sang for about an hour outside with five children sitting on the grass listening.  The valley became more beautiful.

 

Thursday was a very rainy day so I wasn’t sure who would be at the Bible study in Kapsabet since everyone must walk.  One lady walks at least one hour from her home, but she came.  We’re still meeting in a former medical clinic which is now used as very small apartments.  We ended up with six of us plus one young man in a wheelchair.

 

His name is Jeffrey.  After I arrived I watched him wheeling himself down the paved road and then turning onto the very stony, muddy driveway to where we were.  None of the ladies had arrived yet (Africa, remember?), so I walked over to talk to him.  Thank the Lord he knew a little English, and with my little Swahili we had a nice conversation about the Lord and his family.  I found out he came just to meet me.  He’s 17 years old but only in Standard 6, which is equivalent to 6th grade in the U.S.  Both legs are crippled and there were other signs of cerebral palsy.  Both parents are dead, probably from AIDS which is the usual cause of death resulting in countless orphans.  Jeffrey and his three siblings live with an uncle and he attends a school for handicapped children.  His clothes were old and torn.  The wheelchair was made from an old frame with a white, plastic patio chair bolted in the place where the original vinyl seat and back used to be and was badly in need of repair.  He stayed for the Bible study, sang with us and I prayed for him.  When we finished, it started raining harder, so we sang some more until it stopped and everyone could walk home or wheel home, hopefully, before it began again.  The valley is full of mixed emotions.

 

Miscellaneous events of the week:

  • My dog Bush (not the President; he was a bushy, furry puppy) was “fixed,” but we’re still friends.  The price was 2,500 Kenya shillings or $36.00.  Not a bad deal, right?

  • I’m sewing curtains for my house—all African prints full of animals—a must see.

 

House update:

  • They’ve begun laying the floor tiles after chiseling out the spaces in the floors and walls for the plumbing.  I was wondering how they would do that.  They did the same thing for the electrical wiring before plastering.

  • The outside stones are being finished by chiseling out enough of the concrete between the stones to apply a finer consistency to make it smooth.  The next step is to use a wire brush to clean off the excess concrete from the stone surface, a lot of hard work by hand.

  • More pictures next week, if I remember my camera.  It seems I’m always leaving in a rush lately and the camera is left on the table.

 

Please continue to pray for the churches in Kapsabet and now Irimis.

 

Mungu awabariki!

Judy

 


Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, April 14, 2007

News_Entry

Easter Sunday 2007

 

What a day!  The service began at 10:00 a.m. at Chemartin.  An hour later we processed down to the creek for baptism accompanied by drums and singing.  It was a 30-minute walk.  At a bend in the creek they had dug out an area large enough for baptizing and erected a small dam so it would fill up to about waist deep.  Ten ladies were baptized to the sound of much rejoicing.  Then we walked back to the church, uphill all the way on a very hot day, arriving around 1:00.  The service continued with singing, prayers, preaching and dedication of children, and then ended up with the Lord’s Supper.  The “bread” was pieces of cookies, and the grape juice was served in individual black cylinders that formerly contained camera film.  That part of the service ended around 3:00, followed by a lunch of red beans and rice.  I was home by 4:30.  How’s that for a morning service?!

 

It was such a blessing in that it was all centered around the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and there was not even a hint of the Easter Bunny, candy and eggs anywhere in Kenya!  Bwana asa fiwe!  Praise the Lord!

 

Wednesday was Bible study at Temso.  We hadn’t quite started when the father of one of the ladies came in the back door.  He sat down and the Lord led me to talk to him about his salvation.  Boy, was he ready!  When we got to the prayer, he was in tears, something I’ve rarely seen even at funerals, especially among the men.  He was gloriously saved!  I’d brought an English Bible for someone else who didn’t come, so I gave it to him.  He stayed for the Bible study and followed along with us as we continued in the Gospel of John.  He even joined in the discussion.  He and his wife are supposed to be in church this Sunday.  His name is William Ngetich and his wife is Ann.  Please pray for them.

 

This is the third man who has dropped in on us at Temso.  Kristofer Ruto and Joseph Kimayo are the other two.  I saw Joseph and talked with him Wednesday on my way home.  He’s supposed to be at church Sunday and so is Kristofer.  Please pray for all three of these families.

 

Kenya is heavily populated with people from India, most of whom are Hindu.  The Lord has brought several of them across my path: the lady who cuts my hair, the lady from whom I was buying beads and her husband, a man who owns an electronics store, and most recently Deepen Bhatt who owns the store in Eldoret where I’ve bought my generator.  I was there yesterday to pay for it and make arrangements for him to deliver it and again today to coordinate the delivery with some appliances from another store.

 

Yesterday I sensed a tender heart and he shared how he grew up in England and went to a Christian school (Anglican).  He enjoyed the stories about Jesus.  That opened the door to plant seeds of the gospel.  Today we talked even more.  I remembered that I have Ravi Zacharias’ book, Walking from East to West: God in the Shadows, which is his story about how he found Jesus and was saved in India.  I asked Deepen if he’d like to read it and he excitedly said, “Yes.”  Then he asked me to pray for him, which I excitedly did!  I can’t wait to return with the book and see how God saves him!

 

Needless to say, this has been an exciting week after several weeks of waiting on the Lord for many things to happen.  FBC, Kapsabet is one of those things.  Again Linus Kirimi and Ojienda were not able to meet with us because Linus’ wife’s uncle died Easter Sunday and his funeral was Tuesday.  That’s two deaths within a week for his family.  So I’ve penciled him in for next week.  God has a reason for continually postponing this meeting and some day we’ll find out why.  I want to go in with a SWAT team, but that is obviously not the thing to do.  Waiting on the Lord means trusting Him and allowing Him to perform His perfect will in His perfect timing.  It means not getting in His way or going ahead of Him.  It means PATIENCE and FAITH!  Please keep praying for this situation.

 

The long rains have finally begun a month late, and that means my water tanks will fill up.  It also means the dust is gone and the roads are muddy.  It means the people can plant their crops and there will be food.  It means the extremely hot weather of the past several weeks is gone and it’s now quite cool.  It means the tin roof on the guest house will stop popping and banging when the sun rises and sets.  It means don’t go anywhere without an umbrella.  It means the fan on my computer won’t come on as often.  It means “God’s in His heaven and all’s right with the world.”  It means God keeps His promise He made after the flood in Noah’s day:  “As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.”

 

We serve an awesome God!

 

Thank you for your prayers!

Mungu awabariki!   God bless you all!

Judy

 


Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, April 7, 2007

News_Entry

How God Works

 

Last Sunday, Palm Sunday, I was told that all the churches would be meeting together at Koisagat for the morning service, which would be followed by a pastors’ meeting to make plans for baptism on Easter Sunday.  Therefore, Henry and I decided to leave early enough so that we could go to Temso to talk with Joseph Kimayo (the man who came to the Bible study asking for prayer), and then get back to Koisagat in time for the service.  When I picked up Henry, he told me the plans had changed.  Each church was to have its own service, and the pastors would meet later in the afternoon.

 

Since the services at Temso didn’t begin until 10:30-11:00ish (African time) and we thought Joseph would be at church, we stopped by my shamba to view the progress.  We were there just a few minutes when a large procession of people passed by walking hurriedly on the road below.  Henry could see that they were carrying a child.  Three men came up the driveway, explained what had happened and asked if I could drive them to the hospital in Nandi Hills.  Henry and I got in my car, caught up with the parents carrying the child and took them to the hospital.  If they were to continue walking, it would have taken 30 minutes to get to a place where they could find a matatu (minivan taxi), and then the ride would have taken another 45 minutes to an hour to get to town.  We made it in 20 minutes.

 

After the service we drove back to Nandi Hills to check on the child.  The little seven-year-old girl, Jebotip, had died.  She and her mother had been collecting sand to put around their home.  Above them on the edge of a hill some people were moving large stones.  One of those stones rolled down the hill and hit Jebotip on the head.

 

I shared that story to show how God orchestrates our lives.  We make plans to do this and that unaware that God is using those plans to move us in a totally different direction.  He takes us where we are to lead us where He wants us to be.  Henry and I made plans, but those plans changed so we would be at my house in time to help that family.  I found out that they are unchurched and that’s the ultimate reason for our being there.  God has given them and us a chance to share the gospel and the love of God so those parents and, hopefully, other family members will be saved and be in heaven with their little girl.  I was able to share with them the Scripture in 2 Samuel 12:23 where the infant son of David and Bathsheba had just died and David says: “Can I bring him back again?  I will go to him, but he will not return to me.”  That’s a promise from God’s Word that young children go to heaven when they die.  What hope, comfort and peace that can bring to parents!  We live in a fallen, sinful world, but God provides us with love, hope, and grace in everything we face each day.

 

By the way, Joseph Kimayo did not come to church.  One of the church members who lives close to him will follow up and make sure he’s OK and encourage him to come next Sunday.  Please continue to pray for him and Kristofer Ruto.

 

God continues to teach us patience in dealing with the situation at Kapsabet.  We did not meet with the administrator on Thursday because the sister-in-law of Linus Kirimi died in childbirth along with the baby on Monday.  Her funeral was Thursday.  Many of the personnel at BCOK took part in her funeral because her husband, Peter Wanjohi, is the pastor of Nyeri Town Baptist Church.

 

We’ll try again next Thursday if God allows.  Again, we make plans, but God knows more than we do and has a greater and better plan that He will reveal in His perfect timing.  Thank you for your prayers for FBC, Kapsabet.  God has filled us with His peace while we wait.

 

The two pastors who graduated last November and received their Certificate in Theology have begun their diploma studies at Kenya Baptist Theological College in Limuru, a suburb of Nairobi.  Your prayers and donations are helping to fund their education.  With an income of less than $100 a month, they could never have afforded to pay their own way through school.  God sent me here to help these churches, and one of the best ways is to make sure the pastors are well trained.

 

Speaking of training and school, we’ve had to delay the start of our own Nandi Baptist Bible School because there are still too many details to be taken care of.  We were quite over ambitious to think we could get it together in such a short time.  The new start date will be November or December.  I must keep reminding myself that things move much more slowly here.

 

Shamba update:  All the walls are plastered and the ceilings are up and ready to be painted.  As of today all the floors should be ready for the ceramic tiles.  The bathroom walls will be tile also.  Next week the carpenters will begin building the kitchen cabinets, bedroom wardrobes (they don’t use closets), and the woodwork for the office where everything will be built in—desk, bookshelves, cabinets, etc.  They’re half way finished with the second water tank which will collect rain from the front of the house.  Rain collected from the sides and back of the house will go into the bigger tank already completed.  They’ve begun work on the servant’s quarters and the septic tank.  Some of the posts are in place for the chain-link fence which will eventually be covered in Bougainvillea and Kyapple for privacy.  Everything grows quite fast here because the growing season is all year.  I made a quick trip over there to take some measurements and forgot my camera again.  I’ll catch you up with pictures next week.

 

I’ll definitely take pictures of the baptism service tomorrow morning. 

 

I pray all of you have a very blessed Easter Sunday celebrating the resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  OUR GOD LIVES!!!

Bwana asa fiwe!

Mungu awa bariki!

Judy

 

Wednesday no one opened the church at Temso so us ladies just sat in the grass outside for Bible study.  With the holidays we were a little low in attendance but had a great study and fellowship time.

 

Top of Page