Saturday, April 28, 2007
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
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
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
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.
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
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.
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.
Saturday, April 21, 2007
From the Mountain Top to the
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
Miscellaneous events of the
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.
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.
Saturday, April 14, 2007
Easter Sunday 2007
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
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
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!
Saturday, April 7, 2007
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
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
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.
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!
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.