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December 2007 News Archive


Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, December 29, 2007


Christmas and Elections


A couple of days before Christmas Eve the Lord and I were working on my loneliness since my children and grandchildren are on the other side of the globe, when a young girl (7th grader) came to my door.  She had visited briefly another time with a friend, but this time she was alone.  We talked for a few minutes before she asked to go with me to the U.S. and be adopted.  She said her parents, especially her mother, abused her.  We talked on, and then I shared the gospel with her.  She prayed to give her life to the Lord and I explained how she needed to forgive her parents just as Jesus had forgiven her.  She left a much happier person with a new English Bible, and my loneliness was gone.  God has an answer and a cure for everything!


On Christmas Eve we had an evening service at Cheptabach.  Henry volunteered my smallest generator, which doesn’t have enough power to run the fridge, but can run a couple of lights.  Well, it worked for about an hour and then stopped.  I turned on one of my rechargeable lamps which burned out before the service began.  We had arrived at 7:00 to set up and be ready for an 8:00 service which didn’t start until 9:00 when the pastor finally arrived.  Typical African timing!  The second lamp was now on, so they decided the service would end at 11:00 instead of midnight so we would still have some light.  I readily agreed since at my age I turn into a pumpkin at 10:00!  Even with all the unexpected events, the service was beautiful with a children’s choir, a youth choir which sang “When the Saints Go Marching In,” and Bible teaching in a rough tin-sided-and-roofed building with dirt floors filled with God’s people.


Christmas morning we were at Temso for another wonderful worship service.  The Sunday School children sang several songs and recited Bible verses.  What a great job they did!  More singing and Bible teaching followed, and then we were on our way to family celebrations.  I and my dog Bush went to Anna’s for some delicious food and fellowship.  Bush visited with his grandmother, mother, father, siblings, cousins and friends.  (Anna has about 12 dogs!)  And we spent the night so I could have a “real” hot shower, the best Christmas gift ever!  The next morning Bush and Panya, one of his sisters, visited the fish in Anna’s pond and both looked like wet mops!  December 26, Boxing Day, is still celebrated in Kenya as it was during the English colonial days.


Then came the big day—Election Day, Dec. 27.  Police and military were everywhere in the country, especially at all the polling stations where trouble was expected.  It was relatively quiet with only four deaths, but many were injured.  Since then, the tension has been building as the results have yet to be announced.  In fact, I had to go to Nandi Hills this morning with Shikuku because my car battery died.  None of us expected any problems in that quiet town of the Kalenjin.  However, all the signs were there—piles of grass burning on the paved road, tree limbs and rocks in the road—but the fires were out so we continued.  We found out there had been a riot earlier, not with the Kalenjin, but with other tribes.  Police and military stopped it and all was quiet when we arrived.  But then a group of men destroyed some items outside one of the “supermarkets” and started everything all over again.  The police and military in flack jackets, helmets and automatic guns rushed to the scene and people started running in every direction.  I was safely at the bank a block away where there are always guards and Henry was with me.  Shikuku came back and escorted me out of town through broken soda bottles and a barricade at the main entrance to town (more piles of grass on fire and a line of men trying to stop us).  There will be more trouble tonight (Sat., Dec. 29) and tomorrow after the winner is announced.  Please keep praying for this struggling young country.  Thank the Lord elections are only every five years!


I pray that all of you have a blessed New Year in the love of our Lord God!


Mungu awabariki!



Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, December 22, 2007


Brief News


I know all of you are very busy so this will be a short update.  I’ll be spending most of the holidays at Chemartin.  I might even spend a night there and get a “real” hot shower!  My “pitcher” showers are hot by heating water on the stove, so I’m clean and smell OK.  Don’t be concerned.


Some of you have asked for pictures of the inside of my house.  Attached are pictures of the sitting room with the sunset colors coming through the windows and a little Christmas tree, dining area, study with the sewing machine next to the computer, bedroom with a magnolia bedspread from Stone Mountain (a touch of Georgia), and kitchen.  There are also two guest bedrooms and two bathrooms (indoor).  As you can see it’s nice and roomy and very comfortable. 


It’s been a very quiet week with just a few opportunities for ministry.  Today was the last day of work for the tea estates and most people are traveling back to their homes around Kenya for family Christmas celebrations and to vote.  The whole week is one big holiday:  Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day (a hold-over from the English colonial days), Election Day, and Day-after-Election-Day when everyone will be traveling back to go to work next Saturday.  Please pray for peace all over the country.


A very blessed and Merry Christmas to you all!

Mungu awabariki!




Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, December 15, 2007


Furaha ya Krismasi!


That’s Merry Christmas in Kiswahili, although you never hear it.  Everyone says it in English.  In fact I remember last year asking several people how to say it in Swahili and very few knew how, so I looked in my dictionary. 


Last year Christmas was very low key with no lights, few or no decorations in the stores and very few Christmas trees since there’s not much room in a mud hut for a tree.  My funniest memory from last year is the white mechanical Santa Claus singing “The Yellow Rose of Texas” outside Nakumatt in Eldoret. 


This year Christmas is being outshined by the elections on December 27.  Tomorrow one of the presidential candidates is coming to Nandi Hills.  The announcement was made through a loudspeaker attached to a car that kicked up a lot of dust as it drove by.  This means church attendance will probably be quite slim in the morning.


None of the above diminishes the celebration of the birth of our Lord and Savior in my heart.  I pray that all of you who are reading this know Jesus personally and will experience His love, joy and peace, not only at this time of year, but always.  God bless you and your family with a beautiful Christmas in His love!


Because of Christmas and elections we ended Bible studies for the year last week, so I’ve had some extra time to catch up on some things like hemming my curtains which have been way too long since July!  But ministry never ends no matter what’s going on, for example, a lady needed counseling after losing her job; a pastor needed prayer as he faces a divorce due to unfaithfulness on the part of his wife; a lady needed love, comfort and prayer after receiving news that her husband was killed in a car accident and their son was driving; and a lady who has four children by four different fathers prayed to receive Christ as her Lord and Savior.  That is what Christmas is all about.  That is why Jesus was born and died and was resurrected.  He brought us hope, love, forgiveness, peace and eternal life in Heaven free of all our worldly problems. 


For to us a Child is born,

to us a Son is given,

and the government will be on His shoulders.

And He will be called

          Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,

          Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Of the increase of His government and peace

there will be no end….

The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.  (Isaiah 9:6-7)


And He did over two thousand years ago because He loves us!


A Very Merry Blessed Christmas to you all!



Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, December 8, 2007


Troubles, Trials and Testing


John 16:33 says, “In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.”  This verse is on my husband’s grave marker.  He suffered through 10 months of cancer, and then overcame the world at the age of 51 to live a heavenly life forever, free of all trouble.  If you are reading this, you are still in the world facing trouble.


On my return trip to Kenya in September, after a wonderful month-long visit with family and friends, the Lord told me, “The first year in Kenya was easy, but the next year will be much harder.”  How’s that for an encouraging statement?!  As usual, He was right.  Ever since I returned the trouble, trials and testing have not ceased.  The generators, all four of them, have continued to give trouble.  Because of the generator situation, the hot showers I didn’t want to give up have been few and far between.  We were to go to Molo to see the beehive makers this past Monday, but my car exhaust system fell apart.  Henry tied up the parts with wire so I could drive it to Chemartin for Shikuku to weld it back together—the 16th welding job on the underside of my car in 14 months.  I’m laughing as I write this.  There’s more but I won’t bore you.


1 Peter 4:12 says, “Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you.  But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when His glory is revealed.”  Now that’s encouragement!  All the above happenings are to be expected if we are doing the will of God because Satan wants to discourage us, take away our joy, destroy our witness, and stop the work of God.  Well, he isn’t because he’s already been defeated by the cross of Jesus Christ and faces eternal damnation in Hell.  The promises of God are enough to keep us going in His grace and strength.


I told you about purchasing land in Lengut for the church a couple of months ago.  God has provided even more land for other churches.  Esther and John Muigei have sold us land to expand Cheptabach church property.  The members want to build a Christian school on their property and God is providing.  On Monday we will be going to Setek to meet with a landowner who has offered a parcel to the new church there at a good price.  Very soon we’ll be finalizing a deal with a landowner in Kipture for the church that is meeting in the bisected building.  The money for all this property is being furnished by the generous members and friends of First Baptist Church, Snellville, GA, through the Missions Office.  Thank you and God bless you all!


Two more churches are being born on tea estates at Septon and Sitoi.  That’s an answer to prayer.  One of our goals has been to have a Baptist church on every tea estate.  Because the estates are private property, we can’t go in and evangelize like we do other places.  We find someone living and working there who wants a church and is willing to work to build one, and then God grows it.  That’s exciting!


Please continue to remember Anna and Thomas Ngeno in prayer.  Anna was diagnosed with osteoporosis in her neck, is taking medication and wears a brace most of the time.  Because of that she can’t travel on the pothole-filled roads and hasn’t been to Kisumu in quite a while to get her hair cut.  So the other day while I was there waiting for Shikuku to weld my car back together, I cut her hair.  Pat Hamilton, my friend who used to cut my hair in the US, gave me a professional pair of scissors to take with me to Kenya in case I got desperate.  Well, Pat, I used them on Anna and she was brave enough to let me do it.  Her hair looks a whole lot better than before.  That was an act of God’s mercy on us both!


This was the last week of Bible studies until after Christmas and the elections.  Please pray for the Kenyans.  As the time gets closer (Dec. 27) the demonstrations and violence get worse.  In fact my broken exhaust system was an act of God’s protection to keep us away from Molo where violence erupted and all the roads were blocked the day before.  So I’m staying pretty close to home until January.  We’ve had no problems in the area where I live and work and don’t expect any.  The trouble is only in certain regions inhabited by certain notorious tribes and always in Nairobi.


As always, thank you for your prayers!


Mungu awabariki!



Posted_By: Judy
Date: Saturday, December 1, 2007




Many adventures have been a part of my life here:  The car getting stuck in mud a few times; falling down while walking in mud; sliding on rocks walking downhill; trying to get up my driveway during the rainy season; dodging cows, sheep, goats, bicyclists, and pedestrians all at the same time while driving on all the roads; dodging potholes without hitting oncoming cars which are also dodging potholes; closing the car windows fast enough when passing or being passed by another vehicle on very dusty roads during the dry season, which is now; and on it goes.


The most recent adventure was yesterday, Friday, while waiting for a three o’clock beekeeping meeting to start at 4:00 at Temso.  A few people had told me about a water source that I might be able to pipe to the house, so Henry and I started out to find it.  He thought he knew where it was.  “Just up there,” he said, pointing to a very high hill.  Off we went.  At every mud hut he asked directions.  We ended up at a source he didn’t know about, and then found two other sources of water coming up out of the ground looking very clean and refreshing.  Two or three families shared the water at each location, but none of them provided sufficient water to pipe to my house.  In addition, the terrain made it impossible to lay down pipes.


The walk was fun and exciting as it was very steep going up and down, especially finding the last water source.  Water was coming out of a large hole in the side of a hill under the roots of a huge tree.  From there it went almost straight down to what must have been a creek or stream.  The dense growth prevented our seeing the bottom.  I heard bees and then saw them getting water and flying around the wild flowers.  We followed their path with our eyes to a humongous hive hanging in a nearby tree.  Tarzan may have been able to swing to it, but we certainly couldn’t reach it.  There was probably a gallon of honey in that hive.  God answered one of the many questions the people have asked about raising bees for honey:  Where do we get the bees?  He has already provided!


Last Sunday was our first visit to the new church in Nandi Hills Township.  (Nandi Hills is the name of a town and the very large general area where all the tea estates are located.)  There were about 22 people present, and they seem to have a strong foundation.  They had even borrowed a small keyboard for the occasion.  Henry and I stayed only about 30 minutes and shared words of encouragement and a promise to return to them soon.  Then it was off to Chemartin to worship and meet with them about a new pastor to replace the one who went politicking. 


Our two pastors who have been able to attend Bible school left this week for another three-week session at Kenya Baptist Theological College in Limuru, a suburb of Nairobi.  Pastors Peter Kemboi and John Rotich need your prayers for God’s wisdom as they gain knowledge and training and for provision for their families while they’re away.  Also please pray as we try to start the Nandi Hills Bible School in January, which is a God-sized project that I know very little about, but God knows all there is to know.  As King Jehoshaphat said in his prayer as a huge army was approaching the Israelites, “We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon You.”

(2 Chronicles 20:12)  We serve an awesome God!


As always, thank you for your prayers!


Mungu awabariki!



Here are pictures of the new church in Nandi Hills Township and their pastor, Joshua Ebei.  Please pray for them.


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