Category Archives: Adventures In Missions

16 Funny Things I Learned in Kenya

Well I thought it was time to break away from some of the serious stuff I learned in Kenya and share some of the lighter side of our trip.  I present to you 16 funny and sometimes disturbing things I learned in Kenya.

  1. If you breed a rooster and a duck you get the ugliest animal on earth.  I’ve lovingly named it the “Duooster”.
  2. Walking to lunch and dinner each day dodging live chickens only to eat a meal made out of chicken seems eerily close to living on death row for poultry.
  3. The worst way to attract a wife as a single man is to follow up any question about marriage presented to you with the phrase, “but I’ve lived with this guy for 8 years”.   This is guaranteed relationship kryptonite.
  4. Roosters have a crazy ability to tell time.  Without fail they do their crowing at 3:30 AM each day.  I hate roosters.  On a brighter note, I think that one of them has a smoking problem or at least it sounds that way when it winds up to crow each morning so maybe it will die before next year.
  5. Pushing a Safarii Van out of the mud in the middle of the African plains only to come across a lioness 1/8th of a mile from the spot you just got stuck at will make a grown man cry inside.
  6. A man who can cut the grass of a schoolyard with a machete is more of a man than I’ll ever be and also a better guitar player.
  7. Normal people do not eat bugs that could be used as stunt doubles for pterodactyls by grabbing them by the wings and putting them directly into their mouths.  Only superhuman men like Moses can do this.
  8. Americans should never drive in Kenya.  Some Americans shouldn’t be allowed to drive in America, but no American should drive in Kenya.
  9. During a worship service in Kenya a keyboard with any number of dated sound effects on it is appropriate to be played.  It does not matter if it’s in the right key or even appropriate at the time. You can’t hold back the keyboard.
  10. Michael W. Smith is the #1 artist in Africa for 20 years running.  His music can be used for background music for any and all purposes including alter calls, weddings, and chastising high students when they talk during a teaching session.
  11. Despite what we as ignorant Americans think, Kenyans can already play basketball.  Additionally they will play in their bare feet or sandals and even if they cut their foot and blood pours out of the wound they will not stop playing.
  12. Chickens can hop onto beds and prefer laying next to Takamine guitars.
  13. Taking a bucket shower is hard.  Taking a bucket shower and then forgetting your towel and having to make the wet walk of shame is harder.
  14. Kenyans celebrate birthdays by hiding around corners and dumping buckets of water on the heads of the birthday person.  I have an ice cream cake.
  15. If you attempt to give a group of Kenyan students candy while standing on the edge of a stage you are putting your life in danger.  Think about the scene in A Bugs Life when the ants become aware they out number the grasshoppers if that helps.
  16. In Amsterdam airports woman can clean the men’s bathrooms with men in it.  I’m just saying it can happen to you.

Sorry, but every now and then I need to loosen up the spiritual factor and just have some fun.  Hope you enjoyed!

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8 Spiritual Truths I Learned in Africa

Upon returning from Africa for the second year in a row I’ve been overwhelmed with what God is doing in the hearts of the people of Kenya and in the hearts of the American teams we send over.  I wanted to share just 8 Spiritual Truths that I learned over the course of my time in Kenya.

1.  The Word of God Transcends All Boundaries Impacting Those That Hear It.  Race, ethnicity, border, government, or socioeconomic status does not limit God’s Word.  It impacts the souls of those anyone who encounter it.

2.  Powerful, Gospel-driven, African Pastors Are Preaching God’s Word.  There may be a shortage of the number of Christian pastors in the country of Kenya, but the men that we support are doing a tremendous job.  The power and unwavering love of the Gospel is palpable in every message preached.

3.  Kenyan Christians Pray Much Stronger Than We Do.  Prayer to the people of Kenyan is not just a spiritual discipline it is a necessity of life.  They eagerly expect the God of the Universe to supply their needs and pray with the confidence that it will happen in a far greater way than we as Americans every do.

4.  Being A Christian & Following Christ Is A Problem In Africa Too.  Even though I’ve seen powerful men and women of God in our time in Kenya, I have also seen many people claiming to be Christian’s but no fruit to prove it.  Similar to the US, the application and implication of being a fully devoted Christ follower sometimes can be too daunting in the face of the pressures they face.

5.  Health and Wealth Preachers Spit Venom In Kenya Too.  The evil of health and wealth doctrine has permeated the African culture.  Preying on the poorest of the poor, these men and women will preach that with a “little faith” they can leave the slums of the valley and rise to the palaces of the rich.  This evil is so detrimental to the vulnerable people of Africa that I urge us to pray against this type of teaching to protect the good work being done.

6.  Women In Kenya Are Being Empowered.  Over the past two years, I have seen such a tremendous rise in the empowerment of the young woman we come in contact with.  Certainly the teachings of our One Light Self-Defense team have played a role, but more importantly I see God working great things in these girls.

7.  We Need To Empower Africa Not Make Another America.  One of my many failures in thinking going to Africa was that I thought the answer to solving the problems of Africa was to make them American.  Boy was I wrong.  The reality is that we need these Christian men and women to impact Africa to make the best Africa not make another United States.   Or even worse “save” these people we come across by bringing them to the US.  We need Jesus centered people in Africa making a difference for the Kingdom.  If they all come to the US what good is that to Africa?

8.  More Work Needs To Be Done.  God is doing great things in the lives of the people of Africa.  More than ever I feel the presence of God permeating the slums of Kenya but also the lives of the people in them.  However, more work is left to do.

There is such a need for the Living Water that only Christ can provide that we can’t stop our efforts in getting it to the people that want it.

So if you are sitting on your hands at home saying “I wish I could go on a missions trip” or “I am nervous to go out of the country” or “Missions is only for a select group of people” I’d encourage you to reconsider. Before you make up your mind, hit your knees and see what God would say to you.

I believe, that money will be raised, fears will be lifted, and false thinking will be cleared up when you set out resolutely to follow the calling of God.  Consider leaving the comforts of the US for the mission of the work of God.  You’ll never wish you didn’t and He needs more people to spread His truth.

 

 

Well that is just off the top of my head.  I’m hoping to share more of what I learned in Africa throughout the next blogs, but I thank you all for your prayers.

 

God Bless!!!!!

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Back To Africa

I can’t believe it’s been one year since I’ve went to Africa.  It seems like yesterday Cherie and I landed at the Nairobi Airport got off the plane and stood in line at the customs “desk” to enter the country.  I remember it hitting me very quickly that it’s possible to sweat just standing in a line.  This was only a hint at the amount of perspiration that was to come though…believe me.

Well this I’m so excited and blessed that I get to return to Africa and the wonderful men, women, and children of Joska this year!  In fact the Thanksgiving meal I’m about to destroy in a few hours will barely be digested by the time I load the plane it’s that soon.  It will be tougher to leave home since BG and Cherie will be staying behind, but I know that God will protect and keep them healthy while I’m gone.

It seems fitting that as the last bit of Western American thanks is wiped off my mouth I will soon touch down in a country that seems to have little to be thankful for.  For some it’s hard to imagine these oppressed people finding gratitude in the rubble and chaos of the world around them.  However, you only need to talk to them for a nanosecond to realize they are thankful for things we don’t even put on our back-up thankful list.

Their short list consists of:

  • Food of any kind
  • Shelter of any form
  • Clean water
  • Life for another day
  • A day without rape
  • A child born without AIDS

However, they praise God for these things with such sincerity in their souls that it makes you realize there are genuinely thankful for every little bit they have.    I love the distilled joy these people demonstrate.   A joy rid of any of the sediments of our materialistic world and filtered down to the essence of love and contentment.  They are able to get to the heart of thanksgiving and the heart of God faster than we ever will.

So yes I am leaving on a plane and leaving my family behind for 10 days, but when I return I will be filled with more clarity and love for life and God then I could ever have imagined.

Don’t get me wrong.  I am very grateful for all that God has blessed me with in my life.

I am grateful for the church that supports me on these missions’ trips.  I’m grateful for the family that loves me enough to let me leave even if it hurts.  I’m thankful for the friends and family that will be praying for me as I travel.  I’m thankful for the people I will meet and the love I will be shown when I arrive.

However I am most thankful for the love of Christ that propels me to go on these trips will also be the Love that is reflected back to me in the lives of these children.

To close, I think it’s only fitting to be reminded of the greatest moments of thanks in all of the World.

 19 And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”   20 In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.  - Luke 22:19-20

 

May we be constantly brought back to the sacrifice of Jesus and the underserved Grace we receive through Him. Thank you Jesus for all you have done for us.  May this be the Grace that is taught and shown to these children that we are able to minister to.

Well, Happy Thanksgiving everyone and be praying for me.   I can’t wait to tell you all about it!

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