God continues to challenge our hearts, minds and spirits to help us grow and know him better.
Mal 3:10 says, “Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the LORD Almighty, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Let me prove it to you!” NLT How I long to be able to stretch my little faith to believe and act on this wonderful promise as we minister here in Kenya. In Malachi it talks about the physical blessings but my heart longs for the spiritual blessings also.
We were challenged medically as we started treating a terrible leg wound that covered 8” long and almost three inches wide. But just two weeks after being aware of it not healing, in over three months, God wonderfully healed it and now one month later there is almost no trace of the wound.
Little Peter, at Shalom, has had further tests on his eyes, and is going back for more tests and treatment to see if they can possible save his eyesight. He was doing better but had a serious setback and a CT scan revealed signs of possible meningitis on his brain. Please pray earnestly for him he is such a game little guy.
Esther’s ear problems are much improved but she still goes for bi-monthly checkups. She had problems for over 8 years before we sent her two the Lion’s hospital for treatment.
Brain, age 6, had black holes in his mouth where his teeth were supposed to be, he has been treated and bad teeth taken out but it will be an ongoing treatment pray it will not affect the permanent teeth. He is very skinny because the pain of eating kept him from food.
Steve the boy who was at one time bed fast has undergone treatments and tests for about a year. He was bent and walking only little when we came home in Jan but he was at the house two weeks ago and what a joy to see he has recovered and is running, playing and enjoying life as a 12 year old should.
We are challenged spiritually as we work with churches; it is always a blessing and the people express such encouragement when we travel to just visit; most of the time Will ends up preaching and one church even asked me to give a sermon?? I did speak a message God had just given me and ended up being blessed myself! The Victory church where we helped to establish an AWANA program has grown tremendously and those being saved are many. We will attend a baptismal of a number of the boys on the soccer team in Sept after they complete their disciple program. The AWANA students attended their first big AWANA rally of almost 100 churches and we were very proud of them as one of the boys came in 3rd and one of the girls came in 7th. It was a scary experience to stand before so many people and recite verses without mistakes but they did and we know next time more will be brave to do it. It has really sparked their desire to memorize even more verses. The Timothy/Paul program is doing great as the pastors taking the Windsor on-line college are reaching out and training in two distant places where churches were established. They will graduate 21 men at one location and are just starting the training at the other. Pastor Paul from Victory is going to the larger area to share the AWANA program and do training of Sunday school teachers. Pray they will catch the vision of how important it is to help their children be grounded in word of God.
We are challenged and humbled as God takes our small efforts to change lives. We had the joy of attending the graduation of a young Ethiopian man whom we have been helping. We first met him and joined in his desire to gain solid training in the Bible three years ago. He was led by God to come to Kenya to get training after he was saved out of a family who practiced witchcraft. When he arrived he knew maybe three dozen English words, no Kiswahili and had no money. He shared how he despaired his dream would not come true but that as we joined him and prayed with him in 2010 new hope sprang up in his heart. Many times he went without food and often slept on the church floor in Eastleigh because while we could supply tuition and some food he often went without. His desire now is to get even further training so when he returns to Ethiopia permanently he will be qualified to start a college to train pastors and workers. Please pray God will provide funds for further study. He has started over 20 little churches in Ethiopia and travels the long journey (36 hour bus ride one way) back to help them whenever the college is closed. This is a great investment and all who have helped will reap untold rewards along with him.
We are challenged physically as we travel long distances over “rough” roads (?) some are more like trails but one of the greatest joys is visiting in the homes and spending time in fellowship and prayer with those we are getting to know or are working with. There is never a pause or lack of words as we praise and rejoice together as true brothers and sisters in Jesus. It is very humbling to have them express such gratitude for such a simple and enjoyable thing. The long rule by the British has left its impact in their lives with the feeling they are inferior to us and so less valuable to God.
We are challenged financially as the many needs present themselves in never ending succession. We presently have 33 students in tailoring and we are planning to do an advanced course, called grade II, in Jan of 2014. We will take a limited number of our own students who graduate and desire to take the advance classes and see if this is something God has for us to continue. This class will introduce them to different machines and tools and sharpen their skills in making suits and wedding attire as well as dress design. If anyone would like to help a student the cost is about $200 for the seven month session, this includes tuition, exams and all materials needed. One of our first year students just stopped in to “appreciate us” for helping her get the things she needed. When she started she had no shoes, sweater or socks in this cold weather as well as no uniform to be like the rest. She is a beautiful girl who is grateful for the opportunity to learn a skill she can earn a living by. The local newspaper just published an article that told how an alarming number of girls as young as 13 often “give favors” to old men just for sanitary napkins or scented soaps. We are able monthly to provide all the supplies of this sort that the girls need thanks to your partnership with us.
We are challenged to be the prayer warriors God desires for the many young people we are privileged to know. The Victory soccer team continues to be a challenge and a blessing, almost nightly several text for verses of encouragement or ask for prayer. Will kids me that I have to “tuck” them all in at nite with messages of encouragement and assurance of our love and concern. Even as young in the Lord as they are we are impressed with their desire to serve God and their awareness that the world has a pull they want to resist. One was offered a position on an opposing team and even money if he would play for them but he told them, “I don’t play for money, I play for God”. We are seeing young men coming to the church just so they might get an opportunity to play on the team; even the radio announces their victories and many wonder where this team came from and why they are doing so well. When one of the league officials asked how such a small built team could win against much larger and more experienced teams the captain told him, “GOD; David was small, Goliath was big but God made the difference”. Please continue to pray for them to be a witness of God’s love and power. Many have very sad home lives and being part of the team is a great encouragement to them to live clean lives.
“Only one life will soon be past only what’s done for Christ will last”
Let us live each day for His Glory and praise the joys are boundless.