Kenya. There is nothing like it. Val keeps talking about the contradictions here, and that is so true. Yesterday, our first day (we arrived late the night before) in Kenya we went from walking through garbage and open sewage to get to the most beautiful, precious children who hungrily ate their cup of porridge in the midst of a desperate slum…and then later we dropped off a friend in her home which is located near the U.N. housing. Manicured lawns, guards, spacious mansions. Yes, it is a contradiction in all ways.
One of my funniest moments from yesterday was sitting in a traffic jam for over an hour. As Deb said, it was better than any t.v. show she’d ever seen. The highway went from being a two way to being a one way in a matter of moments and we were stuck moving slowly and jerkily through traffic. Suddenly what appeared next to us (in the middle of the highway) seemed surreal—goat herders and their hundred head of goats, running next to the cars and buses and taxis…and then we noticed a man pushing a fellow in a wheel chair, as if he they were a car in the lane ahead of us. Finally the police officers showed up, yelling and pointing and telling people where to go to get the highway back into a two-lane situation. The first officer had a machine gun, but the second one carried a whip! A whip that threatened to get the vehicles and people whipped back into shape. And finally, we were off and running and laughing about what we had been through.
One of my favorite parts of the day yesterday was passing out kits from the organization Days for Girls, a group based in Lynden, WA who came up with the idea of sustainable maxi-pads. The women who received the kits were so grateful and thankful, and said this would change their lives. It’s true. I loved being part of empowering them.
However, I have to say that my very favorite part was being in the presence of John and Mary in the feeding program in the Kibera slum. They are the true hands and feet of God. They live in the slum, serve freely (and by that I also mean they serve for free and are not paid by WorldCOMP), give their heart and soul to the children, and started all of this on their own because they saw the need. When I was with them I felt incredibly honored to just be sitting with them, experiencing their love for the children and humble hearts before God. I am not doing them or my experience justice. All I can say is, sitting quietly with them was powerful and enlightening. I was blessed.
How can I describe this trip so far? Overwhelming. Satisfying. At times for me, terrifying. Full of joy and hope in the midst of darkness. The evidence of Christ’s light shining for all the world to see.
I am so very grateful to God for this experience. I am so thankful that my husband is at home with the kids, and my friends are supporting him. I would not be able to do this without a village surrounding me.
Love you all back home