On Sunday, we visited the fellowship here in Machakos for the first time in a year. The Lord used our time to reveal something important. Bo spoke on the story of Gideon and reminded the people that while Gideon was from the weakest clan and was the least in his own family, God called him a mighty man of valor and used him powerfully. I followed Bo and I started by asking the people a simple question: are you a sinner or are you righteous (a saint). The answer was pretty revealing to me. One of the leaders could not answer and the other one wasn’t confident either but decided to say he was a sinner. I spoke only briefly and shared from 2 Cor 5:17 and Ephesians 1:1, encouraging the people to begin to believe they are who God says they are as new creations in Christ.
Through this experience, I felt like I began to see deeper into the spiritual connections to the physical poverty. If a person believes he is a worthless sinner, always trying to work off his transgressions and avoid further mistakes, he will not have the confidence and endurance to take chances to be successful in work and business. Creativity is also shut down by shame and guilt. A spiritual mindset of “just trying to barely make it to heaven” seems to lend itself to “just trying to get by” in life. I feel the Lord is calling us to match our efforts in natural empowerment with a message of identity and empowerment in Christ.
On the practical side, it seems like the Lord may have made a connection for us to give us the legal help we need to prepare the land for a well, a children’s home, and everything else the Lord would want to do. There are several organizations that I think would want to help and partner with us, so this step will be important. Please pray for wisdom and direction in this process
Elizabeth and Joanne had a great time playing with the kids on Sunday and yesterday and Elizabeth took some great photos of the children. They are so happy and healthy; it makes all of the other trouble worth it.
Tomorrow we will be meeting with Onesmus to discuss plans, finances, etc for the future. We may also go and visit a fellowship in the afternoon. Thanks for your prayers!
We arrived safely last night in Machakos. This morning we met with the grandmothers to discuss a variety of ways to empower them to become more self-sufficient. It was a really great time together. We discussed the lack of food and the different causes and also asked for their input on solutions. The goal was to only facilitate discussion and idea sharing and to avoid offering solutions from American perspectives.
Thanks for your prayers!