Our mission team has been home for about two weeks now, and I am finally starting to get through all of my emails and messages. Before we left, I sat down with one of TPCC’s own young women, Julie Smith. Julie was accepted to serve in a three month internship with Christian Missionary Fellowship and the Missions of Hope. One of my emails was from Julie who was answering some interview questions I had posed to her. Below is a short interview I conducted with her about this great opportunity to serve beyond the walls of TPCC at 6590 Whitestown Road.
Category Archives: Kenya – September 2010
I write this post on the plane back to Indianapolis from Detroit. We have already been flying the last 20 hours, so you would think the short jog from Detroit wouldn’t be a bother. Even so, our group is eager to get home to our families and friends, including our church family at TPCC.
Traveling back to the USA has been quite an experience. Flying for hours seated beside people who don’t speak your language; struggling to digest the various images (both of startling poverty and wondrous creation) from this trip; yearning for the familiarity of our home country; and the greetings from our fellow countrymen as we passed through customs in Detroit.
This trip reminded me of the Foreigners sermon series recently preached at TPCC. (If you haven’t heard it yet, jump over to the podcast – it’s great!). As an American, it is easy for me to claim the daily luxuries that we enjoy (electricity, toilets, clean water, public safety – I could go on and on…) are “daily needs” not wants. Continue reading
It is hard to believe that it is Sunday night. It seems like just yesterday we landed in Nairobi. But I guess time flies when you are having fun. It has been a great week and the mission team has worked like a single body moving together all week. Even when I asked for guest bloggers, I was overwhelmed by volunteers on the team who were willing to carry that burden.
(Before I forget, last night’s post thanked everyone on the mission team, except Dave. I must take this opportunity to thank Dave for his effective leadership on this trip. Dave is a great guy, a fantastic servant leader, and very fun to be around. He was a great teacher and used each moment to present valuable learning opportunities to us. TPCC is privileged to have him as our missions/outreach pastor.)
Well, sadly today was the last full day of ministry for our Kenya mission team! Tomorrow we will all go our separate ways (4 back to the U.S. and 6 on safari) and I have to admit, I am really going to miss this group! What started out 8 weeks ago as a diverse group of individuals who really didn’t know one other, has turned into one of the most effective and enjoyable mission teams I have ever led. We’ve worked hard together, we’ve laughed hard together, and we’ve seen God do some really amazing things through our lives. More on that later…but first It seems that our team has gotten really good at finding some comical moment during the day that we like to share with you.
Today was an awesome day in Bondeni, even though we had to say goodbye to our new friends. After presenting the uniforms yesterday, we were also privileged to present the entire soccer team with brand new soccer cleats, balls and practice uniforms. Brittany shared with the team an awesome story on how the money for the soccer cleats was provided.
Last year I wrote the blog for TPCC after a very happy day of VBS and playing with the children at Bondeni School. Today was another very happy day for Traders Point as we were privileged to travel from class to class, taking turns as each one of us Seth, Kristi, Jackie, Katie, Frances, Jon, Dave, and Brittany, presenting brand new school uniforms to 472 children. Dave Jamerson encouraged each class urging them “to continue to always study hard, listen to their excellent teachers, strive to believe God for the great things He is going to do in their lives and wear their new uniforms with pride.”
This trip is full of excitement, even in our sleep! Two nights ago I woke up my roommate, Frances, yelling about a big black caterpillar under my pillow. Then I learned it was a dream. Whoops! Sorry Frances. I’m not alone with my crazy dreams, though. Dave was awake in bed while Jon was fast asleep. The next thing he sees is Jon getting out of bed, crawling to the door with a look of panic on his face. Then he mumbled “the monkeys…did we get them all? Are all the monkeys put away?” Dave reassured him that the monkeys were ok, and so Jon went back to sleep. We tease Jon by calling him Monkey boy. Apparently the warning on the malaria medicine of “vivid dreams” is accurate!
So we are able to end the night and get a taste of home with playing our famous Indiana game called euchre (with my new African playing cards) and I’m learning that we all like to talk smack when it comes to competition (in all love and kindness of course). We had a really good debriefing session tonight after our dinner at the grace house. We have definitely been blessed to have great team unity on this trip. Every new day that we have had in the slums seems to be a new eye opening experience for all of us. Many amazing stories/experiences from today.
Today was the first time we went into the slums of Bondeni, and into the Mathare Valley and surrounding slums. This evening as our team was debriefing from the activities of the day, the word that came to everyone’s minds was “overwhelming.” Continue reading
Today we started the day by traveling from our accommodations at the Grace House to the Bondeni school to pick up a few supplies. It was certainly eye-opening to see Nairobi Kenya (and particularly Bondeni) in the daylight. After picking up chalk supplies at the Bondeni school, we went to the Bondeni church to join them for their worship.