Lessons from Kenya -
 
I recently got back from a 17-day mission trip in Kenya, the second one on which I’ve been. I will be posting some amazing things God has shown me through this incredible experience. My heartaches…heartlifts…reality checks…and just God-in-my-face moments. I pray God will open your hearts and eyes to whatever He needs to in these next few weeks of posts.

Love

                In Kenya, you will find the worst possible conditions in which a person can be living (or as my American mindset would say, “If that’s even called living”).

Yet, nowhere else in my life have I felt so much love.

It’s crazy. It really is. This does not make sense.

These people have nothing. They are losing family members. Many of them are on their own, because everybody else they used to love and know has died. They work their butts off. They barely make any money, if even. Those that have homes go home to hot, muggy huts that often cost them more than they even make. Those that don’t have homes, like a young boy I met named Dulius, go back to their standard marketplace or street sleeping spot. Or like the people I met in the dump (a huge trash dump the size of a football field), who go “home” to their rut in the trash, or if they’re lucky, to their trash-cardboard-made, 3-walled enclosure. I am not exaggerating – I’m sure you’ve seen it on TV.

And the world looks on, saying, “See! Where is God? Where is God in all of this? If He is real – He would not let this happen!”

Yet these people I met in Kenya are the ones with the greatest joy and faith in God I have ever seen.

It makes me think twice about what really matters in life. It makes me think that the Bible is right when it says life is not about money, fame, me or anything else, but God. In fact, when I look at the two different mindsets I just listed above, it makes me think that we may have warped mindsets. Doesn’t it make you?

 

Psalm 138:6: Though the Lord is on high, he looks upon the lowly, but the proud he knows from afar.

Psalm 69:32: The poor will see and be glad— you who seek God, may your hearts live!

Jeremiah 29:13: You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

 

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16
               
                YOU – seek Him. Now. Don’t wait – too often it is too late. Seek Him. Seek Him. Go…


                                    Jesus Christ is truly the only way to Life.  We only have freedom in him. He took everything and changed it. How beautiful! Start, or re-start, a relationship with God today. Only through Jesus Christ – His perfect, sinless, stainless, Son can we have perfect life with him and God. Why? Because He became our imperfect, sinful, stained selves. He took your sins upon himself – and was pleased to do it because he wanted you to have a relationship with the Father. Sin separates us from God – and Christ is the opposite of sin. Believe Christ is who he says he is – “the way and the truth and the life” (John 14:6) and you will be saved – it’s his words - “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26).

He is Life. Without him we have nothing – really – and with him we have everything.
Samuel Absher
7/1/2009 10:01:39

Jared,
It sounds like God showed you alot about what really matters in Life. And although it may seem to be an elementary lesson (in every Sunday school class they tell the children not to value possessions but God) I think its important that we remember it, and practice this lifestyle, rather than dismiss it as one of those childish lessons learned.
I believe that Christians who have grown up in the church have a tendency to ignore beliefs like these that are the building blocks of the Christian faith, and instead they look to more "advanced" beliefs, "that an experienced mind should wrestle with"... the concept of eternity, the concept of the trinity, the implications of virgin birth, and inherited sin. But all of these issues, although important, are not as fundamental to the Christian life as (pardon the cliche statement) what we learn in Sunday School...
And, on another note, I'm glad you brought up the point about the naysayers of Christianity. The ones that point and say, "Where is God in all of this?" I know its easy for a kid whose typing this message on an expensive DELL computer in a fairly nice home, but I think, in a way, poverty is a blessing. It makes it a lot easier not be materialistic and keep our attention directly on God. I believe I'm stealing this line from a Boethius, a Christian philosopher from the Middle Ages (its ok you can laugh, that name does sound ridiculous). He says that, "All fortune is good fortune; it either takes away your possessions and destroys your illusion of happiness and makes you focus on God or it gives you earthly goods and blesses you in a more materialistic way."
Sorry this message turned into an essay!
Thanks,
Sam

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7/1/2009 15:59:13

Great thoughts Sam!

You brought up a very interesting point in a way I've never thought about it before...how important the Sunday school stories really are. Great stuff!

And about Boethius, it's not too strange. That's my redneck cousin's name...(he lives in Ada);) Haha jk

Anybody else?

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