Not far … Just around the next corner …

I have taken many road trips in Kenya.  Often as I travel, especially long distances, I enjoy the company of passengers who keep me company and help me to find the way to my destination.  It is a great time to chat and build my knowledge of Kenyan culture, politics and geography. Generally, it is an enjoyable experience watching the scenery as it whizzes past and from time to time observing wild animals grazing along the road.

However, time begins to drag when the safari (kiswahili for trip) continues for an overly lengthy and unanticipated period of time without seeming to get any nearer to the stopping point.  And, we have all heard the phrase “how much farther”, and the inevitable reply will always be “we are getting close … it is just around the next corner.”

“Just around the next corner”

Expectantly, we round the bend in the road with hope, looking for the town or village to which we are headed.  We may keep driving another 45 minutes and again ply the question “are we there yet”?

“Just around the next corner … almost there.”

I can’t help but compare these “long” trips to the building process.  We seem so close to being finished but completion also seems to be such a long way off.  There are just too many corners to count but we are making headway and we praise God for the move forward.   Slowly by slowly, we will get the last corner and arrive at the destination — at least in this phase.  Work begins on Monday to tile the floors and we trust that funds will be sufficient to complete the buildings in time for the dedication in December.  Thank you for your ongoing support and prayers.  God always provides so that we can continue the journey.

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No More Tears

A tragic event threatened to destroy whatever unity might be in Kenya but the tragedy brought people of all races, religion and background together like never before.  Please pray for Kenya.

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Waffles Anyone?

inspiration for construction waffles

As the truck was being loaded with materials that would be needed for the upper floor slab on the brick building, the driver commented on the supplies that would be transported.  According to him, there was a new construction technique that would save costs and give a finished product on the inside of the building.  The driver gave us the contact for the contractor who had set up operation in Eldoret.

After visiting the site, the contractor with Rev. Martin and Bishop Nixon gave the cost estimates for all the materials required, arranged for delivery of the waffles and set the time when he would be at the site to supervise and train the workers for the installation of the waffles and completion of the slab.

brick building with main building behind

brick building with main building behind

It was exciting as the waffles were delivered to the building site.

The work is complete on the brick building except the finishing work (floor and walls), window grills and doors and glass.  When the doors and windows are placed, the building will be to the point where it can be used, giving more space for students and teachers.

not the edible kind

not the edible kind

IMGP4572

supporting structure for upper floor slab

Just add paint and "voila"

Just add paint and “voila”

Construction almost complere

Construction almost complere

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A Few Detours Along the Way

     Have you ever felt like you were going about 6 different directions at the same time?  If you never have, ask me, and I might try to tell you though it is a little difficult to articulate.  Maybe that is why I haven’t posted anything for some time now as I try to figure out just what and where is next.  It surely isn’t for lack of something to say.  I usually don’t have that problem.

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Where it all began

I need to begin, I think,  with the construction of the gate since that was the project that was started in 2011 when my family came to visit Kenya and to complete the Shekina room.  The gate was to have been done by a member of the extended family but he became ill just 2 weeks before the trip.  Funds had been raised but the gate process was delayed since every time the  welder came to the building site, he was given “urgent” work in order to complete the main building that was needed if we were to begin the Bible School sessions as planned in 2012.  Doors and window grills were the first priority as the wall where the gate would be positioned was not complete (and still isn’t).

The main gate was made in July this year and stands ready to be placed at the entrance when the wall is up.  (a picture of the gate is at the top of this page).  A smaller pedestrian gate in the wall at a later time will complete the work.

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Beginning the 2nd building

The Bible School sessions were moved to the new school site near Eldoret in April 2012 but it quickly became apparent that the space for students was not adequate so a decision was made, when funds became available, to begin a second, brick building adjacent to the almost finished first building.

The next blog will give you more details of the exciting progress on this building which is almost complete to the point where it can be used except for windows, doors. flooring and finished walls.

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COOKING 101

It was a beautiful day, filled with promise and expectancy.  The normally cool wind had given way to the warmth of the sun as the women entered in the church building.   The day’s session began with exuberant singing and a word from Scripture to encourage the women who had gathered for fellowship and the opportunity to learn.

The table at the front was covered with a variety of food stuffs — vegetables, spices and juice which had been set in place to facilitate the cooking lesson that was to be part of the day’s events.  Neddy Dingili began with all washing their hands in preparation for their participation.

Neddy introduced the women to new cooking ingredients, especially those that enhance the flavour of food and provide health benefits.  The women then were treated to a lunch of the food that was prepared in the demonstration, including a cake that was baked with the common household utensils and equipment that would be found in most Kenyan homes.  All the ingredients that were used are readily available in the local markets even though many of the women were unfamiliar with them.  I particularly liked the juice that was made from boiling the outside of a pineapple to which citric acid and sugar were added.

I think this would be a good time to go visiting in their homes!

learning about cooking techniques and nutrition

learning about cooking techniques and nutrition

making stir fried rice

making stir fried rice

everyone gets in on the action

everyone gets in on the action

lunch is served

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<a href="” title=”No Ordinary Election”>No Ordinary Election

A production of IRIN explores the issues of the next general election in Kenya to be held on March 4. 

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Either it Will ,,, OR ,,, it Won’t

Some of the memories I have of my mother involve the quirky sayings she used to say. When I asked my sisters to help me recall some of these sayings, the one they remembered the most, and the one that keeps resurfacing  in my memory is,  “either it will or it won’t”.

When faced with the daunting task of entertaining as many as 40 visitors at our Bible School facility for 3 days, I  almost had a meltdown.  Preparations included filtering drinking water, collecting and storing water for bathing, purchasing adequate food supplies and organizing for cooks, cleaning rooms  and arranging for sleeping places (which would be mattresses on the floor).

This would be the first such event at our Eldoret venue and I wanted it to be a success but I was overwhelmed almost to the brink of panic.  “What ifs” and disaster scenarios haunted me in the night as I tried to sleep.  Truly, this was too much for me.  Then, out of the blue, my mother’s quirky saying came to me – “either it will, or it won’t”.

Rather than embracing a fatalistic philosophy that any attempt to plan and prepare was futile as the events would take their own course, I was released from the panic of perfectionism that had gripped me.  Instead, “either it will or it won’t” took on a new meaning – put it in God’s hands and while I do my part, I allow God to take my best efforts to bring the plan to completion.   I felt like a great burden had been lifted off my shoulders.

It is hard to let go and allow God to take control when we (or rather I) have such a strong desire to be in control.   When I give God control, it means I trust him to give direction to my life and circumstances.  I can still make choices as in obedience to him, he comes along side me with his encouragement and guidance.  Didn’t James say – true wisdom comes from God.  Jesus said,  “Don’t worry”.  When we worry we actually demonstrate the opposite of “either it will or it won’t”.

My  mother also liked the song, “Don’t Worry – Be Happy”.

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