Got up early this morning and had breakfast with the Kuerts at their home and then we all headed to the East Africa School of Theology where I would be speaking to the leaders this morning. It took us an hour and a half to make what should have been a very short trip. Traffic was crazy. But it gave me more time to look over my notes. Part of the issue was it was raining hard and there were some breakdowns and accidents.
I received such a warm welcome from the women's leaders. They were so excited I was there. The Kenyan women are so incredibly hospitable and treat their guests in such an incredible way. To experience these leaders in worship and prayer was an awesome thing. I have never seen such a passionate group of people than these people when they begin to pray or sing and it is so genuine. After worship, Barb introduced me (again as Mama Dustin - I love that!) and the first thing Barb did after introducing me was to say that I had brought a suitcase full of things for the ladies, starting with the leaders, and that we had jewelry sets for all of them specifically. They went crazy with delight! Mama Joshua (one of the sectional leaders) started passing them out and the ladies were beside themselves with glee. Barb was trying to go on in asking me to come and begin speaking but the excitement in the room was so great we just gave up. We took time (probably 15 minutes at least) for every woman to get her necklace and earrings and then to actually put it on! Mama Tafia (national director) had one that matched her outfit so perfectly it was as if God had designed it just for her. After everything died down from passing the jewelry out, we tried it again and I got up to speak. I spoke to them about pressing on despite discouragement and things that come our way in ministry. At the conclusion I had the "Ministry Survivor Africa" bookmarks to give them and they loved them too!!!
Mama Taifa (the national women's director) got up afterward and said, "this WAS definitely the Word of the Lord for us as it is exactly what many of you are dealing with..." she was exhorting the women and said, "we must pray again after this message and deal with what God has said to us. And they started passionately praying again for the longest time. I was amazed. Afterwards, they had their business meetings all day to handle national business, and I went out for the day with another missionary, Bonnie. When we left, the national general superintendent's wife, Mama Willie, told Barb that it was exactly what the leaders of the nation needed to hear and that Satan tried to come against this message being delivered and she had no doubt I was God's person to be here. It was so encouraging to hear this from Barb.
After speaking I left with Bonnie and we went to lunch. She took me to another area of Nairobi and we went to a place called Java House. OH MY. Not only was the food incredible, but get this...the water at this place is perfectly safe and Bonnie said, "go ahead and order an iced tea - I guarantee you will not get sick." So I did. I was so excited. Not only did I get an iced tea but it was one of the best I've ever had in my life and no, it's not because I haven't had any for five days! It was genuinely THAT good.
We had such a good time talking and sharing. She's an incredibly woman with so many ministry stories to tell. We were stuck in traffic for hours today going everywhere we needed to go but the time just flew as we had so much to talk about concerning ministry. Next we went to the airport to try and get my money for my shoes but they did not have the person there who is supposed to take care of it so I have to go back Friday. After that we went shopping!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was great. Bonnie took me to a place she takes everybody and so the owner knows her and gave us a discount on every item. I got some great stuff, including the PERFECT African dress for me. Obviously, it's PINK! I was so excited, I let out a squeal like I often to when I'm excited and the two Kenyan guys running the place must have looked at me and thought, "crazy American woman" but I didn't care!
We drove home and it was getting dark but Bonnie is a pro just like Barb and knows how to navigate. As we were getting into the car to leave a group of men were standing on next to our car where it was parked. As I was going for the door one of them looked at me and said, "Hey, white person!" and I thought, "oh no...what does he want?" and jumped in the car and locked the door. I said to Bonnie, "what in the world did he want?" Bonnie said money. I said, "why did he say, "hey white person!"?? Bonnie said, "that's all he knows of you...so that's what he said. This is why you are glad you have missionaries to guide you closely.
We went home to the Kuerts and they were waiting for me with dinner ready. It was so awesome. They had rice with peanut sauce which is one of my favorite things...I eat peanut sauce type stuff back in the USA too. We sat and talked for HOURS during dinner...wonderful conversation about ministry stuff.
Right now I just repacked my things to go stay at the school tomorrow and it's late here - so I need to get to bed as I'm speaking to the leaders again first thing in the morning and then the other conference attendees (several thousand of them) will descend upon the campus. I can hardly wait! Keep praying.
The internet at the school may not be available. As with every time I post, it could be my last until I get back to Tampa. I may have to finish the Kenya Chronicles once I get home, but if I get a moment and a computer at the school is available with up and running internet, I'll post.
Love to all...