The aftermath of tribal violence: Widows caring for orphans in the slums of Eldoret
I received a touching letter the other day from my friends in Kenya, updating me on God’s work there since Kent Burgess and I visited last February. I will reprint excerpts from it below. I appreciate so much what God has stirred in their hearts and that it continues to bear fruit by drawing hearts to Jesus.
At the same time we continue to help with many physical needs there. Just last week the mom of one of the men, who drove us around Kenya, died in a hospital. They would not release the body until the $1400.00 hospital bill was paid. No one could afford that amount, so we sent it. Without your generosity for the brothers and sisters there, we would not be able to help them in the way we have. We’ve been blessed to be a conduit over the past three years to get tens of thousands of dollars on the ground in Kenya to help relieve the suffering of widows, orphans, and homeless people.
So, though I am the focus of their gratitude because it has come through me, I know that a lot of this appreciation goes to countless people who read this blog and listen to The God Journey. Thank you for making a difference in this corner of the world. Please know that these needs are ongoing. We will continue to send money out of our abundance to help alleviate the suffering and provide for those who have nothing to eat, or no way to begin a small business that can provide for their needs.
If you would like to be part of this to support these brothers and sisters and see the Gospel grow in this part of Africa, please see our Sharing With the World page at Lifestream. You can either donate with a credit card there, or you can mail a check to Lifestream Ministries • 1560-1 Newbury Rd #313 • Newbury Park, CA 91320. Or if you prefer, we can take your donation over the phone at (805) 498-7774.
But please enjoy this letter and know you all have my heartfelt thanks for the prayers and contributions many of you have made to help touch the lives of these dear people in Kenya:
Living loved and loving others is only the answer which gives us to know the image of Christ, and the Bible says in John 3:16 God loved the world so much and he sent his begotten son that whoever believes in him shall not perish but will have eternal life. In verse 17, says God did not send his son to judge the world but the world to be saved through him. I thank God through his servant who has really touched our lives, Bro. Wayne Jacobsen for his books, Authentic Relationships and He Loves Me which have truly encouraged us.
A powerful force—the God who wants us to be loved! God is changing the lives of many brothers’ and sisters’ life’s and transitioning us not to have religion but instead to have relationship. One of the great changes that has occurred in us was to separate the African pastor from religion, organization and institutions. I can start with myself. But right now I thank God that the stronghold of religion has been now broken down, and I am free to love, to care and to serve. And a hundred other brothers have now responded and God has transformed their lives. We have come to realize and repent for requesting you to be our mentor or spiritual cover, when we have Jesus already as our mentor, friend and our cover, we have come also to repent our titles of Bishop, Apostle, Pastor, Prophet or any other title rather than to live and accept our brothers and sisters and care the way Jesus cared for us. I repent for being a director of people without seeing Jesus Christ as the director of the whole church universal and the overseer of our souls.
God connected us with Wayne for the purpose of my spiritual transition so that I may be instrument to help others, I have come now to know that the love of God will guide us. I love this God. We understood him in wrong doctrine that God is angry with us wherever we mess up and that he is holding a very big sword ready to kill and punish us. Many have said that famine, poverty, disaster, and all kind of calamities are the sword the of God’s punishment upon us. Even African pastors still believe that HIV/AIDS is the plague of God. So we repent to think that God is angry with us. We repent that the missionary who came in Africa taught us how to obey title, leaders, and structures and also taught us that God can be only be found in building institutions.
So we are not praising or honouring brother Jacobsen but we thank God who used him to help us become instruments of God. Everybody wanted Brother Jacobsen to come back again next year, but he told us that we don’t need Jacobsen or Lifestream. We just need Jesus Christ and have the fellowship with him so that we may live loved and love others too. Wayne, you may or may not come but what you left here for your trip in Kenya, I can agree with you that surely we don’t need you, but we need Jesus who will help us to live loved and to love others.
I can remember while Jesus was on the earth he loved the people, he associated with the sinners but he hatred the sin, he did those who are hunger, and clothed those who are naked he touched many lives. This same ministry the African church has seen in you. You stepped into the post election violence and in every port you rescued the lives of those who were in refugee camps, provided for the unschooled children, helped the homeless, and stood with the widows and orphans. Micro-finances are being given out to help people be self-reliant. This is not a denomination that you have started here Lifestream Ministry or because you partner with IGEM, but you and the brethren over there have helped us as an African Church to realize that your image of the church is true.
We’re finding out now more about helping find some land and a facility outside of the slum for the dear women and children pictured above. You can’t believe the conditions they live in. An open sewage drain runs through the play area. They have almost nothing to live on. They’ve been praying God would provide them a home. We’re praying about helping them relocate. This will cost a significant amount. If you’re interested in helping us do that, please write Sara from our contact page and let her know. We’ll put out details when we get them if we think we have enough people who want to help. Thanks.