Archive for May, 2009

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Seeds are being planted…

May 29, 2009

Wow, today was an awesome day. We traveled about 2 hours NW of Nairobi to visit a city called Kijabe. In Kijabe, we visited the AIC (Africa Inland Church) Hospital to meet with a German missionary named Dorothy.

Dorothy shared her story of coming to faith, and she also shared about her call to missions. Dorothy grew up in Germany, where she studied agriculture in college. She came to the faith sometime during her college years, and married a Christian farmer named Thomas. Thomas had heard a call for work with Somalians, and he and Dorothy began a 9 year journey in prepraration for working with the Somalian people. Doors kept opening for her and her family, and they eventually found themselves in Wajir, Kenya (NE Kenya). Wajir is a community of Somalis. Apparently, there are 5-6 year waves of missionaries. Dorothy began to explain the nature of the Somalian people. She said that when 2 Somalian people tried to work out an issue, one or both usually ended up dead. From her explanation, it sounds like there’s not much compassion or empathy shown in these communities, and their Islamic “value” system only worsens their violence. Dorothy said the Somalians are very good at observing others, gathering resources, and they are very strategic in their planning. She mentioned the current state of the waters shared by Kenya and Somalia, and she explained how fisherman, computer geeks and weapon makers team up to hijak ships to terrorize waters. She also explained how it was very difficult for missionaries to stay in a Somalian community for long.

Our friend from LIA, Pamella, and her husband Francis also lived as missionaries in Wajir, Kenya for a time. Francis actually taught Dorothy and her husband the Somalian language. Anyways, Pamella and Dorothy were telling us that when they first relocated to Wajir, they were simply seen as outsiders. After a few years of becoming established in the community, the Somalians who were being protective would begin to study the missionary families. After a few years, the unwelcoming Somalians would eventually threaten the missionaries in some way so that they would leave. Dorothy was sharing a story about how three men came to faith during their time in the community. The Somalian men, however, were a little foolish- they went to the church, to friends’ homes, and to Dorothys’ house to share the news of their baptism. Mentioning baptism around Islamics who are very against the idea began to anger some of the non-Christian Somalians. Anyways, the day after the baptism, Dorothy, the church and other known Christians recieved threatning letters, and Dorothys famliy had to leave.

It was just amazing to hear about this womans story. I’ve read a few different books that talk about peoples experience in the mission field, but actually hearing it and being able to ask questions was so impactful on me. Dorothy then began to tell us how two German, Christian farmers began to serve at the Africa Inland Church Hospital. In 2002, the hospital was beginning to see an increase in Somalian patients, but not many on staff could translate, so Dorothy and her husband began working at the hospital to translate.

I realize that was a lot, and it may not have all been typed out very clearly, but Dorothy made an impact on me. I scribbled some notes down right after we talked to her:

  • Missions take a while; after you hear your call, it may take years of preparation before you actually “GO”
  • Establishing a home church is important; without that support and love from people at home, issues on field are even more difficult
  • Try to reconcile relationships at home prior to “GOING”; being immersed in a completely different culture, whether it’s the streets of NY or the streets of Sudan- you’re in a different lifestyle, and working on the relationships when you’re far away can be difficult
  • You can begin your mission field at home (in the States) by connecting with people who are from the culture that you’ll be working in
  • Get experience in the country! It’s okay to take a few weeks to check out the sights and learn more about the culture

And then the unevitable questions came to mind: Where do I go? When do I go?

Obviously these are things that need to be considered with lots of prayer and listening to God. I’m definetley feeling an even stronger call to enter into the mission field, which is absoultely scary and exhilirating at the same time. Scary because I don’t know what’s going to happen, where I’ll be sent, or how any of my past experiences will fit into God’s call. Exhilirating because God has given me the opportunity to Go and do his work. I’m just rambling now. I’m just excited 🙂

And, check out our team blog: www.mi2kenya09.blogspot.com. Our other Mi2 intern friends are over in Poland, so check out their blog and keep them in your prayers: www.mi2poland09.blogspot.com

And what post isn’t complete without a picture? Here’s a little kitty friend I made today, he was munchin on a french fry 🙂IMG_2678

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A peek at our Kenyan Condo!

May 25, 2009

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This is where we make food and eat meals! We have to flip 2 switches on the wall before we can turn on the stove!

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This is where Lauren, Courtney and I sleep!

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Kenya Post 1

May 22, 2009

We are actually here! Check out our team blog for our sleep-deprived post: www.mi2kenya09.blogspot.com

We’re in Kenya! I can’t really believe it!

Last night, we got picked up from the airport by Pamela and her husband Francis, and Jacob- who all work with LIA. Today, we met with Dr. Florence, the founder of LIA. She spent some time with us in prayer about the summer, and she also passed along her story of how LIA got started.

IMG_2455Here’s the whole Mi2 internship team before we left for our flights! LtoR (back row) Dane, Erich, Ben, Daniel. LtoR (front row) Courtney, Lauren, Me

IMG_2470Here’s a sneak peak of our residence! It’s a sneak peak because it takes forever to upload pictures! Okay, well I love you all, thanks for the continual prayers and support! The blog or facebook is probably the best way to contact me, E-mail takes too long to sort through 🙂

And thanks to the best boyfriend ever, Daniel for an awesome post!

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Packing is FINISHED!

May 16, 2009

I’m done packing! I always like to save packing till the last minute, because then if I forget anything, I really truly forgot it! I mean, I hate planning for weeks on end, only to realize that I’ve been forgetting something for weeks! I think I’ve got more than enough “stuff” to get me through the summer!

It’s been a BUSY past couple of days, and I’m more than ready for some time to dive into God’s word and team-build with the members of my Kenya team and the guys on the Poland team! White water rafting, here we come! We will show the river NO mercy!

If you’re around Louisville, PLEASE come to The Post at The Block at Southeast Christian Church on THIS Tuesday, May 19th at 7pm. We’ll have an AWESOME worship service and time of prayer for the Kenya and Poland interns!

Check out our team blog, www.mi2kenya09.blogspot.com!

Continue to pray for the safety of us all! Thanks for being such awesome readers!

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Family fun eating Gelato!

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More family fun! I’ll miss you guys!

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I have to be gone in four days?

May 12, 2009

Oh my goodness. I think being back at home may be more stressful than being at school. I’m not majorly stressed or anything, but I did have to make a “to-do” list for these last few days at home. And I’m not doing so well on completing it.

I did purchase my first skirt yesterday (along with a few $3 t-shirts, so I feel better about the weird skirt purchase). I’ve also got a huge load of laundry going. But I haven’t packed yet, and I haven’t done the bajillion other miscellaneous things that I need to. But, somehow, they will all be done by Saturday.

I’m so excited to have this pre-trip experience, mainly because I want that preparation and learning time. It’s getting hard to make time for EVERYONE and EVERYTHING before I jet!

Daniel and I are celebrating our one-month early one-year anniversary tomorrow! I can’t believe it’s been almost a year! It’s been awesome 🙂 I’m not sure exactly what we have planned- we each are planning some secret activity for Wednesday!

This past weekend I went to my cousin Sarah’s graduation. She graduated from the University of Louisville with a degree in Dental Hygeine! She also passed her boards, so now she’s just waiting on her license! Yay Sarah! Left to Right: Blake (in front), Elizabeth, Ellen, Sarah, Justin (sticking out in back), Allison, and myself at Sarah’s Graduation dinnner.

IMG_1916I’ve also had the time to catch up with our “team” of girls from high school. I’m so glad that I have AMAZING friends! We went around our group last night at Starbucks and just talked about where each of us thinks we’re going to live in the future. It’s so awesome to see everyone growing up! And even though we’ve all been apart for 3 years, we still can pick up where we left off! I WOULD post a group picture, but somehow we forgot to take one!

Psalms 18:49- Therefore I will praise you among the nations, O Lord; I will sing praises to your name.

How amazing will it be to praise the Lord with people THOUSANDS of miles away who worship our same Father?

Well, I guess I’ll be signing off now.

Be sure to check out these sites!

IMG_1932And I just felt like ending with this goofy picture of my 11 year old brother, Matthew. He’s pretty good at cheesing it up!

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17 Days till takeoff…

May 4, 2009

I cannot believe I’ll be getting on a plane to Kenya in 17 days! All that stands between me and the end of the semester:

  • Developmental Biology Final Exam (Friday, 8:30am)
  • Geoscience Final Exam (Friday, 12:30pm)
  • Theater Final Presentation (Friday, 6:30pm)

Then I’ll be heading home, where I have a mere week before our Kenya team heads down to Tennessee for some group bonding! Things are moving SO quickly!

Daniel gave me a copy of “The New Friars” that he recieved from the organization he’s working with this summer, InnerChange. I am in love with this book. The book is all about the new movement of people willing to sacrifice everything for their Lord. The book details how these “new friars” have adopted principles of historical Christian orders such as the Franciscan, Jesuit, Poor Claretian, and Celtic traditions. The author talks about young adults who had every resource that any other middle-class American has: food, financial security, education, loving families- yet God has called these young adults to drop everything and live among the suffering poorest of the poor.

Jesus Christ himself lived among the lowest of the low- human beings. He could have lived in lavish palaces, but his Father sent him to live among the people. We too are supposed to imitate Christ, by living among our Brothers and Sister in Christ (or who do not yet know Christ). The stories in the New Friars are radical. Can you imagine dropping everything to go live in garbage slums in another country?! Can you imagine intermingling and dwelling with people who have never heard of computers, who don’t care about what they look like, and who may not know Christ?

This book has really spoken to my heart. I’m glad I got the chance to read it before heading overseas. I’ll admit, I complain a lot. This book gave me a wake up call of sorts- God has given me a chance to live as the Kenyans live. I imagine that this summer will be a very humbling experience. Instead of being anxious and complaining about how things in Kenya may not be “suited” to my “American standards”, I am now looking foward to being totally immersed in their culture. The New Friars take on such radical lifestyles so that boundaries of class, wealth and any heirarchies are broken down. This allows us to equalize ourselves among the people we are reaching out to.

Anyways, it’s a great book, I highly recommend it!

On another note… I’m still short on some money, but I have faith that God will provide!

AND be sure to check out our group blog at www.mi2kenya09.blogspot.com to “meet” the other memebers of the Kenya team!