Mary Kate had a strange vision while she was at a training event in Nebraska last year. She has a vision of three distressed boys in Africa and an inclination that she was suppose to go on a trip with me to Africa to find them. That is a lot of pressure especially when I have vocally made it known that I don't take girls on Missions trips and even if I did how would we ever find these these three boys with out God totally intervening. To make a long story short, Mary Kate became a catalyst this year. This was the first year that I have opened the invitation for female students to join our team and I am so glad that I did. God used them to extend our ministry reach in profound ways. And as for the three boys? While we were driving through a very remote dry region we found three young boys living out there without their families. I had never seen anything like it in my life. They did not even have a shelter of any kind. Mary Kate wasted no time in giving them our teams water. She expressed her deep care for them as tears filled her eyes. God was surely on the move in a profound way.
It was at a park when I saw John come truly alive. John had the opportunity to minister deep in the bush and saw God do great things but it was in the city talking to skaters where John seemed to be most in his zone. Skateboarding is a new sport in Nairobi and our team was blessed to meet the "best" skater of the city. John talked to him with ease. It was like they had known each other for a long time. John later had the opportunity to lead this young guy to Christ and God only knows if there is a future ministry waiting to be birthed here.
Charlie seemed to always be looking for opportunities. When we pulled over to meet some moran warriors Charlie seemed to be in the zone. His conversation with them was fluid as he presented to truth of Christ to them. The men responded and Charlies burden for tribal people has only expanded. While on the trip he made a discovery about a tribe that is virtually unknown to the outside world. He is currently making plans on how to best launch a disciple making movement among them.
Taylor was our youngest student on the team and this was her first mission trip. She faced off with fear more than anyone else, but it was her compassion and "nursing" heart that drove her to not let fear have the final say. As Taylor interacted with disadvantaged people her heart broke for them. As our team was in "little mogadishu" she noticed a boy with a large deformity on his head. The growth nearly doubled the size of his head. While most would turn away, Taylor told us that that was a defining moment for her. She wanted to reach out to those that are overlooked or ignored because of an illness.
Kristen's ability to draw and communicate through art is unrivaled. Her art had potential to draw in large crowds in literally no time. Everyone wanted to see what she was drawing whether it was a portrait, a picture of Jesus, or something symbolic - it worked. When she discovered that the wives of certain tribe had very little freedoms her heart broke. She was awakened to a new type of slavery. One that involved arranged marriages of girls that were as young as eleven years old. When she discovered that husbands could later sell their wives to other men once they grew tired of them she was broken even more. Kristen is now trying to discern how to best use her art to free these women from this injustice. Perhaps even selling her art to purchase enslaved wives to freedom.