NEWS MID SEPTEMBER 2014
A sick lady in the hospital here in Maseno asked for prayer one evening a few months ago. Her own illness didn’t seem to trouble her. What very much troubled her was that her son was not getting in touch with her at all. She had not heard from him for years. Today when I came I was told ‘someone is looking for you’. I met the same lady. “The night you prayed for me” she said “my son called me, we talked, and he even sent some money to help me clear my hospital bill”. Give thanks!
Done! A colleague working on mission research asked me to write a chapter for a book he is working on. The book is to be entitled: bundant Life: Wealth, Health, and Money in Christian Mission in Africa. He asked me to contribute a chapter looking at foreign mission and money. I think it was a record – a week later I had the chapter written and had already sent it to him! Give thanks for the inspiration I had that enabled me to do this. Of course I don’t yet know if the chapter will be accepted. Meanwhile I am also making progress on the book that I talked of in my last news.
We have invited Western missionaries living in this area to a day of ‘encouragement for learning local languages’. This will be in Kisumu on 26th September. I do not know whether 2 will turn up or 20. Either way, the numbers is up to God. I know that many missionaries have a profound desire to learn local languages so as to be able to communicate better with African people. Yet actually doing it can prove very difficult, and many get discouraged. Pray for that day, and for what God will have us to share with them. (These days I seem to be the longest serving Western missionary around by far, and also by far the most fluent in local languages.) See here for details of the planned day’s event.
Within the next week or two, up to 300 mission leaders in the UK are to receive personal invitations to a vulnerable missions’ conference to be held in Oxford in April of next year. I am one of two people whom they are encouraged to contact for details or with whom to discuss the importance of attending the Oxford events. Three other events are also planned to be held in the UK in April next year. Two additional events will be in Germany. Pray that we will be able to articulate what we are saying clearly.
A couple of years ago some folks, paid by the UN I think, came to the school at which my children are studying. They were giving out free condoms and telling the children how to use them. That night when the children came home I had to tell them that the folks at the school were misleading them! This issue has troubled a lot of parents and leaders in our communities: ‘why are government funded bodies encouraging our children into sexual immorality’, we were asking ourselves? Who knows how many young people’s lives have been ruined as they have rushed into sexual relations with an apparent stamp of approval from their teachers, only to get pregnant, sick, confused, and to realise that they are sinning against God. Pray that the powers that be see sense and encourage morality instead of condoms. (See this book by Green and Ruark about Africa: AIDS b_ehaviour and culture: understanding evidence based prevention.)