During August, I had the privilege to spend time at a church in the Nairobi suburbs. Our team spoke at the conference organized by the church. The depths of their faith inspired me and I hope it will inspire you, too.
I can sum the situation for many in Kenya up in one word: hopeless. The unemployment rate for those under 30 years of age is over 15% and countless people earning less than $2,000 per year. Poverty surrounds the church and many of the parishioners struggle to feed;
The message from the conference focused on these verses: 2 Corinthians 4:8-10 (NIV): 8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.
They worshipped with joyful hearts; they cried out to God in prayer and they danced with hearts full of hope despite their troubles. Over four hundred people gathered for the two-day conference to proclaim their faith in God. Some even slept on the floor of the church between the days because they could not afford to stay anywhere else and they did not want to miss it. Would my faith remain as strong as their if I experienced similar circumstances?
Why Do We Go?
Why did we go? We went, at the invitation of the pastor, to share our hope with the church. As the Holy Spirit comforts us, so we can comfort others. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4; “All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” (NLT).
An Amazing Conference
But something amazing happened. Through their example, I saw how our difficulties may feel heavy, but their weight has a purpose. We can use them to drive us into deeper intimacy with God, strengthening us and anchoring us to the steady hope of his love. Romans 5:3-5; “We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.” (NLT). A trip like this is live changing. I received more than I gave as I watched our Lord at work in the lives of His people. We did also enjoy a few days of seeing God’s creation.
Grace and Peace to you,
Yvonne M. Morgan is a Christian #author, #blogger, and #speaker. #BibleGatewayPartner
Matthew 28:19 “Therefore, GO and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”