Saturday, May 31, 2008

I leave tomorrow for Kenya. I'm a little nervous, but I know my friends are behind me. :)

I will arrive in Mombasa at 11:30pm Monday night and leave Sunday afternoon at 3:00pm. I add some hours, so the actual time is only 24 hours. Please pray for my travels, and by-chance that I get some sleep on the plane which is unusual for me.

Thanks so much, and if you haven't downloaded the PRAYER LIST please do so now. Your prayers are SO important to me. Thanks!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Passport & Ticket: June 1, 2008

[Before I get started, please consider downloading this Prayer List for the summer trip and praying for me and the Kenya team.]

Well, it is settled, I am going to Kenya this summer. Sure that was the plan, but now I have my plane ticket and my 9 year old passport in hand (and yes, I was 17 years old when that picture was taken). It's official, like DFW to Amsterdam to Nairobi to Mombasa, June 1 - August 4 kind of official.

I am starting to get excited about my time in Kenya and all the crazy things I will get to do with the Kenya team, which by the way includes an addition of 6 month old Anjela Grace Omondi. Anjela is the soon to be adopted daughter of (currently niece of) Dennis and Allison Omondi. I'm excited that when I am serving in Mombasa for the long term that there will be another baby in my life, although it won't be the same as being able to visit my nephew Sean in Dallas, I will still be able to act out my Uncle Ben role by being an uncle to Anjela. You can compare / contrast between my American nephew and Kenyan pseudo-niece:

Anjela of course is on the left.
Sean on the right gettin' ready for a bath.

So, what the heck am I going to be doing in Kenya for 2 months! That's what I was wondering until I spoke with Dennis Omondi this week. For a while, I only had one or two goals for my trip this summer:

1) To grow in my relationships with my teammates and the people of the church we will work with, and 2) to get the most accurate picture of what it will be like to live in Kenya. These goals will assuredly still be accomplished, however, it is looking like things might be a little busier than I first thought.

I will be doing a lot of teaching while I am there. Every Sunday after church, Dennis and I will be going to a Bible Training Center for Leaders (BTCL) class and teaching Church History. Dennis has asked me to do most of the teaching, which I don't mind, but this Fall I will be taking the Church History class at, it's a little backwards. Or maybe not, maybe this is the best education I can get for church history. Learn it, teach it, and THEN go to class to study it! HA! Crazy. Secondly, the month of June is packed out with 2 pastors conferences where we will be teaching about church ministry and discipleship. The Helman family will be arriving the day before I arrive and running this first pastors conference from June 3-6, and then Dennis, myself, and Drew Trenz (a previous stinter in Mombasa making his 3rd trip to Kenya) will be teaching at the second conference from June 8-16. Not sure what I will be talking about there, but as long as I have a few hours to prepare and EVERYONE's praying, I'm sure God will use it.

My good friend Joshua Smith is still planning on being with us in Mombasa during June and then leaving for Nairobi for July and August to work with Africa Inland Mission (AIM). I'm praying that he might be able to get booked on the same flight out of DFW on June 1 so that my travel time isn't so lonely. Cynthia, an MTI classmate and fellow stinter, is hoping to spend as much of June and July in Kenya as she can, but is having support issues. Please pray that God would provide the finances for her to make this trip to Kenya.

Concerning my support, God has been gracious and I am doing well. My finances are looking good, but it can often be difficult to tell exactly where I am at concerning my goal for the summer. I could be on target, but I could be anywhere between $300-$500 off. Regardless, God has been amazing and even though I don't know exactly how much I need, God does. So pray with me that He would provide whatever it is that is needed for the summer.

I plan on blogging (BENYA) more during my time in Kenya because I expect I will have more to say than when I am in the states, so check that for updates. Also, I am planning on reading through all of the letters in the New Testament (Romans - Revelation) while I am in Kenya. It is just 3 chapters a day, and if you are looking for a reading plan this summer, why don't you join me? Reading Plan.

Please don't forget to download and print the prayer list! Thank you for your prayers. We'll keep in touch.