We got into Kenya and got our luggage and went straight to HEART, where we stayed for the night. On our way to HEART I got an overwhelming feeling of, why am I here? I just felt like I didn't have anything to bring to the table and I didn't deserve to be here, and it just felt really heavy on my heart for the next few days. The next morning we got up early and headed for the slums in Nairobi, where we worked with Community Transformers, a group who helps the local people who live in the slums and need aid. We split into two different groups and headed out. My group went and saw two women who both had HIV. The first woman's name was Joyce. Her husband is positive for HIV and is no longer living in their house because he doesn't want to take responsibility and get a job. Joyce has two children, and both are positive also. When she was talking to us she was telling us that when she gets sad or down, her kids see that, especially the older girl and that really affects her schooling because she's so worried about her mom. These women that we met were so inspiring because they love God, and they trust God so much. And to see how much Community Transformers is doing in their lives is absolutely amazing. After visiting the two women we came back to their office and we were able to wash the Community Transformer team's hands and feet. It was very cool.
The next day was the Fun Day that we put on for all of our sponsored children. It was an incredible day. We got there and started setting up immediately. Pretty soon, the kids started showing up. We grabbed a frisbee and a soccer ball and started playing with them. After about an hour the little girl that my family sponsors, Nduleve, showed up. I walked up to her and hugged her and she smiled so big. It was so great. Side note, I am so greatful for the Hoverson Family because Nduleve's sister came with her and she was going to have to go all the way home, but the Hoverson's sponsored her right there. How awesome are they??? So great! Nduleve and I went and played soccer and just played with the rest of the kids. It was great fun. The whole day was great. There was tea and crafts and silly dancing and singing and tons of fun. There was one point in the day where I was hugging on Nduleve and she wrapped her arms around me, and it was just such a great moment. We also got to meet my grandparents sponsor child, which was super cool! He is so sweet and super fun, and such a good kid. It was so great to spend time with all the kids. Seeing all these sponsor kids makes sponsoring a kid real. We've sponsored kids in the past, but it was just paper. This is real, I was able to love on these kids and see them laugh and smile and play with them. It was great. 3:00 came way to soon, and we had to say goodbye. Saying goodbye to Nduleve was really hard because she is so sweet and it was so great to love on her.
The next day was church. I woke up with my heart feeling really heavy from everything, and I was just trying to deal with it. We ate breakfast, and walked to church. The service started and worship started, and everything just came crashing down on me. I looked around and saw all the people around me worshiping God for all He has done for them and there I was standing there, worrying about the way I was swaying or the way I looked. I felt so self-centered and then those questions of "why am I here?" and "I'm not qualified to be here" came swarming into my head. And then I thought of the women in the slums, and all the kids and people we saw in the slums and how my problems don't even begin to compare to theirs. It was too much for me to handle at the moment. I had to step outside. I broke down in tears with everything and Sarah, Cindy, and Mike all came out to make sure I was ok. I told them everything I was feeling and they told me things I really needed to hear. I don't have to be qualified. God is qualified for me. I don't have to be enough, God is enough for me. Those words just blew my mind. We went back in and listened to the service and at the end, Pastor Williams told us all the we are wonderful. I am wonderful. It was exactly what I needed to hear. And then when the music came back on, a little girl named Mwende came and grabbed my hands and started dancing with me. It was perfect. She didn't leave my side the whole time we were there, and then while we walked home.
Today was really cool. We started building the house. We carried bricks, went to the river to get water, mixed cement, and put the bricks together with the cement. We also were able to play with the kids that were there, which were so cute and so much fun to play with! I ran around chasing one of the little girls, and we played soccer with the other kids. It was so much fun. We got so much of the house done. We will finish the house before we leave Kenya, which is extremely awesome! We came back from the building and went to the market to get materiel for skirts and to get avocados for guacamole. While we were walking through, we saw little Mwende in walking through and she followed us to the seamstress's shop and played with us for a while. It was a great day.
So far this has been a crazy couple of days. I've gone through the full range of emotions but it's been great. I'm loving this beautiful country and all the wonderful people in Kenya. I can't begin to explain how thankful I am to be here and how awesome my team is and what an incredible time it'll be. Keep praying for my team and I. I'll try and keep you updated when I can. =]
|Nduleve and I at the Fun Day.|
|The whole group and all the sponsored kids.|
I am fearfully and wonderfully made.