McClenahens to Mozambique
"…That they may have life, and have it to the full." John 10:10

Life in Kenya

August 16, 2014 by rkmcclenahen

JAMBO from the land of hot showers and English-speakers! (Well… sort of English-speakers.) The last month since arriving here in Kenya has seemed to fly by in some ways! Mentally, we have been too busy to have too many thoughts outside of our training; physically this month has been a LONG one. We’re already settled in our 3rd place here, have had 2 baby doctor visits and a sonogram, attended a 3 week orientation training with AIM, and are now starting to feel a bit settled with our things mostly out of suitcases and with enough space and time of our own to feel like a functioning family again. Just about 3 weeks left until our baby girl is scheduled to arrive, but we are definitely ready for her any time now! It’s been a little strange coming into a city environment in Nairo???????????????????????????????bi (where we are now) and Nakuru (where our conference was held) after getting used to a slower pace and less amenities in Pemba. However, we are back to being without a personal vehicle, so that seems to balance out the niceties a bit. Just yesterday we started out intending to take a taxi to the shopping center, but decided the taxi available was too expensive. After dragging an 8 month pregnant lady and 2 toddlers more than a mile by foot, we didn’t
have too much extra energy to actually shop once we arrived! (So we had to refuel first at the conveniently placed “Java House”- one of our favorite new spots for a treat!)

We are thankful for the time we spent at our Africa Based Orientation conference. There we were able to meet missionaries just starting out with AIM in all different locations and capacities, and also to receive training and updates from veteran missionaries and African Christians themselves. As a part of the course, we also had the opportunity to visit local African churches, as well as an African mosque, and a few locations of “Transformational Development” projects, where the gospel is being spread in conjunc006tion with equipping local people with resources needed for them to live a better life. The kids even joined in on the fun. They were in daycare from 8:30am until about 5:00 pm throughout the time, and had the chance to meet lots of friends- there were about 10 children in their class that were all under the age of 3! Amelia got to join in the “big kids’ class” every morning for their instructional time about Africa, and we are still discovering some of the things she picked up while there. Her favorite craft was making a pair of binoculars out of toilet paper rolls, which she used to look at the zebras and baboons we saw out the bus window coming back from Nakuru to Nairobi (about a 3 hour ride).

One of the main concepts we have been digesting and strategizing about is how to make the gospel relevant in an African culture, and specifically among the Mwani. Some of the questions to be considered:

-How do you address polygamy?

-Is it wrong to call God Allah?

-How do you incorporate cultural things like drum music when they have so far only been known as playing a part in other non-biblical spiritual exercises?

-What of our viewpoint is Western and what is Biblical??

We still have a lot to 075learn about the Mwani culture before we can even apply this to our ministry much, but another thought has also struck us as important…. There is no culture or person who needs to first be “prepared” by someone like us to receive the gospel. God has been at work among the Mwani long before we came to Africa, and we cannot wait to learn of ways the gospel can be easily illustrated by already local stories or concepts/values. Please pray along with us for these issues to be made clear as we continue on!

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JUST FYI:

Helpful hints for attending a church in Africa:

Don’t expect the time frame to be anywhere near exact or even expressed

Come prepared to preach! Rusty was the lucky one out of our group to be designated this privilege!

Realize that singing involves movement and actions

Bring toilet paper…. Enough said.

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