Sunday, July 22, 2012

July 21, 2012

Tukosalama hapa katika Etago, Kenya.
Mungu, alitubariki sana.
Watoto wamefurahishwa na mafundisho yetu. Tumefundisha mengi ambayo tulikuwa tumejiandaa nayo.
Tuko na uhusiano mzuri na waalimu. Mungu ametujalia kufundisha neno lake.
Tunamshukuru Mungu kwa kutujalia nafasi hii.
Tafadhali mutuombee sisi pamoja na ndugu zetu walio hapa Etago.
In Christ,
(Written with the help of one of our Pastors here in Etago)
Matthew about said it all! We have been very blessed here in Etago, with friends, fellowship, children who continuously put smiles on our faces, random happy strangers, and the most wonderful families we could ever have to take care of us.
Friday morning, Gretchen, Jennifer, and I all began our 1k walk down to the school, slightly late, but TIA (this is Africa), so time is irrelevant here. When we were about a block or two away from the school, we could already hear the joyous voices singing our favorite song—"Boom to the Lord." Every word was heard perfectly from that far away, and we even sang along as we continued on into the school, where the sound was indescribable. These children love to sing and they put their entire heart and soul into every song. It's incredible--the joy in their faces, the enjoyment in their body language as some of them tap their feet to the beat while others throw their entire bodies into it, and the sound. The sound is so loud I can feel my eardrums shaking. It's amazing. It's beautiful. I could sit there all day, listening to those children sing. Fridays are my favorite day for this reason. They sing for about an hour every Friday morning for a special program that they put together, sharing so many wonderful songs with us. There is really no other way for me to describe it but beautiful.
This Friday, after the children were done singing their songs, we Mission Helpers sang "What a Friend We Have In Jesus" and "Rock of Ages" with a few of the teachers here. After school on Tuesday and Thursday we sat for about an hour each day, just flipping through song books, singing a few songs in the Kisii language and a few in English, picking a couple to sing for the program on Friday. It was so fun, just sitting around, enjoying fellowship with this group of people, praising God with song. The teachers also sang a very nice version of "Nothing but the Blood of Jesus" for the program on Friday. It was…you guessed it, beautiful.
We went to a church today (Saturday) to teach our seven C's lessons, and afterward we shared in fellowship, singing, games, and just each other's company. We listened to a group of them sing a very African song with a guitar and the occasional African "yodel" if you can imagine that sound in your head. Only one word could describe this song—beautiful.
Singing is definitely one of the favorite ways, if not the favorite, for people to worship and express themselves here. The joy is imminently shown upon their faces, through their body language, and most definitely through the force and strength they put in their vocal chords. The words touch their hearts as well as the hearts of those who listen, clearly showing the Lord's hand working here in East Africa.
These voices, the Work happening here, the love that our Savior has given us—beautiful. Bwana asifiwe—in song, in prayer; in all things.

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