Alicia writes:
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Today was a BUSY day for us! We started off at the women’s prison to deliver Bibles to the inmates. There were only 28 women (1 of them also had a baby), and we got to introduce ourselves, share a quick Word, hear from a few of them, and then give out Bibles translated into Luo. You wouldn’t believe the gratitude of these women–these women whose area of the prison is smaller than a soccer field, these women who have sentences up to 10 years, these women who feel like they have no hope in the world…THESE are the women who are overwhelmed with gratitude at the gift of a Bible.

Then we went straight to the men’s prison to hand out Bibles. Because we had already visited the men, we didn’t have as much time with them, but we did get to hear some AMAZING answers to prayer that have taken place since our visit earlier this week. Several men have been found not-guilty and released, and one man in particular stood up to tell us that he was arrested on 10 counts but this week it was decreased to only 1–PRAISE JESUS!

From the prisons, we headed off to Adiedo Secondary School. Most of the students are Seventh Day Adventists, so we were with them on their Sabbath and got to be a part of their church service. What amazed me was the fact that the entire service–welcoming, worship, ushering, the message–was run completely by the students. And Derek (the boy who gave the sermon) could PREACH!! Man oh man, he could give Pastor Joe a run for his money! ;) At the end of the service we had time to answer some of their questions, and much like at the other high schools, it was so interesting to hear their questions and realize how similar they are to high schoolers in America, and yet at the same time so incredibly different. But once again, what I notice most about them is how grateful they are, how appreciative of everything they have and all the opportunities they are given. We can learn a lot from these Kenyan teenagers.

After a quick lunch at the school, some of our group had the opportunity to visit the homes of their sponsor children, while the rest of us went to Pastor Samuel’s church to hand out gifts to the rest of the children who are sponsored. If you sponsor a child through SOHI, you can rest assured that your child was taken care of today! We got to hand out some gifts that sponsors sent with us, and we also got to hand out colored pencils (a HOT commodity to the students), crayons, and pencils–you would be amazed at the joy at receiving something that we consider to simple. It was such a blessing for us to be able to bless those children with the gifts people like you sent along with us–thank you for your generosity!

To end the day, a number of us got to tour a farm in the area. I truly felt like I was at Greenbluff in Kenya (but with mangos instead of pumpkins, bananas instead of apples, and sugar cane instead of caramel apples)! It never ceases to amaze me how hard these Kenyans work, and it REALLY never ceases to amaze me how constantly grateful they are–we drove to THEIR farm and interrupted their workday, and yet THEY profusely expressed their gratitude simply because we took the time to stop by.

And that’s my prayer for us today, that we would live lives saturated with gratefulness. That we would find something to be grateful for not just in each day, but in each situation, each moment. That we would often stop just to thank God for the good in our lives (because there is a LOT of it).

So Jesus, we thank You. Thank You that You are GOOD all the time. Thank You that being good is Your nature, that You can truly be nothing else but good. Thank You for the immense, undeserved blessings You have heaped on every single one of us. I pray we would be overwhelmed with gratitude for all You have done for us, all You are doing for us, and all that is yet to come for us. We love You, and we pray You would give us all thankful hearts. Amen!