Praise the Lord!
Praise God in His sanctuary;
praise Him in His mighty Heavens!
Praise Him for His mighty deeds;
praise Him according to His excellent greatness!
Praise Him with trumpet sound;
praise Him with lute and harp!
Praise Him with tambourine and dance;
praise Him with strings and pipe!
Praise Him with sounding cymbals;
praise Him with loud crashing cymbals!…
Psalm 150:1-6

 

One of my favorite things so far about our time in Kenya is that no matter where we go, we get to worship and sing and dance with the people we meet. The primary schools, the secondary schools, Pastor Michael’s church, the Crusade…there is ALWAYS singing and dancing going on. And today was no exception.

We started our day ay Kobila Secondary School (high school), and as with every other school we’ve visited, we were welcomed with song and dance from the students. I asked David how we were going to visit a school on a Saturday, and I learned that all the secondary schools here are boarding schools, so the students who board have class time over the weekends as well! I also learned that with boarding schools, the government doesn’t allow any visitors (even parents) during the week, which is why we went on a Saturday. Bri shared her testimony with the students, and then we broke off into smaller groups divided by age and gender.

In the small groups, we each shared a bit of our own stories, and then we had time for the students to write questions down for us to respond to. It’s so interesting to me how their lives and their struggles are so similar to ours and yet at the same time, so different–we had questions about peer pressure, boyfriends/girlfriends (Kenyan high schooler hormones run just as rampant as Americans’), sex, alcohol… the same questions I hear from Life Center students weekly. But then we also had questions like, “what do I do if I am raped?”, “what do I do if a man wants to sponsor me (pay for their school fees, uniforms and books) but I don’t want to have sex with him in return?”, “what can we do as girls to protect ourselves?”. It’s shocking to me the obstacles these students, the girls in particular, have to overcome every single day to get an education.

We then headed to Omboga Secondary school, where we were again welcomed with song and dance (I’m tellin’ you…these people know how to throw a welcoming party). When the singing and dancing was done and we were all settled down, a teacher welcomed us and told us a bit about the school, including their dire needs for better access to clean water, and for new dorms–currently, most of the boys just sleep on the floors of their classrooms because that’s their best option. Again–the obstacles these students have to overcome for an education are mind-blowing.

Below: Kids at the Crusade with Emily, Alicia, & Shelbi

Shelbi shared her story, and we again broke into small groups. We heard some heart-breaking stories (such as the girl who lost her parents to AIDS and has trouble paying her own school fees), and we also heard some inspiring dreams (to go to Oxford or Harvard, to become a lawyer, a nurse). We sang some more, we talked about life in America, and we, of course, talked about Jesus.

After lunch (which we brought along with us to eat at Omboga), we headed to day 2 of the Crusade. We played with the hundreds of kids, we shared stories with their parents, and we sang and danced like CRAZY in worship of the Lord. One Kenyan asked us if we even knew what the songs were saying and we said no, but dancing with them is the best form of worship we’ve ever experienced. Sammy shared another Word, we offered the opportunity to accept Jesus, and we prayed over the people in need of provision, healing, and MIRACLES. Day 2 of the Crusade had about double the people of Day 1, and tomorrow we are expecting even more people to show up, so let’s be praying that God would show up in big ways, too.

So Jesus, we praise Your great and mighty name. I want to praise you with as much passion and love and joy as these Kenyans do, because we know You are deserving of that and so much more. I pray for the Crusade tomorrow, that You would fill us with Your Holy Spirit to minister over these people, that You would bring the people who need to be there, and that You would be prepare all of us to experience You in ways we never have before. AMEN.

~ Alicia

 

Below:  Kobila secondary school

Below: Day 2 of Crusade