Trust me, I realized that I have not posted reflections or much update on things that happened on the trip or after the trip. Some of you know bits and pieces because you were apart of the prayer chain who received emails from us as the trip was going. So I thought I would go ahead and bit by bit talk about some of the things that went on and some of the things that I learned on the trip and what God was speaking to my heart there. These posts will not be in order as they happened….
In case you did not know I love kids! Love VBS ! I love talking to kids about Jesus and just loving them! While in Tanzania the Lord really blessed me with the opportunity to hang out with some of His kids!
On the trip for 3 days we held I guess what you would call a leadership conference. It was pretty sweet the men on the trip did the teaching. Well we held the conference in some building they rented in Kigoma, it was a good size and it had plenty of room outside for people to hangout and fellowship during break time. There was also a small gate at the entrance. I remember the first day Me and Iris were not there for the majority of the conference. We were in a nearby village called Kamala (IDK if I spelt that right) visiting a childrens school that had been built by a local ministry as well as where that ministry held their cooking school and sewing class(more about that visit later).
Anyway, once back we were able to listen in on one of the last teachings and afterwards I was standing outside the building and noticed all the kids standing beyond the gate and peering in. They were all different ages…some looked as young as 4….dirty no shoes torn, old clothes, precious and beautiful. One of my bros on the trip came up beside me and said that there were many kids who hung around during the conference and that it is a good opprotunity to gather them and talk with them. So that night I prayed!! I asked God to help me prepare for meeting those kids the following morning….what would a say with them …what could I do with them while the conference was going on….and I prayed that the lord would bring kids if it was His will that I should talk to them. I prayed and I read the word, prayed and read.
The next morning I asked Gabe…if there was someone he could get that I could grab…lol “in case the lord so led me to speak to the kids” ….who was I foolin; lol I knew that the lord wanted me to!! I can be so stubborn sometimes. So he got his brother, Tryphond(idk how to spell it) to be my translator! and seriously this is how it went down ….I was talking to His brother one minute then I turn around for what seemed like a second….turn back around and Tryphond had 4 kids with him saying ok lets go! As we sat down in the grass a few more kids came to join us… and the slowly kept coming….Here is a pic of our beginning little group.
So to begin we asked the kids there names. And then I asked them if they knew Jesus. If they Knew who He was. And a good portion of them were like “Yes, we know who Jesus is” , “He is the son of God”. But as I was told some muslim kids would say this. We found out a little later that some of the kids were muslim, the majority were and there were a few who were christians. The kids told us they had seen the Jesus film, and that they saw Jesus nailed on the cross…so we talked about what that meant. And then later Tryphond translated some bible stories for me, which was cool. The kids were really listening and the answered our questions afterwards.As they did went on we had almost 20 kids!
(You can’t tell in this pic..I have yet to find the bigger group pic….when I do I will post it)
this is a clapping game
At the end we played games with the kids…and this was cool. It was just so great to hear the kids laughing and playing and to be playing with them.At the end of that day some of the kids told us they had school and had to go, but we invited them to come back the following day for more stories and better games! They seemed excited as they left.
The next day, I spoke for a minute or so at the conference then headed outside. This day we did not have ne 1 translating the whole time so , I was bummed at first thinking…what am I suppose to do, but, once I got out there Iris had them gathered playing games. And so what did we do….we played games..they sang us a song.. we made them laugh… we hugged them… we loved those kids. There was even a point where I was just sitting with them…smiling….they would sat on my lap or next to me..little did they know I was praying for them too, that they would know Jesus. That they would know His love and seek Him. I prayed for their protection and their families…
I do believe that despite language barriers that seeds were planted. We shared with them about jesus the first day they heard the truth and I hope and pray that they shared with there other friends and that they seek the Lord as they grow up.
This is one of my experiences there and I must say that playing, sharing, laughing, loving those kids I felt so incredibly full of peace, knew and felt joy and so felt the lord just there playing, singing laughing and loving along with us.
there are 2 other things about those gatherings outside the conference that I will have to post on later…I think I have typed enough for now!!