Monday Musings – 11/04/11
I spent the last three days in Karuthi, a village nestled in the foothills of Mount Kenya. A total of thirty pastors and church leaders, mostly uneducated and without practical leadership training, gathered at Victory Chapel.
Victory Chapel was started by Dr. Dan Kiambi about five years ago because of a burden he had to bring the gospel to his place of birth. MJ and I first met Dan and his wife Charity at our church in Montreal. They spent two years at Evangel while Dan taught and did research, before being invited back to Nairobi, to use his gifting in agricultural research. Now, years later, Dan asked if I would come to Karuthi and participate in a leadership conference along with some pastors from the CITAM churches based out of Nairobi.
MJ and I had just left our global workers’ retreat in Malindi, Kenya where we stayed in a beautiful room overlooking the Indian Ocean. In sharp contrast, I found myself leaving Nairobi and heading toward the beautiful but mostly impoverished foothills of Mount Kenya.
In full transparency, I must admit on the first day I found myself asking, what am I doing here? What impact could I possibly have in such a village? To my shame, it even crossed my mind that surely my experience could be better used elsewhere.
As always, it never takes long for me to see how God uses people to teach me far more than what I can teach them. I saw humility and a hunger to learn in the people that God had given me opportunity to teach. Further, I began to get a sense of the privilege that was mine to invest in people who have been neglected in practical leadership training because of where they live. I was further humbled by the fact that the teaching team included pastors from Nairobi who pastor churches of thousands but were willing to spend a day of their lives pouring into people who deserve training as much as anyone else.
It never ceases to amaze me how God uses days like I just experienced to speak into my life. On the last day, the final speaker spoke on brokenness. He reminded us that if we truly understood the greatness of God, we would walk in a place of brokenness. I paced the floor in prayer, at the back of that wood clad church with a corrugated steel roof, and asked God’s forgiveness for any pride that may have crept into my life and ministry. As the speaker asked me to close in prayer, I found myself praying, “Lord, whatever it takes for my will to break, do what you need to do”. Those are scary words prayed in the foothills of Mount Kenya and have continued to play in my mind in the days following the conference.
Talk about humility, I had the privilege of staying in the home of Dan Kiambi’s mother over the three days in Karuthi. Upon leaving she told me that she had a gift for me, at which point, she presented me with a live chicken that looked just like the chicken on the box of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes. We tied his legs, brought him back to Nairobi and had Kellogg’s Corn Flakes for lunch on Sunday. Dan reminded me that in African culture, when one gives the gift of a chicken or goat, it is a sign of honour. Wow! Humble me some more Lord!!!!
Until next Monday…
Taking risks for Kingdom impact!