African Trip Journal: Part Nine

The Saturday I left Kenya, I had the chance to attend a wedding @ the church. Nice! Quite similar to American weddings but with more singing and greater involvement by the parents. We signed a card as a group and gave them a cash gift.

One of the things we prayed fervently for is unity of the team. I could not have been happier on that count. God truly grew an affection in us for one another and we worked so well as a team, each using their gifts and loving God and one another.

It is my hope & prayer that we can continue the frienships we've developed. I love them all.

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Scripture from service at Milton's church--Acts 13:23-35

On poverty...

I have seen extreme poverty unlike any I've encountered even in my work with the homeless in Chicago. It's hard to fully grasp it, both on an invidual level (i.e., How does one survive/go on in such a state?) and on a societal level (i.e., How can such deep poverty be so widespread?). It is more difficult for me in a place like the slums--South B, Kibera, etc. The people there know that ther are those with wealth & comfortable lives nearby. The Pokot, except for a small number, presumably don't know much better. They are not living in such proximity to other people & their filth either. I wonder if the poor moms avoid attaching themselves too closely to their babies due to the high mortality rate. I will be processing this for some time to come.


Acts 20:34-34...a new perspective. Not only is it "better to give than receive," but we should work extra hard so that we may give well. Hmm...

On pastoring...

I was greatly encouraged by my experience preaching @ City Harvest. God really gave me the words to talk about confession & reconciliation. Because City Harvest didn't didn't know my title, my name appeared in the bulletin as "Pastor Nate Coleson." Pastor Nate...time was when I told God I wasn't going to be a pastor, so He shouldn't bother asking. Now I am open to it. I don't know that I am called to that but am beginning to wonder. One African, when I told him that was my first time preaching, said, "You cannot convince me." I love the Kenyan turn of phrase. I'm surely not worthy of this on my own, nor does my flesh desire it, but if God wills it, I will obey.

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Enjoying a pineapple Miranda soda @ the Uganda Christian University canteen. 700 shillings. A chicken is wondering through; no one pays it any mind.

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The beautiful flat-top trees in Africa are Acacia trees. I think I knew that.

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We got a taste of Nairobi violence on our first day there. Very distressing. It appeared to have been a fender-bender gone bad, but the mob mentality quickly ignited. I saw at least one man hit in the head, possibly w/ a tire iron. Not sure if he survived. Nothing we could do but pray...

9-24-2008 - Victoria Station, London

Well, I had Ugandan breakfast in Mukono and am now having dinner in London. Crazy. I'm beat. I've been walking all around the city. Many things aren't open in the evening, but I saw the Thames, Big Ben & the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, Westminster Cathedral & the Eye. I've also ridden the Tube. All in all, London is much like I expected, thought I'm disappointed it's dark & I'm so tired. I have to say that people in Africa are the walkingest people I've seen, but Londoners walk fast. I'd hoped to get fish & chips and even found a pub close, but their kitchen was closed--drinks only. So, I'm @ the food court @ Victoria Station having a Beck's NA & a goat cheese veggie burger. The waitress is east Asian. Oh well. I need to bring the fam back to the UK (& Africa) anyway.

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Now I'm @ Heathrow. Couldn't get a Yotel booking and don't really want to spend the money anyway. Thankfully, there's a little coffee shop open 24/7. Just killing time until my flight.

It seems that I've run out of journal before I've run out of thoughts, so look for a continuation of my travelogue on the back of my itinerary and other odd bits of paper. [Verbatim from my little Moleskine journal. More to come...]

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