We had an awesome weekend in the Mombasa area! We all loaded up and headed to Miritini on Friday to stay in a hotel until Sunday while we visited two of our churches and one preaching point. We got our hotel rooms and grabed some lunch at a little crack in the wall on our way to Bokole where we were scheduled to show the first night of cinemas. We could see where it had rained recently and that it looked like rain at any moment but we pushed on into Bokole.
When we got to Bokole we left the van at the top of the hill at the school and the guys got out and walked in while the ladies jumped into the Land Rover to drive in. We got stuck a little almost immediately as we descended into the valley but managed to get it out. At that point all the ladies abandoned ship and Kenya and I were left in the Land Rover. We took it easy and made our way on deep into Bokole.
Our biggest question mark was at a little stream crossing at the bottom of the hill. Well it is not really a stream it is more a ditch. Specifically a ditch that runs all the way up to the slaughter house in Kasameni where the blood and nastiness is dumped into it and it runs down the stream into the river when it rains. So it is a nasty cesspool. There was no water on top but the ground was still soft. I gunned it and made it across no problem, then up the hill to the church.
We immediately set up the Jesus film equipment and started playing music while the ladies went to work fixing some lunch. We had a good time greeting everyone, visiting, and playing with the kids. Clayton and I did a little maintenance on the Land Rover while we were at it. All day we had noticed that the clutch was not working right and was even beginning to cause some concern, so we checked the clutch fluid level and sure enough it was almost empty. We also noticed a significant diesel leak that took precedence over the clutch fluid. We finally found that the source of the leak was a small opening on the bottom the fuel pump so Clayton widdled a small stick and we wedged it in to the hole to stop the leak until the morning when we took it into the shop. With the diesel leak stopped I hopped on a motor cycle and ran to town and picked up some clutch fluid so we could fill it up. I got back before time to show the cinema, we filled up the clutch fluid and we were good to go again. It did not appear we had a leak or anything.
The cinema went well although to begin with there were not a lot of people but by the time it was over we had a good 150 or so watching the movie. We paused the move towards the end and gave a gospel presentation so everyone heard the gospel and we invited them to the services at the church. Once the cinema concluded we packed it all up and headed for the hotel. That is when it got interesting....At the little stream I spoke of earlier where I gunned it and we made it across, well half way across the front of the Land Rover sank about a foot in mud up to the axle so needless to say we were stuck. This was our first time to get stuck, little did we know but we would get stuck another three or four times before the two and a half hour mud fest would end.
We had to get stones to put under the Jack to jack up the Land Rover then place stones under the tire to get the Land Rover up so we could move it. The weight of the LR would push the stones deeper into the mud so we would jack it up again and add stones. We stuffed grass, palm branches, and mango tree branches anything we could to get some traction. We got it unstuck once and backed it up out of the mud and tried to run at it again from another angle managing to get the front tires on solid ground but burying the back. At least we had some progress. Clayton and I had talked earlier in the night about a winch and even playing in the mud and we found ourselves knee deep and"playing" in the mud. We continued to jack, position rocks, push, dig, and pray until finally we made it out. Once I cleared the stream bed I did not stop or look back until I reached high ground.
John, Clayton, and I were covered in mud by the time the night was over. We had a lot of help from Juma's family and pastor Fred. Everyone was tired by the time we finished. Clayton said that he was talking to Fred the pastor at Bokole and he said that this was, "the cost of Evangelism." What an awesome perspective! It was true we spent a few hours in a mud pit for the opportunity to preach Jesus. Fred made our night with his words.
Saturday we went into Mombasa to have the Land Rover worked on a little and to do some shopping while we waited. We got the widdled stick replaced with a screw and the shock bushing replaced with high density bushings and we were back in action. We went by and picked up Elly and Cedar to head into Midiani for an evengelistic out reach. This was our first time to go to Midiani. Elly has been working with Cedar for a few months now and was teaching in Midiani.
Elly goes to Midiani every Thursday to teach. That sounds easy and like no big deal but Elly usually walks in for two hours on his crutches to preach. Last month Elly took Fred, the pastor from Bokole, with him to Midiani and even Fred was amazed at the distance Elly traveled to preach. Elly has shown Fred "the cost of Evangelism" so it makes Fred's comment that much more powerful to know where he has learned it from. Those who are meeting in Midiani have been doing the Zaeni Matunda book that we use when starting a work. When they complete the book we give them a nice Bible with a zipper cover. We tell them and show them that we want them to have a Bible to read and to confirm we are teaching them the truth. Part of our visit was to present Bibles to those who had completed their books. We only had 15 to give out but we will bring the rest when we come the end of the month with Eyes on Christ.
Once we picked up Elly and Cedar we drove interior to Midiani through a few areas that were questionable for the van to pass but it made it. We only had to push it once. Once we got to where the folks have been meeting at we went straight to work with setting up speakers and the cinema then greeted everyone. The young people at Midiani have an acrobat team and they put on a five minute show for us that was awesome! We presented the Bibles, sang a little, and I preached before we started the cinema. Elly had everything all planned out and it flowed so well. After the preaching we all ate a meal together and continued to eat even once the cinema started.
It was obvious to us that the folks in Midiani had not seen the Jesus film before. Everyone sat so still including all the children. The only talking we heard was about the cinema. We paused the cinema as we usually do at the crucifixion and Elly gave a presentation of the Gospel and invitation to be saved. There were four people that got saved! After the Gospel presentation we finished the cinema then packed everything up. We had a great night in Midiani and we are looking forward to returning the end of the month with the Eyes on Christ team.
Sunday we all loaded up and went to Elly's church, Mnara wa Kweli Landmark Baptist Church. Elly had planned the cinema to be part of the worship service. So we had singing and regular worship followed by John preaching before the cinema. There were a couple of visitors that raised their hand for salvation that Elly said he would followup with. After the preaching we watched the cinema to finish out the service. It was super hot but we made it through! After the cinema the church had prepared a meal so we ate and had fellowship together before heading back towards Malindi. It was a great day and an awesome weekend.
On the way home we passed by the Mall to enjoy some A/C and grab a bite to eat. We all had a little ice cream to celebrate the weekend.
This week has been good and busy. We had to make another trip to Mombasa to do few things which pretty much eats an entire day. We also had a big Zoom meeting (Internet conference meeting) on Tuesday evening with Aaron Johnson, Darren Clements, and Ryan Copico to talk about a survey trip to the North in May. We are planning a big fact finding trip north to make plans for reaching the unreached people groups there. Please pray for the Orma, Warde, and Pokomo that are all north of us and especially for this trip in May. We talked about the purpose and plan of the trip of the trip. I think we all walked away super excited and pumped for the trip. This trip and several subsequent trips that will follow are esential as we put together a ministry strategy for preaching to the unreached and in areas that are not as stable as where we are. North of Malindi is primarily Islamic country with Somolia being the major influence on the people in the area. We need God's wisdom and direction as we move forward. This May trip is some ground work for the future.
The rest of this week has been a lot of administrative work as well as work on government documents for the Straders and Howells. I have been on the phone a lot confirming the weekend appointments and working on the Eyes on Christ campaign the end of this month. We finished out the week with getting equipment all together for the weekend and we are getting ready to go out for another big weekend with four locations.
Kenya managed to squeeze in some gingerbread house making one day that was a big hit!