Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Yesu ni Bwana!

-July 8, Wednesday
Kisumu, Kenya-

Today we got up and went to do our morning devotions and have breakfast. Cheryl led the devotion, and Christian and I sang a few songs. Breakfast was good- mandazi, eggs, bacon, corn flakes, papaya juice, and toast.

We headed through the worst of the slums, on our way to Ring Road School. There were so many unschooled children out on the streets, watching us. These are children who need an education, a future. It truly breaks my heart.

The students were all waiting, cheering for us again when we arrived. Everywhere I go, the children call, "Lavin, Lavin," because they know that I am Lavin's sponsor.

When Lavin saw me this morning, her face lit up and she ran to embrace me. I gave her a Bible that I brought from home, and the school leaders were so excited for her that they had us pose for a picture. Lavin is the sweetest, most beautiful and intelligent little girl I have ever met. She is so humble and precious. I love her so much.

Barbie and I set up our things and created a little picture studio. Barbie had the names and identity numbers of the children, and I would photograph each child and give Barbie the number of the photo so that she could ID the child from the picture later on. In a way, it reminded me of working with Steve back at home.

The children were often too shy to smile, so I would say, "Cheka, cheka," which technically translates into, "Laugh, laugh," until they smiled and showed their teeth.

We picked four girls to help us find the children around the school- Rose (Rosie), Dorine (Dory), Judith (Moja), and Judith (Mbili). Olivia and I came up with nicknames for all of them. The girls were so helpful. The sun was very bright and hot, so they fetched us a bamboo mat and held it over our heads to give us shade. They brought us chairs and tables, and they would hold our bags so that they would not become dusty on the dirt ground.

We had a few children write letters to their sponsors. A few even drew pictures. It was fun to give them ideas of what to write.

Barbie passed out letters from the children's sponsors, and I got to see Lavin open the two letters she received from me. The many, many children who did not get letters swarmed her, ooh-ing and ahh-ing over everything in the envelope. Sponsors need to write more letters to these children. They treasure every word. They read their letters over and over again. It makes their week.

The children all surrounded Olivia and I, chanting, "Sing, sing!"

"Sing what?" we asked.

"Anything. Teach us any song," they eagerly replied.

So we began to sing. I made up a song and Dory and Rose helped me translate a verse into Swahili. It goes:

"Jesus loves me, Jesus loves you
Jesus loves me, Jesus loves you
Jesus loves me, Jesus loves you
Jesus loves me, Jesus loves you

Hallelujah, ha-ha-ha, Jesus loves me
Hallelujah, ha-ha-ha, Jesus loves you
Hallelujah, ha-ha-ha, Jesus loves me
Hallelujah, ha-ha-ha, Jesus loves you

Yesu ni Bwana, Yesu ni Bwana
Yesu ni, Bwana, Yesu ni Bwana
Yesu ni Bwana, Yesu ni Bwana
Yesu ni Bwana, Yesu ni Bwana

Hallelujah, ha-ha-ha, Yesu ni Bwana
Hallelujah, ha-ha-ha, Yesu ni Bwana
Hallelujah, ha-ha-ha, Yesu ni Bwana
Hallelujah, ha-ha-ha, Yesu ni Bwana."

The children love pretty much any song that has motions, so I taught them another Child Evangelism Fellowship song:

"When Satan tries to get you down,
Turn your eyes to Jesus.
Put on a smile, take away your frown.
Turn your eyes to Jesus.
Turn your eyes to Jesus, He'll see you through.
Turn your eyes to Jesus, He cares for you."

We also taught them Amazing Grace, This Little Light of Mine, and we sang songs that they already knew, at least partially, such as Jesus Loves the Little Children, Jesus Loves Me, Trading My Sorrows, Shut the Door- Keep Out the Devil, and If You're Happy and You Know It. These children love to sing. By this time, Barbie had joined in, and we had the children form a circle, and we taught them the Hokey Pokey. It was pretty hilarious.

Olivia and I tried to teach the children how to play Duck, Duck, Goose, but no one really got it, not even the older ones. Simon Says was a big hit, however.

We had egg, ugali, rice, greens, and beef/goat for lunch. I am drinking several cold cokes a day, because there is literally no water, and we get so thirsty. The bathrooms are astonishingly unsanitary, with much cha on the floor, so we have all learned how to hold our bladders for eight, nine, ten hours a day. Otherwise, we have to pop a squat in the middle of a cha-covered choo.

I got out my guitar and Chase and I began to teach the children to sing some more songs. Chase was the hand-motions guy. We taught them a silly, interactive version of the Happy Song:

"I could sing unending songs of how You saved my soul... yeehaw!
And I could dance a thousand miles because of your great love... yeehaw!
My heart is bursting, Lord... clap, clap!
To tell of all You've done... clap, clap!
Of how You changed my life and wiped away the past.
I want to shout it out... hey!
From every rooftop sing,
For now I know that God is for me, not against me!"

They loved that song. We also sang Every Move I Make, Trading My Sorrows, and Nothing but the Blood. Chase had them all scream at the top of their lungs, dance crazily, and make the hand motions for "peace out."

Dory stood up and told the story of a poor man whose humbleness and skills in farming gave hope to everyone, even the foolish rich, proving that you cannot judge a book by its cover. Dory is an exceptionally good storyteller.

We boarded our matatus and got stuck on one of the terrible roads in the slums. While trying to get out, I was watching the people around us. One girl just dropped her skirt, squatted down, and pooped right there on the ground, in the middle of everything and everyone.

We arrived at the hotel and ate beef/goat, rice, chicken, and bread for dinner. I got to chat with my mom and dad on Facebook, and then I talked to Luke and both of my parents on the phone.

No comments:

Post a Comment