Teleios Ministry

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Teaching Time...Teleios/Grace Africa 2007

Day 6 Opens Door For Discussion

Kevin led the discussion during his teaching session.

Matt taught "Biblical Leadership" which helped open the Pastors Conference on a high note.

Thursday was a teaching day for Matt and Kevin. They both did an excellent job and had a great deal of discussion. Matt did learn that nothing interrupts “Tea Time.” Matt’s teaching on Biblical Leadership really opened the conference on a high level.

For lunch, we enjoyed a delicious meal of rice, fried cabbage with onions, and red beans—it was very good.

Kevin taught for over fours hours on Conflict Transformation. The pastors were hesitant at first to enter into discussion, but in the end, time just had to be closed with pastors still talking and asking questions.

Our day began at 7:30 a.m. with breakfast and ended with supper around 7:30 p.m. Tomorrow is another full day.

'Tea Time' is a must and offers an opportunity to get to know each other.

The church in Nyeri.


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The Winding Road...Teleios/Grace Africa 2007

Day 5 Reveals Two Sides To Beauty

The road through the Maranga District wound up and down, twisting through the hills and mountains.

On Wednesday, we made the grand tour of the Maranga District churches – a truly grueling day of riding on seemingly impossible roads. Most of the roads were rock and red clay, up and down, hills and mountains, all on twisting roads.

Despite the rough road, the landscape was beautiful with tea farms everywhere and lush green hills. All the beauty, though, was covering a hard life of subsistence living. The tea pickers, who work by hand on very steep slopes, earn about $1.10 a day for a full eight-hour day.

We also learned that only 30 percent of the pastors in this District receive any salary or type of compensation for their work. All of them must have another source of income – yet, they are full time.

Needless to say, we were worn out by the time evening rolled around. Thank you for your continued prayers.

A walk through a slum in Nyeri was an eye-opener.


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Long Road...Teleios/Grace Africa '07

Day 4 …And We're Off Again

Tuesday, the journey takes us to Nyeri to meet Peter Wanjohi, pastor of the Nyeri Baptist Church, and to see Bernard Kabaru’s homeplace and meet his mother.

The rollercoaster roads did not shake the sight of the slums that line the river of Nyeri - 15,000 people in wooden and rusting metal homes. Still, we were met with generally friendly faces. The Grace Team spent quite some time shaking the hands of kindergarten children as they cried out, “muthungu, muthungu!” which translates as “white persons, white persons.”

What a challenging but joyous day!

A child enjoying a refreshing cold drink.


Monday, May 28, 2007

Eyes Opened...Teleios/Grace Africa '07

Day 3 Visits Give Us Much To See

"We're Walking Through Ruaka..." Bernard Kabaru leads the Teleios/Grace Team as they discuss opportunities within the community.

Matt Williams lends a hand on a construction site in the Ruaka area.

Today, we waited again for the luggage. But, great news came early in the morning - our bags were off vacation in London and actually in Nairobi!

We walked Ruaka. With deep, dark red soil beneath our feet we walked through the family plots of corn, beans, collards, banana trees. The homes we visited were so welcoming. Everywhere we went, they wanted to know why Pastor Kabaru did not let them know we were coming. Chai or sodas would have been prepared for us. Most of the homes were 10 x 10 feet for a family of six. A virus has hit the community and is having a serious impact upon the children. Please pray for their health. The reality of why a medical clinic is needed was evident.

The vision of a transformation center began to take shape in our minds as we saw the complexity of issues and the simplicity of the reality of need.


Sunday, May 27, 2007

Food - Fellowship - Friends...Teleios/Grace Africa '07

Day 2 Filled With Presence Of God

Mike Collins delivers a message on "Christian Joy" to the congregation at Koinonia.

Matt awoke to SAUSAGE, and I mean, “Man, this is good sausage.” The delights of a breakfast at the Kentmere were really enjoyed.

After breakfast, we went to church at Koinonia. The worship with our Koinonia brothers and sisters in Christ was filled with the rhythms of dancing, movement, emotion, broad smiles, silence, praying, clapping, and an awesome presence of God.

I watched Kevin, Mitchell, Matt, and Mike as they joined the rhythm of Koinonia before God. Mike preached on Christian Joy with Duncan as his translator.

When the worship service ended, we met young men from Atlanta who were there as a part of God’s call to help the church address the issue of AIDS. Their story was an exciting one. We also met a young married couple from Rome, GA. They were returning to Georgia after an extended honeymoon serving others in Jesus name. (They were married in October and arrived in Kenya shortly after that in November.)

We sat with the Leadership Team of Koinonia and enjoyed Chai (hot tea and milk) with doughnut-like treats. Matt talked of “iced” tea and his new Kenya friends laughed.

During that meeting, God working out this trip became evident. Mostly Bernard and Matt shared with each other the stories of Koinonia (fellowship) and Grace. That time of tea was filled with the awesome awareness of God at work. Mitchell and Kevin will be guest musicians next Sunday for Koinonia’s second anniversary. The party hosted by the Spirit ended after almost six hours of worship, fellowship, and discovery.

We took a scenic ride through the Kenya Highlands to enjoy the Great Rift Valley. Tomorrow is another day. We pray the London vacation of our luggage ends.


Friday, May 25, 2007

Departures - Delays - Delights...Teleios/Grace Africa '07

Day 1 Is All Of The Above…

Our journey to Nairobi from Greenville was an exciting one. We were delayed out of the GSP airport for one hour with much of the time spent sitting on the runway waiting. Once in Newark, we had 45 minutes to get our boarding passes for British Airways and pass through Security again.

At the ticketing counter in Newark, I learned what a valuable asset Mitchell Poe is. His constant repeating of “You can upgrade us to Business” paid off with upgrades for all of us to Business class. That plane was delayed, too, so we made our flight after being escorted to the Security Check. We were finally off to London.

When we landed in London, we had 30 minutes to catch our next plane. Because we were flying Business class and going to Nairobi, we were able to bypass a long waiting line. Then, we ran from one end of Terminal 4 to the other. Kevin was stopped coming out of Security for additional screening. Mike waited to be his escort.

It was quite a sight to see Matt running through the terminal with his backpack on rollers going from side to side and Mitchell in hot pursuit. I was running behind them to make sure no one dropped anything. We just made it to the gate. Matt and Mitchell went ahead and boarded the plane so they could encourage them not to take off until the rest of us arrived.

Once at the boarding gate, Kevin, Mike, and I discovered that we had not been given the correct boarding passes in Newark. I had two boarding passes for Newark to London. So, we were bumped from Business to Economy. By now, gratitude for making the plane was all that mattered. God is good all the time. We were learning to say, “Hakuna Matata”—no problems, no worries.

When we arrived in Nairobi, we learned that our luggage did not run fast enough to catch the plane leaving London. Even as I write, we wait for the luggage. Friday to Monday in the same clothes—oh, the fresh smells being men in Africa. I know that our wives are really missing us now.