Teleios Ministry

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Showers of Blessing in an Dry Land

I’ve seen Him in the Lightening and heard Him in the thunder and felt Him in the Rain, My God is near me all the time.  My God is near me all the time.

Today was a very special day.   We traveled to Bernard and Mary’s property in Lamuri about 45 minutes from Nyeri.   Bernard shared with Bill, Kip, and Garry his vision for the property—a center for transformation: Leadership Development, a Secondary School, a Retreat Center, a center for agri-business training and development, and horticulture area of fruit and native trees.  We were truly blessed.   The area is a semi-arid plateau that sits between Mt. Kenya in the east and the Aberdare Mountains in the west.   The property has an approximate elevation of 6600 feet.    When we arrived it was dry.   To go ahead and get this over with.  Bernard asked me, "Is that your hat?"  I said, "well it's mine on the trip, but it's Bonnie's hat."  He said, "Well I thought it looked like the one she wears."   So that is the reason for the strange hat that I am wearing.   

On the property are sheep, goats, chickens, and a dairy cow.   Fruit trees have been planted.   The property has been fenced.   A small home for a care taker and a wooden/tin sheet barn for the animals.  Currently the property is a little over 16 acres divided into two equal plots.  

After Bernard shared his vision and we walked the property, Duncan, Stephen, Robert, and the Caretaker were busy BBQing a half of a goat.   The BBQ goat was mighty tasty.  We also had chapatti, greens, a salad of onions & tomatoes chopped up together.   We had chai, coffee, and water to drink.  

While we were on the property, a three donkey cart came by loaded with fresh milk containers.  They were headed to town to sell the milk.  Dairy products are a big agricultural product in this area.  

After lunch, we talked about how God had worked bringing us together.   Bernard is excited to have begun his dream of a transgenerational formation center.   We all shared the impact of the trip and the journey that brought us together.  

I reminded the group.  On this day on that property as we were together, we could with confidence know that God had brought us together.   We knew today that we were right were God wanted us to be.   With confidence we could say that we were in the middle of God’s will for us.   This was a great moment for all of us and one that we would not forget.  

As I mentioned earlier, this is a semi-arid area.  The rains ended over two months ago.  Now, the ground was dusty, the grass was brown, and trees, shrubs, and even the animals showed the effects of a lack of water.   Now is not the season for rain but the beginning a dry time.   Within an couple of hours the wind was blowing and in the distance we saw rain clouds.  As we were finishing up, God blessed us with rain.   In this area rain is always greeted with “Praise God”.  God blessed us today in an unbelievable way by sending the rain.   I believe that He sent it to us just to confirm that this was His place and He is going to prosper the vision.   Words are inadequate to describe the feeling, emotion, and Spirit that was in the tent as the rain fell at the end of the day.   

At the bottom of Today's blog is a picture of Thika Falls taken by Bill Kenny on his first morning in Kenya.   

You can see the rain running off the tent.
God's Blessings showering on us.

Monday, September 01, 2014

A Great Day meeting Outstanding People

 Today, we started with our usual breakfast and a lot of laughing.   This was a great day of visiting.

Our first visit was the Deputy Governor, Nyeri County.   George (who was in the business seminar) took us to meet with the Honorable Amb. Samuel W. Githaiga.  The first thing that the Deputy Governor said, “Let us begin with prayer.”   Bernard prayed and then introduced himself and the Amb. Githaiga told us about himself.    He has had a long career of public service including serving with the Kenya Embassy in Canada and with the United Nations.   He shared with us in great detail the challenges and opportunities of business and community development needs in Nyeri County.  Each one of us introduced ourselves sharing our commitment to assist Bernard with his vision 

that includes items related to the specific needs of Nyeri County.   Kip presented the Deputy Governor with a gift and we had the usual photos.   We were all very impressed with the work of Nyeri County leaders and the Amb. Githaiaga. 

I, Floyd, have been visiting Nyeri County since 2004.   In the last two years there has been a tremendous change with better roads, economic development, and in the growth of the city.   The Governor of Nyeri County has done a great job along with his team.  

After we left the Deputy Governor’s office we headed to see James.   James is the owner of the Paradise Café.   James participated in the Business Conference on Friday and Saturday.   The café was not big with only about 10 tables.  But the whole time that we were there customers were in and out, the staff was making deliveries to local businesses, and a lot of carry out business.   James treated us to our lunch and it was all great.   If you are in Nyeri, ask for James’ Paradise Café.   We met his wife and then rode to see his home and meet his children.   This was a special time.   James thanked us for coming to his café.   He said that our being there was a big boost to business.  If we would eat at his café, then, it must be safe food to eat and good food.    Just our being there was a real blessing to him in the growth of his business.   There were scripture verses painted all around the café’.   When we reached James’ home, inside his home was painted his theme verse: Whatever you find do, do it all to the glory of God.  

James is a unique man.  He has helped those who worked with him and he trained to start their own cafés.   He has three children and his brother’s son also lives with them.   We prayed with James and continued to talk with him.  

After leaving James, we headed to see Margaret.  She runs a hair salon, clothes and beauty products shop, and also an mpesa business.    We had a great time with her meeting her daughter and praying for the business.   Margaret had some very nice purses and soon they were purchased by some of us.  We walked around the downtown area.

The last stop was the Nyeri Baptist Church on the edge of a Nyeri slum area.   Pastor Peter was aware but his lovely wife was there.  Also, Aaron from the business conference was there—he serves as an Associate Pastor.   We walked down into the slums.  They have changed a great deal since I last saw about four years ago.   Nyeri County has brought electricity, water, and street lights (more like area lights).   This has led to the development of a safer and more permanent community.  Elisabeth explained the church’s outreach into the area and the community.   She also provided us with tea.

We then returned to the Westwood but only briefly.  We made reservations at the Outspan Hotel (the top hotel in Nyeri) for dinner.   Pictures that you will see.   The Outspan faces Mt. Kenya.   As we looked, we saw the peak of Mt. Kenya.   The picture is not the best but you can see the peak with it’s snow.  Once again, we enjoy a great meal there with lot’s of laughing.   We learned this was a first time experience for Robert.  He did real well with all the knives and forks; also, the courses that came (in his eyes) one right after the other.   

Tomorrow we head to the Bernard’s new property where we will have Nyoma Choma (goat cooked over fire with chapatti.    This will be a new experience for most of the group.  


 Sunday we traveled to Bernard’s mother’s home and worshipped at their home church.  Bernard’s mom prepared her “world” famous chicken, mukimo, greens, and chapatti!
Garry, Bill, and Kip brought greetings from their families, encouragement to the church, and shared their walk with Jesus.    Floyd (translated by Robert) preached.   We all had a very meaningful time of worshipping with Bernard’s home church.   Afterwards, we spent the afternoon with Bernard’s mom and family.   Of course the meal was great—I, Floyd, ate way to much but it is so good.   Bernard took the group on a walk showing us the different crops on the farm (shamba)—avocado, bananas, and coffee.  He took to the time to educate us on coffee production. 

As a note, the night before it had rained and we had a slippery, sliding ride to the homeland.   Duncan, our driver, did a great job.   We returned to the Westwood to relax and talk.   Most called or contacted family in the States.  A few alterations were made to our schedule.  

The trip has included a great opportunity of building friendship and partnership.   Every night is filled with a lot of laughter and being together.   I (Floyd) was shocked though that Bill Kenny threw me under the business at dinner.  The hotel’s restaurant manager, Grace, is a lovely person.  But, early on she asked Bill and others why they did not “clean” their plates.  Did they not like the food?   This has become a joke.  It seemed that the person sitting in one particular chair always caught Grace’s inquisition on what was not eaten.   Tonight, I sat in “THE CHAIR”.  Grace was not in the restaurant when we ate.   We were finished when Grace arrived.   She asked how the food was, did we enjoy it, and basically did everyone try all of the food.   Bill says, “Floyd did not try the soup.  He did not even get a bowl.”   Immediately this caused Grace to turn attention to me.   I tell you, I could feel the wheels of the bus as they bumped over me.   

Dream Becomes A Reality in Business

Business Group

Garry Freeman, Bill Kenny, Kip Miller and Floyd Parker through Teleios Ministry partnered with Bernard Kabaru Mwangi with Robert Godfrey to bring together business owners who follow Jesus Christ for a two day conference at the Westwood Hotel, Nyeri.    This has been a long time dream of Bernard’s and together the dream became a reality for all those who came together August 29-30.  

All of us arrived in Kenya with no problems over a couple of day.   When Bill and Kip arrived we headed for the Blue Post Hotel, Thika, for a quick nights rest.
Nairobi at Night
Then, Friday, early in the morning we headed to Nyeri to start the conference.   This was Kip’s second time in Kenya teaching on Biblical principles in business.   For Bill this was his first time to Kenya and his first time to share in how his faith in Christ guides his business.   Garry has been in involved over the years through Teleios Ministry in partnership with Bernard and Mary Kabaru in developing businesses.  

Nairobi at Night heading to the Airport
The conference provided practical business teaching based on the specific needs of those gathered, encouragement through Scripture on business as a calling and gift from God, and perspective on the teaching of Scripture on business.   Each participant shared about themselves and their businesses including the challenges and opportunities that they faced.    Paul operates bottled gas and banking agent business. Mary operates a nursery/primary school. Margaret leads a hair salon, a beauty products business, and a clothing store.  James has a café and catering business.  Sampson operates bookshops.  George was the most diversified with farming, a Safaricom shop, electronics shops, and other businesses.   Aaron is a pastor and George’s son and operates business. 

The group was very active in questions and in responding to each other’s challenges, opportunities, and successful practices.   As the two conference ended, Kabaru asked, “What insights or new ideas came from the conference?”   I (Floyd) watched a 3ft x 6ft white board fill up.   Many shared the same insights but each business person seemed to have a unique insight that they were taking away.   Also, we spent time taking about the “Way Forward”.    They Kenyan business persons set a date for a follow gathering.   They are developing networks for coming together as business owners for accountability, innovation, and addressing the challenges of business.   Targeted seminars will be developed to address specific needs.   The use of mentoring relationships to develop other business owners and business persons in their pursuit of following Jesus in business was a conscientious of the group.  On Friday afternoon we took a walking tour of the business district of Nyeri--great exercise in learning about the realities of Kenyan small business.