Retreats are over and second term of school is quickly passing by, and with it the first half of the year! It’s another season for us to visit our students and their homes, and opportunity to follow up on them and their life back home. We had the privilege of having a pastor intern with us these past few months. Pastor Japheth has been a blessing since he joined us, and we were excited to have him join the group as we traveled in and out of town.
Our first stop was to see Valentine, one of my boys. A humble and honest young man who loves Jesus and woks hard in school. He had persevered through a lot, even with some outstanding tuition bills, dating back to his time before he joined the Ndoto family. We met the principal and shared our concerns and desires for Valentine as he thanked us for supporting Valentine through his education and personal wellbeing. We had some time with Valentine just before lunch break, as Pastor Japheth shared with him about God’s love for him and his future. We took pictures with him, and just before we left he spoke to us and thanked us for coming to see him as we hugged him and prayed with him. That was humbling for me, to see such a young man openly appreciate our visit.
Our second stop was on the other side of western Kenya. It was another special opportunity to share a unique moment in our childrens’ lives. It was prize giving day at the school, and with most of our parents unable to make the trip, we planned to make it ourselves together as staff (Joshua, Pastor Japheth, and I).
We made it to the venue just after noon to a lovely line up of scouts at the entrance ushering the parents as they all made it to the morning service. We took our sitting positions and followed along as the songs of jubilation and thanksgiving filled the air. A group of young boys made their way to the front dancing majestically, and there he was! Our Lawi was second in line, all dressed up and enjoying himself. I quickly grabbed the camera to get some snap shots of him. Barely a term into his new school, and he is not only improving in his overall class work but getting involved in service at the church! I was so humbled and proud of him. Having experienced so many trials before, he just never gives up. He has grown so much in the one year I have known him, and that was one proud moment for me and Joshua!
I kept the camera so close to me, that way I was certain of getting more pictures of Lawi and David. Surely enough I made my way to the scouts marching in and out of the venue as they welcomed the visitors in. David, who we call “Pastor”, has been part of the scouting fraternity through most of his primary school life, and seeing him firmly marching with the rest was a fantastic scene. Pastor has been instrumental in taking care of Lawi in the new environment and helping him feel at home knowing an Ndoto brother is watching his back. We spent time with the two boys after the event as they ate and enjoyed hearing from Pastor Japheth.
We took pictures together with them and prayed over them. “Thank you for coming!” those sweet words came from both boys as we finished praying. Wow! That was it, that was the moment I realized how much these boys have grown. They understand how important it is to appreciate the things they have in life, but also to see what we do and remember to show gratitude! That was the most gratifying moment of my time at Ndoto. Watching how these boys have grown, and seeing how much it means to them when they see us, is amazing. Thank you Lord for working behind the scenes!