After the VERY poor dinner last night the comped breakfast we had this morning was a feast that we should have had last night. Two kinds of sausages, chunked of deep fried potatoes, steamed veggies, baked beans, chunks of seasoned chicken, bacon, made to order omelets, 4 kinds of juice (one of which was Avocado!!!!!), toast, fruit, 3 kinds of dry cereal and hot drinks. Yes, it was a feast.
Pastor Edward arrived and we were off to our third prison in Eldorate, a men’s farm prison. When we asked for a few of the inmates to say what it meant for us to be there one inmate shared, “I had a tractor and property and a mob came and shot me in the leg with arrows and did so much damage to my leg that I spent some time in the hospital. When I came out of the hospital, they had taken my land and tractor and had me sent here. Since I have been here, I have been planning to take revenge on them when I get out and my attorney said I should make them compensate me for what they took. However, today I received Jesus as my Savior and I have spoken forgiveness over them. I want nothing from them and I will not take revenge on them.”
We loaded up and drove toward Eldorate, Edward in his van and us in our van. Just a few blocks from a gas station on the edge of town our van started overheating. If you have been following this blog, you already know that this trip we have had trouble after trouble with our vehicles. Never on any trip have we had so many issues and never before have we seen such provision and care from the Lord over us. In all the miles we have traveled, not once, have we been stranded out in the middle of nowhere. Every time it has been close to where we could get help AND help was always available.
Thank you Jesus for taking such good care of us!
But I must admit, today was difficult for me. Those of you who know me personally will understand what I am about to write and for the rest of you I hope you get a glimpse of my heart.
It was decided that Alfred would stay with our van and try to get it fixed while Aaron, who speaks Swahili fluently, would go with me in Edwards van to the men’s prison 20 minutes’ drive away. Never before in 141 entrances into 68 different prison facilities have I ever gone into a men’s prison without Alfred. Alfred is not only my Vice-President and Coordinator, who translates for me and watches out for me, he is my trusted son who is always looking out for me that I am safe. Watching his face as we drove away knowing I was going into that men’s prison without him was TOUGH and that word does not even fit.
But Jesus, my protector, was with me and he taught me long ago that I never have to be afraid to do what I know he has called me to do, He has promised to go before me and behind me. He also provided Pastor Aaron and tall Chaplin Edward to fill in, of sorts, for Alfred.
We arrived quickly at the prison and entered into a large field where 500+ prisoners were gathered. Over to one side were some buildings that were built by the Colonial Masters and at times now are still used for overflow prisoners today.
I noticed the rain clouds overhead and prayed that the lord would hold back the rain. But shortly after I began to speak it started to sprinkle so out loud I prayed again asking Jesus to hold back the rain but it did not stop.
They began directing the prisoners and us into a nearby building were we could all fit. As we walked toward the building, I told Aaron and Edward to pray for me, as I knew the Holy Spirit wanted me to talk about what just happened when I prayed or should I say did not happen when I prayed but I was not sure what.
The space was cramped but adequate when everyone got inside and the Holy Spirit gave me an on the spot message about the ways God answers prayers and trusting God when we don’t get what we ask for or when God “seems” silent. I ended with a testimony from one of the inmates this morning who said that when God did not answer his prayer to be set free at trial with a yes, he decided to not serve God again. Nevertheless today changed many things for him.
Then I proceeded with a regular crusade where so very many received Christ and prayed the prayer of forgiveness. One prisoner gave a testimony that brought me to tears as he admitted to the other prisoners that he had had quarrels and arguments with many of the other inmates and today he was asking them to forgive him. Everyone responded with applause and as he handed me the mic I put my arms around him and gave him a huge hug, then the room erupted in applause and cheers. What a moment!!!!!
|Asking forgiveness from his peers|
We drove back to Eldorate to find corrections had been made in the cooling system and Alfred had found us a place to stay. The Commandant of Prisons, Moses (whom I met last year), came and had dinner with us and we had a brief meeting. He also stayed the night here.
I guess that wraps up the day and it is 11pm here. Time for me to shower and go to bed. Tomorrow I go to our fifth prison in Kenya.
Keep praying, your prayers are being answered and with a yes!!
That none would be lost,