Thursday, December 18, 2014

An annoying leach...

It's 11 days before I board a plane and head back to the States.  11 days with a whole lot of living that needs to happen.  Right now, I find myself at Adonai Guesthouse.... an unexpected trip in and an opportunity for a few minutes of just overlooking the city.  I am going to miss this place.  The sounds, and the smells.... and for sure the people.  And I can't lie... I am, for sure, going to be missing the warm weather.   Right now, it's about 75 degrees with a slight breeze.  The sun is peering through a few scant clouds.... and it won't be more than a few hours before the sun will be much more intense.  And in those moments... I might be missing the 75 degrees with a slight breeze.  So hard to imagine that in just a short time, I will be all bundled up..... in the coldness of Fort Wayne.  But, for sure... I will be with many dear friends.  And over the course of the next 4 months, I will have the gift of seeing many more friends and family.  It will be good.  Speaking of peering out.  It was brought to my attention earlier this week that I was peering out behind some fear clouds.  It was leaving me heavy and burdened.  I didn't even fully realize that fear had leached onto me.... until I was writing and watched as the words from within found their way to paper.  As I reread what I had written... I realized that I had an unwanted visitor.  Fear.  I think it started while I was in Nairobi.  November was a hard month for Kenya.  Over the span of about 10 days, 64 individuals were killed.  For some, it was while they were in transit on a bus from northern Kenya to Nairobi.... and for others.... it was as they were sleeping at their job in a quarry.  They were attacked by members of the Al-Shabaab group.  If anyone was able to recite from the Koran... they lived.  If they were not, they were killed.  Most were shot.  A few (with varying reports between 2-4) were hacked to death.  I was in Nairobi when both of the situations happened.   I was sitting with a handful of Kenyans as they stared at the tv screen and heard about the 36 men at the quarry.  You could palpate the pain.... the unsettleness.  And somewhere in there, that fear leached on to me.  And as it leached, it's tentacles started reaching into other areas.  I found my mind thinking of what I would do if I was faced with proclaiming Jesus or denying him.  I was fearful that i would deny Him.  That was a hard pill to swallow... because I love my Jesus.  I found my mind fearful in other areas of my life.  Fearful.  I was fearful in areas that I am not normally fearful.  I asked a friend if I could pray with her.  And we found a time.  God allowed the Skype to work near perfectly.  It was as if we were sitting face to face in one room.  I started sharing and what came out was a plethora of fear.  Fear about this... and fear about that.  What had started as a small little leach had grown into something much bigger and just like a leach, it was pulling life out of me.  And Banange... (Oh Goodness), I didn't want that.  I want life.  And so, with two computers, a Skype connection, a friend, and my God... I poured out my heart.  And as I poured out my heart... the fear left me.  And in it's place... came the peace of my God.  That night as I went to bed... my heart was peaceful.  More peaceful that it had been in a couple handful of days.

Friday, December 5, 2014

A moving thumb and Dominoes Pizza.....

The laundry is out on the line drying.   Last minute washing.... and lots of last minute things.  Our time in Kenya is coming to an end.  Tomorrow morning, we will board a plane and after a brief layover in Rwanda, will find ourselves, God willing back in Entebbe a little after four in the afternoon.  It has been 17 days since we boarded a plane in Entebbe and began an unexpected, rather unknown journey back to Nairobi.  It's been a "put one foot in front of the other" sorta journey... trusting Him to lead each and every step.  And lead He has.  Since arriving, Ketty has had 10 radiation treatments, a bone scan, chemotherapy, and various blood tests.  She has connected with her doctor and various nurses, rad techs, and taxi drivers.  One thing that has been such a blessing has been the gift of being able to be somewhere where you are known and where those who know you care for you in different ways.  The staff at Mayfield, our taxi man Joseph, and others have poured into Ketty in sweet and real ways.  Earlier this week, we went out out to an all you can eat chicken place.... one thing that has remained consistent through Ketty's journey has been her hunger and love for chicken.  Her tastebuds have craved a variety and changing diet... but chicken has and continues to remain one of her favorite foods.  We invited along our Taxi Man Joseph who has often gone beyond the call of duty... he has spent MUCH time in his vehicle waiting for us as we have waited for Ketty to get into the radiation machine... or to see the doctor.... it's been such a blessing! 

Yesterday, I hopped into a taxi and went from one hospital to another.  My goal was to pick up the bone scan results for Ketty.  It was a short spin and drive.  Within a few minutes of arriving at Agu Khan Hospital, I had Ketty's bone scan in my hands... and as soon as I rounded the corner, I opened up the large envelope... the news?  Well, no sign of cancer in the bones!  Hugely Great News! I returned back to Ketty who was receiving her chemo and shared with her the good news.  

Shortly after four, Ketty's doctor came up to the chemo suite and met up with us.  We were able to ask all of our questions and hear from him on his plan for Ketty.  As of right now, she will have another round of chemo in three weeks with the plan of having a total of eight chemo treatments.  She will need some additional blood work and tests in the coming days and weeks.  We are thankful for a plan and next steps.  We do not know how the story will end.... but one thing we do know is that the story is NOT yet finished.  We keep walking and leaning into our God.  He's got this and He's got all the details.  We choose to rest in that.    

Here is a video that Ketty and I made a few days back.... I can't get it to play for me.... which makes me think it will not play for you all... I will keep it here and also upload it on my Facebook page where it will most likely be easier to play.

A blessing for me personally has been the gift of being able to spend time with Andria, who moved to Nairobi, back in September.  We are from the same home church in the States.  It has been so great spending time with her.... laughing, processing, and sharing life.  It was also so great for her to be able to meet Ketty.  We were all able to spend a good amount of time together.  We were even able to enjoy Dominoes Pizza Together.... We invited Ketty to our order in.... but surprise... surprise... she chose to eat none other than.... CHICKEN!  ( c : 

No Way... But.... 
Totally YES WAY! 

Two Happy Ladies... 

Already giving a thumbs up.... just based on smell and looks! 

And wowsers.... it was true Dominoes pizza..... A.M.A.Z.I.N.G! 

Love to you ALL!