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Walking the grounds in Mathare Kenya.


Saturday, February 24, 2024—Mathare Slum—Nairobi, Kenya

As I introduced Teresa to the children today, I explained to them that we were celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary this year. In the Bible, the 50th year is often set aside as a year of “Jubilee” unto the Lord. I oversimplified the concept of jubilee to simply a “God-party.”

I told the kids that we were beginning our jubilee with them. They loved it!

But not any more than Teresa and I.

As Teresa cut the ribbon for the official opening of the new kitchen at the school, I thought of all the prayers and the millions of shillings that have gone into the Miracle in Mathare. I could see the miracle in Pastor Kennedy’s face. This man has more faith than anyone I have ever met. And yet, this project of building the school and now the kitchen and offices strained even his trust at times. 

But, today the team from Germantown Baptist served hot, steaming bowls of beans and rice cooked in the wonderful new ovens God has provided.

The cooks were dressed in their finest dresses covered by brand new aprons. The smiles on their faces were the exclamation point on how God has favored the work here.

No more sweating in 10 x 12 cubicles with no ventilation. No more breathing the choking charcoal smoke from the old, traditional open fires these ladies have cooked over for years. Nice cabinet spaces and countertops to prepare the food on without back-breaking bending over pans sitting on the floor.

A great missionary said it so much better than I ever could. Work on the mission field has three phases: First, it is impossible. Then, it is difficult. And then…it is DONE!

Except for the finish work of the upper three floors of the new complex, the construction work in Mathare is done.

We sang. We laughed. We listened to the choir and heard original poems about life as a slum child. We cut a beautiful cake in honor of the day. And, we even were showered by confetti from a confetti gun that was popped over our party. Don’t ask me where they found a confetti gun in a slum?!

The Germantown team taught some leadership principles to the staff. Genuine words of encouragement were spoken over these faithful workers. And I? I sat in the background and soaked up the moment.

Other than Pastor Kennedy, I may be the only one who understands what we witnessed today. Fifteen years ago when we began this work in Mathare, we just asked God to help us rescue a few dozen starving street children. His response? Naw!….Let’s build a couple of skyscrapers in the slum instead just to show these poorest of the poor that there is no slum so dark and out of the way that my Light cannot shine in it.

My faith has increased. My strength is being renewed. I have seen it with my eyes. I have touched it with my hands. I KNOW what the Lord has done!

As I write, we are back in our room in Karen (Nairobi). Teresa is in the shower trying to wash a few layers of slum off before we head to dinner. I have noticed that I am smelling especially ripe tonight. I’m sure the U.S. team will wish I had showered instead of writing. But, the Kenyan pastors who are joining us for dinner tonight will recognize the fragrance. I believe it is called “The Kingdom labor of God” at your local fragrance counter. The aroma of God has overridden the sewage stench of the slums many days for me. Tonight will be one more reminder of how fragrant the fruits of faith truly are.

Off to dinner, THEN…a hot shower and along nap. It’s Saturday night in Kenya. Which means Sunday is on the way. AND I FINALLY GET TO PREACH THE GOSPEL. After all, I am a preacher first, and then a missionary tour guide. I’m looking forward to changing hats in the morning.

The team members who are preaching and teaching tomorrow will be trying to stay awake after dinner to put the final polishing touches on their sermons and lessons. Pray that God will give them just strength enough, and then let them fall asleep into His rest. He knows what He wants to say tomorrow. And, He can put His Words in our mouths. I know. I’ve seen him do it many times.

Lord, do that again tomorrow, please? Fill our mouths with your Words, so you can fill the hearts of those who hear our voice.

Your prayers = our fuel. 
By, grace, your brother, Mike Curry
Eph. 6:19-20