Sunday, March 3, 2024

Nothing New


Ecclesiastes 1:9 ¶  That which has been is what will be, That which is done is what will be done, And there is nothing new under the sun.

While we ponder on that thought, allow me a minute to give a Recent Mission’s Update concerning Gioto Garbage Dumpsite, Nakuru, Kenya.    

We returned home Friday evening from a mission trip to Kenya. While there I had the opportunity to preach in a Church, teach in several meetings, witness to numbers of people, and provide discipleship training to groups of men, women, boys and girls. We further participated in feeding hundreds and hundreds of very hungry people and gave fresh water to a large community of families who are in great need.

We also accomplished several other goals including making about 20 home visits, starting 5 small businesses among our sponsored families, and upgrading our 2 KE Learning Center classrooms with new solar TV’s for enhanced educational capabilities. The trip was a great success and we saw many pray to receive salvation for the first time and their testimonies were nothing short of miraculous. I was overwhelmed and thankful each day. Lives and eternal lives are being changed. All glory to God.

The overriding reason why I went to Kenya on this trip was to secure a location where some of the young girls we sponsor could be safe from the abuse many are experiencing. While in Nakuru, the Lord opened a door for us to lease a large 6 bedroom, 4 bath home, sitting on a fenced plot of ground, with a gate house, producing fruit trees, and even a chicken house, as well as room for goats and a vegetable garden. This home Is one I helped to build in the late 90’s, finishing it in 2002. Since then it has served as a home for ministers and their families. Only the Lord knew this door would open. It’s amazing how given time things come full circle.

This is owned by Rev Dr Musa Njuguna, our long-time friend and partner in the ministry. By the grace of God and in league with our friendship over the decades, he heard of our need and offered this home to us. Thursday morning our attorneys in Kenya drew up a 40-year lease agreement and we take possession of the property on May 1st. By the time our next mission team returns from Nakuru in July of this year, we will be ready to open our home for young girls from the Gioto garbage dumpsite who are at current risk for rape and pregnancy. These sponsored girls who have already been identified are primarily between the ages of 10 and 16.

I will be happy to share more details with those of you who wish to know. We will be responsible for electricity, along with general upkeep, and a few repairs and a fresh coat of paint which we will want to complete before moving the girls and their house mother in. The lease amount is a set 40,000 Kenya Shillings per month which equals about $270.

We will be putting some of the things needed for our Nakuru girl’s home on our second quarter giving opportunities list as soon as we get the estimates. We will need beds, appliances, covers, towels, cookware, dishes and a few chickens and some seeds for our vegetable garden. Thanks to all of you who have helped to make this dream a reality. God will bless you.

We don’t consider ourselves big enough, important enough, or ever able to solve all of the world’s problems. We aren’t looking for the last one who needs help … we are looking for the next one God puts in front of us.

In addition to securing the girl’s home, this past Monday morning I asked to meet with 5 people living at Gioto who we had identified as potential small business owners. I put a plan together and wrote a few simple guidelines for creating a small business within the immediate community of about 10,000 people. I wanted to make an initial investment in the 4 women and 1 man we had invited. When people heard we were teaching keys to starting a small business, over 50 quickly crowded into one of our small classrooms while many others stood outside listening through the door and window.

Besides going over the small business startup guidelines I had written as handouts, I also shared 5 principles of life I felt they needed to hear. Specifically:

1.   Success is simple, but it is not easy.

a.   In fact, it is very hard.

2.   What you do with the little you have is what you will do with more.

a.   God knows this.

b.   You will not change His mind.

c.    If you are faithful over a little, God will provide the increase.

3.   God will give you bread to eat and seed to sow.

a.   Do not eat your seed.

b.   Success is simple, but it is hard.

c.    If you eat your seed, you will fail.

d.   Share your bread, but don’t eat your seed.

e.   Make God your partner and you will do well.

f.    Protecting your reinvestment is critical to success.

4.   You must learn to say “No” to yourself, and to say “No” to others.

a.   Success is simple, but it is not easy.

b.   If you cannot or will not say “no” when necessary, you will fail.

5.   Your behavior will dictate your success.

a.   God gives you bread to eat and seed to sow.

b.   What you do with the little you have is what you will do with more when you get it.

c.    You must learn to say “No” to yourself and to others.

d.   Success is simple, but it is hard.

e.   Your behavior before God will determine your success.

Genesis 3:6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.

The first problem known to mankind was a simple behavioral problem. Even in a perfect world like the Garden of Eden, with sinless man governing all of God’s creation … God set boundaries. However, Eve could not say no to herself, and Adam could not say no to Eve.

Believe me, there is nothing new under the sun. Success in almost any endeavor, whether in business, marriage, family, school, or spiritual matters, is simple. Success in life is simple, but it is not easy.

Look at God’s top ten list … and btw – God is still setting boundaries.

The Ten Commandments

Exodus 20

1.   You shall have no other gods before Me.

2.   You shall not make for yourself idols and worship them.

3.   You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God.

4.   Remember the Sabbath by keeping it holy.

5.   Honor your Father and Mother.

6.   You shall not murder.

7.   You shall not commit adultery.

8.   You shall not steal.

9.   You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.

  10. You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor.

They’re simple, but they’re not easy. 8 out of the top 10 are “No’s”! 80% of the 10 Commandments are aimed at curbing, not encouraging, human nature. And 80% say no to what people are prone to do. Jesus said to treat people the way you want to be treated.

Matthew 7:14  “Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”

There is nothing new under the sun. The way it is, is the way it always has been and always will be. We need to become comfortable with no.

Success is simple, it’s just hard … but what we may not realize is that failure is harder still. It’s really harder to fail than it is to succeed. Like Jesus said: It is more blessed to give than it is to receive. (Acts 20:35)

The first simple step is to make Jesus the Lord and Savior of your life. It’s simple but it is not easy. Lay your life down at His feet. Lay down your hurt, your bitterness, your unforgiveness, your sin, your inability to say no to yourself or to others.

Come to Jesus … give it all to God, and begin a new life today.

Let’s pray.