top of page

From Chaos to Grace: A Tale of Transformation Amidst Bullets and Hymns

Updated: Sep 20, 2023

Imagine a scene of utter chaos: bullets whizzing overhead, friends falling around you, and a world crumbling before your eyes. That's exactly where our story begins. As the firefight raged on, I watched in disbelief as my friends fell one by one, leaving me as the last one standing from our raiding group. The weight of the situation left me in a state of shock and confusion, and I stumbled to the ground, overwhelmed by the turmoil around me.

In that moment, it felt like my entire world was collapsing, and everything I had ever known was slipping away. But then, a glimmer of hope emerged from the darkness. Faint strains of music reached my ears, and I couldn't help but wonder who could be singing in such a dire situation. Driven by curiosity and the need for a change, I picked myself up and followed the distant sound. To my surprise, I found myself outside a church. Someone kindly beckoned me inside, and in my daze, I entered, not knowing what to expect.

I sat down with the pastor under a starry sky, cradling a cup of overly sweetened chai in my hands, while pesky mosquitoes buzzed around my ankles. As I listened to the pastor as he shared his remarkable testimony, a journey that had transformed his life.

Just a few short years ago, he had been a youth leader, dreaming of the next cattle raid, amassing weapons and ammunition, plotting raids, and glorifying a life of theft and violence. This way of life is all too common for many young individuals, raised in an environment that idealizes proving one's manhood through acts of violence and becoming renowned warriors.

However, against all odds, God intervened and rescued him, turning his life around in ways he never imagined. When I asked if he had enjoyed his previous life, he responded with a resounding "no." He had felt trapped, scared, and utterly hopeless. It wasn't until he experienced true freedom that he realized the extent of his captivity and fear.

Journey Among the Pokot: Bringing Hope and Blessings to a Remote Community

Earlier this year, I embarked on a series of outreach missions to support our dear friend, Missionary Mary. She had been sent on a mission to work with the Pokot people in the Great Rift Valley, a cattle-reliant people living in a dispersed and scattered manner, unlike the more village-centred tribes of Turkana and Toposa that I've encountered before.

On our first outreach, my family joined me for the journey, which involved a gruelling 12-hour drive down the steep cliffs of the Rift Valley on rough, corrugated roads. Upon arrival, we set up our tents, and our children revelled in the freedom to run around, chasing goats and chickens. Our time was spent visiting the four churches that Mary and her team had planted.

Mary's church had evolved significantly since its humble beginnings under a tree beside the crocodile-infested Kerio River. It had transformed into a bush church constructed from gathered bushes, with members sitting on rocks instead of chairs. The church's ceiling was a mere five feet high, and as I shared stories and acted them out, I often found myself inadvertently sending a shower of tiny leaves down my shirt as my head bumped against the leafy roof.

Slide show - tap on the arrows to see more photos

Snake Surprise: Sweet tea and a fancy dress

One amusing incident occurred during our visit to one of these churches. On the final day, a team from Mary's sending church in Kenya joined us, including Moses the driver, the senior pastor, Pastor Odero, three senior female pastors dressed in their Sunday best, and a young 19-year-old pastor in training. As I was speaking about baptism in the church, someone moved a pile of corrugated tin in the corner, causing a long, thin snake to dart into the church. In an instant, the young pastor in training leaped to his feet, emitting a high-pitched scream, and flung the contents of his hot, oversweetened tea (chai) over his shoulder, drenching one or two of the senior female pastors in the process. What struck me as amusing was that among the entire congregation and visiting team, it was this strapping young man who had the most extreme reaction. We all have our moments, and this was certainly his.

I think the snake was hunting these 2 scorpions - what do you think?

At each church, we spent time connecting with the people, listening to their testimonies and learning about their life struggles. We had brought with us approximately three tons of maize, a staple, that they grind to make Ugali, a kind of porridge. After spending time at each church, we unloaded about 700kg of maize and presented it as a blessing to the new believers.

Additionally, we gifted Mary a sewing machine. She intends to use it to train women in the art of sewing, enabling them to better care for their children by sewing school uniforms, saving money, and generating income. These sewing classes also provide precious time for Mary to minister to the women and engage in quality discipleship.

Our time in Pokot was brief yet profoundly impactful, leaving us with a strong desire to return as soon as possible. The place was remote, and the people were hungry for more than just physical sustenance. If any part of this story resonates with you, I urge you to pray for the Pokot people and Missionary Mary. Additionally, please consider supporting us financially so that we can continue to reach these remote communities, offering not only spiritual and emotional support but also practical blessings like food and sewing machines. Two specific needs that emerged from this trip are helping the pastor's brother (the one at the beginning of this post) clear his high school debt, which amounts to around $500, and assisting Faith, the youth leader at Marys church in completing their teacher training at college, which requires approximately $1,500 over the next 3 years. Your support can make a significant difference in their lives and in the Pokot community as a whole.

Slide show - tap on the arrows to see more photos


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page