- Our big God adventure: Episode 1 — God saves us and delivers me from racism
- Our big God adventure: Episode 2 — God sends three angels
- Our big God adventure: Episode 3 — A ‘scary’ woman takes off her shoes
- Our big God adventure: Episode 4 — Countdown to Kenya
- Our big God adventure: Episode 5 – Finally setting out for Kenya
- Our big God adventure: Episode 6 – Water from Heaven
- Our big God adventure: Episode 7 – Reaching the unreached
- Our big God adventure: Episode 8 – A ministry and a child are born
- Our big God adventure: Episode 9 – How our small playgroup became one of the largest ACE schools in Kenya
- Our big God adventure: Episode 10 –Election violence, cookies and a poem
- Our big God adventure: Episode 11 — How God used an attack on our lives to soften hearts
- Our Big God Adventure: Episode 12 — From the deep hole of depression to the ‘one set of footprints’
- Our big God Adventure: episode 13 – The blessing of the boy under the bush
- Our big God adventure: episode 14 — Six homeless boys bring Isaiah 58:7 to life!
- Our big God adventure: episode 15 – God rescues a little Samburu girl from certain death
- Our big God adventure: episode 16 – “… and you will dream dreams and see visions (part 1)
- Our big God adventure: episode 17 – “… and you will dream dreams and see visions (part 2)
- Our big God adventure: episode 18 — God ‘interrupts’ our lives to plant school in remote village
After a 3-months break, Lydia Venter picks up again on her riveting account of he family’s missionary adventures in Kenya
Susan Ndungu became one of my first friends after we met in Njeri where we were invited to go and minister. We immediately clicked and over the years we grew very close to each other.
Although Susan had a full-time job with the government, she always had a heart for children and so, when her sister died, it was just normal for her to step in and adopt her daughter Ruth. Over the years many children and young people passed through her home to be loved and discipled in the ways of God.
In December 2011 Susan was giving a lecture in Nakuru on special needs children, when a young man from the audience approached her afterwards. He told her about Sylvia, his sister’s daughter, who had been born with cerebral palsy, but because the Samburu community saw this as a curse, the date for her execution has already been established. Yes, you’ve read it correctly — the community leaders made a unanimous decision to kill Sylvia.
Susan immediately contacted the children’s department working in those remote areas, informing them of what was happening. By the grace of God the rescue operation was executed successfully without major obstacles and Sylvia was placed in the safe custody of the sisters of a Catholic children’s home in Maralal. Susan then applied to take Sylvia into legal foster care, and this was eventually approved.
On Tuesday September 4 2012, Susan, Ruth (then 9-years-old) and I, hit the road to a small hillside market town in northern Kenya, to the east of the Loroghi Plateau within the Samburu District, to go and pick up Sylvia from the children’s home.
A distance that we could normally have driven in 3 hours at the most, became a 9-hour nightmare in which our driving skills were tested to the limit. We were not aware that heavy rains flooded the area, so we would come to many places that looked like mini dams, where cars and trucks were stuck in the water. Bystanders told us some of these vehicles had been stuck there for as long as three days.
I decided not to let the water stop us because we had to get through! Susan and I made declarations of victory and protection and then I would start driving while praying in tongues. I kept my eyes on the dry land ahead, ignoring the fact that water was at times flowing through our vehicle’s windows. When we reached the other side, Susan and I would burst into tears time and time again, expressing words of praise and adoration towards Abba Father.
Isaiah 43:2a,b — When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.
We also didn’t know that cattle rustlers had been terrorising the area, so when we got a flat tyre at some point and the police stopped to check if we’re okay, I was shocked to see a gun on an officer’s lap. The Lord knew that we would have never started this journey, if we had known even half of all the danger we would be facng.
At some point I was feeling very angry towards God, asking Him how He could allow two women and a child embark on such a challenging journey to pick a child who couldn’t walk and probably couldn’t even see or hear! His answer came in a calm and compassionate voice: “Sylvia represents the world at large … people are lame, blind and deaf, and yet I sent my only begotten Son, Jesus, to come to the world to rescue them.” Oh my … I was challenged and again inspired by the Father’s unconditional love for His own.
We were joyfully received by Susan’s sister and her husband – Anne & Joseph – who treated us like royalty. On Wednesday – after completing all the paper work and formalities, we finally headed to the Maria Mfarigi Children’s Home in Maralal. While waiting for Sylvia to be brought to us, we wandered through the wards, saddened by the sight of many special-needs children who were neglected by their families.
When the staff at the home finally brought in Sylvia, it was as if the Lord Himself removed all the stress and trauma of the journey behind us. Of course Susan already loved this little girl, but I was almost not prepared for the strong emotions I felt when holding the thin little darling in my arms. It was pure, unadulterated love flooding through my spirit towards her. The little girl could not help herself — she desperately needed Susan to do for her that which she couldn’t do for herself. And it was in that moment that I felt like I was beholding the essence of that which Christ came to do …
Rom 5:6 – When we were unable to help ourselves, at the moment of our need, Christ died for us …
Sylvia is now 15 years old. Susan has been passing through deep waters to care for her as her health has been a major cause for concern with uncountable visits to the hospital over the years. Yet, despite this, she has brought so much joy to Susan and everyone involved in her life.
So glad that Abba often neglects to fill us in on the detail when working to accomplish His will and purpose in our lives, and those He has placed around us. He usually just gives us enough to keep us excited as He knows very well that we’d be swept away by fear and our own sense of inadequacy. Oh, let’s say YES to Him every day! Let’s allow Him to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us (Eph 3:20).
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