Joy in Africa

Our Lahash Sponsorship team recently traveled deep into the Rift Valley of Kenya to visit Nipe Tumaini Children’s Home. The home is a place where 12 children reside and receive wonderful care, love, education, discipleship, and food. Lahash has partnered with Nipe Tumaini for the past several years and we provide sponsorships for the children and support for the staff as they care for the children that God has entrusted them with.

I immediately noticed something upon our arrival – all of the children were filled with joy no matter their circumstances! I saw joy in the children we visited at Nipe Tumaini as they welcomed us to their home.

I saw joy in the children as they ate simple meals of rice and veggies and they were so thankful for what they had. I saw joy in the caretakers who love and care for the children each and every day. I saw joy in the children as we raced about the yard and played games with them. I saw joy as they proudly sang us songs of God’s love and recited memorized scriptures. I saw joy as they accepted candies and stickers from a supporter of Lahash. They always had smiles on their faces. So. Much. Joy.

It made me think about my own life and how so often it is so easy to complain and not have joy… things may not perfect. The bus may be late or there might be too much traffic on the roads. And immediately our knee-jerk reaction is complaining instead of joy. Instead of searching for the positive in a situation, we find the negative and open our mouths to share those volatile words that bring others down.

I found myself very inspired by the children and caregivers at Nipe Tumaini. And so I looked for moments of joy that I could see in my own life. I found joy in playing with the children and laughing with them even though language was a barrier. I found joy in the food that was lovingly prepared by the staff there. It is so beautiful to me to have a shift in perspective because of these precious children. I have carried that joy with me on the rest of the trip and I am going to carry that joy as we travel back to America next week. And I have found joy in hearing stories, enjoying laughter, and sharing simple delights with friends.

The Bible says that the “Joy of the Lord is our strength.” Therefore, these children truly exemplify the Joy of the Lord and truly draw their strength from him. I am so honored to have shared life with them and that I have been able to truly put joy into practice.

Thank you so much to the staff and children of Nipe Tumaini who opened up their home to us, welcomed us and loved us. I am forever grateful to have visited their home and to have seen first-hand all of the amazing work that God is doing there.