Sunday, 1 July 2012

Is it all over?

From some of the questions I have been getting about my plans to return to the UK, I sense there is another question that is being asked behind them all, “Is it all over?” The answer is a resounding, “No!” In my heart I am still ‘KJ in Tanzania’ – though I may not physically be in Tanzania for much longer my heart is still that of a missionary called to serve God cross-culturally. Instead, the question should be, “Where next?”, and this is a question that I am waiting on God to answer over the coming year.

During my time in the UK I will remain a member of Wycliffe Bible Translators UK and of the Uganda Tanzania Branch of SIL International*. This will only change when and if I feel God is leading me in a new direction. Officially I will be on ‘Secondment return period’ (a fancy name for furlough) and ‘Study leave’. As a result, my financial support system will stay the same, with gifts being processed through Wycliffe UK as usual. However, as I indicated in my newsletter, my financial needs will actually be increasing due to the cost of the study program and the generally higher living costs in the UK compared to Tanzania. If you would like to get involved in supporting me through this period, please let me know.

There is a prayer in 1 Thessalonians (1:11) that I recently read, and which I would ask you to pray for me, that our God may make me worthy of His calling and may fulfil every resolve for good and every work of faith by His power. I want to be worthy of the clear call God has placed on my life to ‘go’ and to ‘teach’. I pray that over the coming year God will make it clear to me where it is He wants me to go and how it is He wants me to teach. Thanks for praying with me over the past five years as I have lived in Tanzania, and for continuing to support me in this way as I look ahead.

*SIL International – a sister organisation of Wycliffe Bible Translators. I was sent to Tanzania by Wycliffe UK, and am seconded to the Uganda Tanzania Branch of SIL in my work here.

Back in Kenya

Kenya is where it all began, with my first trip to Africa being to Kenya in 1999, and for a few weeks I am back, though staying in a place that I have never been to before. For just over three weeks I am staying at a place called Ruiru, where I am helping to teach on an academic course, organised by SIL International, training translators, literacy workers and SU workers. I am teaching on the SU track, and have the privilege of interacting with a great group of students from Ethiopia, Uganda, Sudan and Kenya. It’s hard work, with lesson planning, teaching and marking assignments, as well as dealing with administrative tasks from Mbeya. However, as always, teaching stimulates me, so I am enjoying it all.
It’s not all work though, so here’s a few pictures of what I’ve been up to the last couple of Saturdays…
Olympic games trials - Kenya

14 falls, Thika (near Nairobi)
With some of my students from Uganda

Delicious Ethiopian food on Ethiopian night