In Swahili, the word “safari” just means “trip.” So, a safari doesn’t necessarily mean heading out into the bush to see animals. For us, however, it meant exactly that.
On our last full day, we woke up early (4:30 a.m.) and headed out to Nairobi National Park. Pictures are worth a thousand words, so I’ll just post photos below.
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We ended the trip with a last meal with our host families and much of the church staff who’d been with us over the course of the week. We exchanged gifts and words and prayed together.
It is, of course, impossible to summarize a trip like this or one’s feelings about it, but I will say what I’ve been saying all along. It was really wonderful, and even better than I’d hoped for. I was very impressed with Nairobi Baptist Church and the incredible work they’re doing in tough circumstances. I was encouraged by the Magoso School and Orphanage, and the eagerness of the students in the entrepreneurial class. I feel humbled by the whole experience. I think we served well — not in a selfish or colonial way, but truly aspiring to good work that is genuinely beneficial over the long-term. We let the local church take the lead, and I’m grateful for them. The Spirit was evident throughout, in the hospitality of families, the conversations with believers and not, the hopefulness, the service, the protection from and through illness and danger, and the Jesus-centered hearts of so many people we worked with. I learned a lot about a lot! It was an eye- and heart-opening trip, and one that really altered my perspective of missions and Africa. I’m thankful to God, and thankful to each of you whom he used to support me and keep us and the people we served in constant prayer. Thank you. Thanks be to God.