Two Cups

He was simply wandering around the desert. Two cups were in his hands. One was for water. One was for food. His whole life revolved around these two things. Some days he found some. Other days he did not. He lived in the desert of Turkana. It had not rained in his area for six years. He didn’t look well. And why should he? There was hardly any food. And so he wandered around looking for whatever he could find. He could have been so easily overlooked or missed. My friend, Jim Shelburne, and I watched his meanderings. Jim’s congregation, Washington Avenue Christian Church in Amarillo, had paid to have a well drilled in this area. We were there to… Read more »

A Joyful Misunderstanding

We had just traversed hours on some of the roughest roads you can imagine. And I had the ache in my back to prove it. But we had finally arrived at CRF’s newest well in Turkana, Kenya. Site visits have always been my favorite part of working with CRF’s water projects, so I jumped excitedly out of the truck to greet the community and see the well that had just been completed. But I was greeted by something I didn’t expect — an angry person. I had assumed everyone would be happy now that clean, plentiful water was available right in the middle of the village. In fact, I had been in this scenario dozens of times in the past… Read more »

Changing a Name for Good

When I recently visited Kitale, Kenya, one of our directors, Priscilla Wairimu introduced me to one of the cutest babies I’ve ever seen. As beautiful as the baby was, his story was anything but beautiful. His mother had been sexually assaulted and decided to give the child to our children’s home in Kitale where Priscilla and our staff would provide for his needs. The father only wanted to have one thing to do with the child. He wanted to name the new baby. He searched for what he thought was just the right name and chose Ishmael, which in Kenya means rejected one. Can you imagine this name being placed on you for life? In the compassionate atmosphere of the Kitale… Read more »

What a Difference a Name Makes!

The Club — Drinking alcohol and fighting were about all that was happening in a town called “The Club.” It was named after what is commonly known as an “elder’s club,” which is a stick with a big knot on the end of it that is perfect for clobbering someone over the head. Francis Bii, our CRF director in Eldoret, grew up in this village in Kenya. His parents gave him alcohol for his breakfast every morning. There was so much unnecessary violence in this community that the nearest hospital in another town refused to take care of them. The chief brewer and the source of all the booze was William. The mischief of the village stemmed from his influence…. Read more »

Verna’s Goat

Have you ever looked back and been able to pinpoint one thing that seemed to change everything else? Maybe it was a job opportunity in a new city, a chance meeting with an old friend, or a word of encouragement spoken at just the right time. A day that starts off like any other can become the day that—when you look back years later—changed the course of your life. Verna, a sponsored child in Kenya, has had one of those experiences too. And it came in the form of a goat. Verna joined the CRF program in 2012. At just 10 years old, she had already lost both of her parents to AIDS. She was living with her elderly grandmother… Read more »