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 »

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 »

Bruiser

Bruiser. That’s what Jeremy named him. It was years ago, but I will never forget it. Yes, my youngest son took the money that his grandmother gave him for Christmas and bought a pygmy goat. Why couldn’t he have bought a video game or a CD? No, he bought a goat. The problem was that we didn’t live on a farm. We lived in Seattle. And you can’t keep goats in the city. Or at least you are not supposed to do so. Bruiser made too much noise to keep outside. So we had a goat living in our house. I learned a lot about goats living with Bruiser. I learned goats like to climb. Yes, Bruiser wanted to be… Read more »

The Big Test… Or Taste

The cup was shaped just like a communion cup. But it was a little bigger. A prayer of blessing was invoked before we shared it. We stood in a circle as we passed it around. It was a holy moment for us, but it wasn’t the Lord’s Supper. Nearly every- one from our Ole Miss mission trip had a taste from the cup. But one person was saved for last as we drank. He was different. He was a local man from this community in Haiti. He should not have to go first in this taste test. No, we weren’t drinking the proverbial Kool-Aid. But it was pretty dangerous still. We had just spent the last few days installing a… Read more »