Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Boldly and without hindrance he preached and taught...

After 7 days here and several trips to town in our Lori-car, Peter and I decided to walk today. It's a beautiful walk first on dirt roads with birds and flowers, then dirt trails with people and noise. About a mile in, we began encountering curious faces. We were greeted by a group of students. We spoke cordially and continued on our way. They followed close behind. I became uncomfortable (my Dad always says, "be aware of your surroundings donna" - i am Dad)... I paused to pretend I wanted to take a picture... they should pass on by... they didn't. They asked if we would take a “nap” with them. What? I asked why we would take a “nap” in the morning? They looked baffled; so did we. Finally Peter deciphered the confusion and said, “Do you want us to take a picture of you?” --- they looked relieved and with bright smiles exclaimed, “Yes, a snap...” We all laughed uproariously! How many times do we think we understand something when in fact we are confused? I love God's reminders to me that I do not understand what I sometimes think I do.

Photos were taken, more laughter was shared. Then they asked the normal questions, “Where are you from? Why are you here?” We answered. Then they asked something new --- “Will you please give us something we can show to others to prove we have shared time together?” Ah... there it was, almost always here, someone will ask for “something”. Peter pulled from his pocket an old, expired Walmart gift card. Bless his heart, he likely felt sentimental in some way regarding the card --- but his heart quickly releases “things” when it comes to people – i've learned this about him. They were thrilled to have the card as we explained what Walmart is --- they said, “Your supermarket at home?” we smiled and nodded. 

They asked more questions --- about why we lived here now.
I shared with them our ministry name --- Kweli Moyo. They quickly deciphered it's meaning in their Swahili language. “Moyo means heart”. “Yes”, I said, “but what of Kweli?” They talked among themselves finally concluding, “Kweli means truth”. “Well done! You are right. We are hear to help grow hearts that are truthful. And how can a heart become more truthful?” The baffled look came again. And I shared, “In the Bible we are told that all our hearts are deceitful; our hearts will trick us. My 'heart' might cause my mind to think thoughts that are not true at all. When we believe untrue things we live a very sad, confused, lonely life. But the Bible is filled with God's Truth for us. So, to have a 'Kweli Moyo' we must look to God and the Bible to help us know what is right and true and good”.
They were taking it in, I felt Abba near.
We talked a bit more.
A man on a bike, a street boy sniffing blue, more students --- all had stopped to hear what was being said. When too large a crowd gathers, and you're in the center of it --- it becomes quite uncomfortable. We gave cordial goodbyes and continued our walk. They headed back to where they had come from. The street boy shouted at us with garbled words, the others continued on their way.

Walking with Peter is a joy to my heart. 

We made our way to the Post office but just as we were about to walk inside the man on the bike appeared again. In a quiet, timid way he said, “When you were speaking to the children, I heard your words. You spoke of a heart that is true and God's Word. I was on my way to Marsabit (a town FAR north of here) and after you walked on, I continued on my way. But then I knew, I needed to know more about how a heart can actually become truthful and good.” Oh Lord... this man needs You – don't let me fail you now...

Two weeks ago in church here, another man had stood and quietly read scripture i'd never settled on before. He read from Acts 28:30-31. It's was our first Sunday here after our move, we needed deep encouragement --- God gave it to us with these words...
“For two whole years Paul stayed there in his own rented house and welcomed all who came to see him. Boldly and without hindrance he preached the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ.”
We were awed at the clarity and closeness of the words.
Oh Lord, you called us to rent a home for two years here in Kitale. We are eager to welcome all who come to see us. Thank you for letting us see here that Paul did the same – he surely must have felt some of the same things we now feel. Oh help us Lord --- we don't feel like a “Paul”, but we want to be able to boldly and without hindrance teach and preach about your Kingdom and your Son...

With this man on the bike before me ------ I heard the words roll through me again ---- teach him about my Son donna, teach him about the One who loves him... it's why you are here daughter.
Timothy holding his stool which he gave to Peter to sit on -- street boys on the steps.

So with Peter near I asked if we could sit to talk.
He agreed.
We sat on the steps outside a business we had frequented – I knew the men inside were friends and would be watchful over us.
I leaned into Peter and whispered softly, “Pray son, pray as I share, ok?” He smiled and nodded.

And so I began by asking, “What do you want to know?”
He had many questions. I worked to respond in ways that would not get lost in language translations. He spoke English --- but not proficiently.
I prayed as we talked --- “Lord help me. Put Your Words on this tongue of mine. You know what is needed most...

We learned his name was Timothy Too (pronounced Taw).
He knew of God as the Creator.
He knew little of Jesus.
Oh Lord, Jesus is the way, the TRUTH, and the LIFE ---- help me introduce him...
And so I shared of God's great love.
God made you Timothy so He could love you and so you could love Him...”
I shared of how most people struggle to accept and believe that they are truly loved.
We talked of the Old Testament --- he knew a bit about it.
Then we talked of the New Testament --- he knew less.
We talked of Jesus and his willingness to leave his home in Heaven and come live in a troubled world. He came to help us understand God and bring answers for the confused; He taught about God's love. He never sinned. We sin. He loved us anyway --- but He wanted to show us a better way to live.
Timothy said, “i've tried to go to church, i've visited many different ones in many different towns. I know I need something that I do not have. But when I sit in this church they say one thing, and then I sit in another church and they say something different. This church criticizes that church and that church criticizes the others. So I came to believe no one really knows anything and God is too far away.”
I understood ---- I ached as we talked --- we people have done such a terrible job of living out the love of our Savior.
But my good God was pursuing this Timothy ---- he was at least still willing to ask...

He asked, “So what is the procedure to knowing this Savior?” I smiled and answered, “God's Word says, “If you believe in your heart, and confess with your mouth... you will be saved.”
But Timothy --- you must truly believe. You can not simply say you believe and speak words with your mouth. Your heart must be Kweli Moyo --- it must be truthful. Believe truly and with your tongue confess, invite Jesus to be your Savior, and He will be with you always, you will become His child.”
He smiled. I smiled. Peter smiled.
By this time we had another crowd of street boys sitting all around Peter. It was becoming noisy --- and distracting.
Timothy looked away.
I prayed silently for him.
Oh God --- is this to be a time of harvest or a time of planting. You decide – give me your words.

I told Timothy we had to be going soon, my dear husband was coming to pick us and we did not need to be late. But if he wanted to pray with us now and invite Jesus into his heart, we could do so together. He looked away. Then I offered, or “if you would like for me to pray for you that God will continue to send others to you that will speak Truth, and give you more chances to understand and receive God's gift of Salvation, then I would do so”. He smiled and said, “My heart is not truthful yet, but if you will pray for me now, I will think on all you've said and see what God will do.”
Oh Lord... a seed has been planted ---- may it settle on good soil inside of Timothy.

We prayed.
The street boys wanted food.
We kindly said our goodbyes.
We walked on to the Post Office.

And I rolled the words again through myself --- “Boldly and without hindrance he preached the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ.”

. whether it's for planting, tending, or harvesting ----- may I without hindrance and with loving boldness attend to the portion that is placed before me. Abba presides over it all and ONLY Abba grows beautiful things out of the dust.

©2013 Donna Taylor/Reaching for the Robe


  1. Donna,

    While you are missed here in the States, it is true joy that I am able to share in your journey so many miles apart.

    I will pray for Timothy & all you encounter.

    Many blessings dear friend,


    P.S. -- because of the love & grace we were given by you & Steve during Intimate Encounters, Craig & I have decided to jump feet first and become 2 to 1 mentors. Thank you for allowing God to use you in our marriage.

    1. I'm so excited for the couples who will be blessed by you and Craig! Thank you Allison for staying connected with me/us --- what a blessing your friendship is to my heart! And thank you for praying for the many "Timothy's" --- prayer makes all the difference friend. :)
      love to you and yours!

  2. this is a beautiful story of following the lead of the Savior, and trusting Him to be the One Who guides each into ALL truth. the hymn "all the way my Savior leads me" has come to mind several times this week, and this is another time.

    it also makes me think of the words Jesus spoke over His disciples: do not worry about the words you will say, for words will be given you by the Holy Spirit.

    hope to walk this road with you soon! btw, is that a poinsettia?!?

    1. Yes Jenn --- that is a poinsettia ---- can you believe it?! I so look forward to walking this road with you --- Thank you for letting me feel as if you are almost already here with me. :)
      Can't wait to share it with you friend!
      you are loved!

  3. Thank you so much for sharing this very beautiful story Donna. It was a wonderful story and I am very glad that you shared this experience to us. I was really moved by your words. You are so blessed. You have touched the hearts of many people and have been an inspiration to many. I will be praying for you and Timothy. May God bless you both!

    1. Thank you so much Erin! What a blessed encouragement your comment is to me. Thank you for praying for us --- and for Timothy. Wouldn't it just be so, so wonderful to see his face someday in Heaven. Please Lord... may he find his way to you...
      Thank you for your encouragement.

  4. Wow VIP words for Timothy this church says this this church said that you were the church for Timothy thank you for bringing us down that road with you I felt I was their truly a gift in your experience and your writting :) wow

    1. Thank you Deborah! Your encouragement is a blessing to me!