I could quite easily say this about every single day in Kenya, but in many ways, this was one of my favourites. We had the chance to visit a Compassion project on the top of the great rift valley, and the views there were just breathtaking (and it made it super easy for sillies like me to get sunburnt, which was slightly less enjoyable).
I think one of the reasons I loved this day so much is because I came away from this day feeling so inspired and encouraged by a very special lady that I had the chance to spend some time with. Granny Esther lives pretty much on the side of the great rift valley. Well in her eighties, she’s almost doubled over from carrying water on her back for so many years and she was slowly losing her sight. Our task for the day was to help some of the younger women from the village collect some firewood for the day. The task wasn’t easy; the ground was uneven and covered in thorny bushes and it was so hot. I honestly don’t know to this day how Esther manages to collect this firewood.
Esther is currently the primary guardian of her grandson, who is registered in the Compassion project that we were visiting that day. Because of his involvement with Compassion, and because of the amazing work of Compassion’s RESPOND ministry, Esther was able to have a water tank installed at her home, so now her and her grandson not only have access to clean drinking water, but Esther doesn’t have to walk miles to collect it.
But here is the thing that even now, over fourteen months after I met her, still leaves me astounds me about this quiet, humble woman.
It was so clear through the time I spent with Esther how much she loves her Lord Jesus. She has this radiance in her face and in her presence of a woman who has walked with Jesus for many years, but at the same time is constantly humbled at her desperate need for a Saviour. But more than this, she just seemed to breathe thankfulness. Being thankful is something I feel I need to put so much effort into being, but it came so beautifully naturally to this sweet lady, and every time I think of Esther, this is what constantly comes back to my mind and my soul is always deeply challenged.
When I look at this lady, I see Jesus. I see a beautiful example of what it means to walk humbly before the King of Kings and to be in constant awe and thankfulness for all He has done for me. Even after all this time away from this place, I still feel this precious burden and it is this that has changed me more than anything else that I experienced in Kenya.