“…Let us rise up and build. So they strengthened their hands for this good work.” ~Nehemiah 2:18
The Lord laid this verse on my heart, and it was the theme verse of all we did on the mission trip to Kenya, Africa in February. This statement in Nehemiah 2:18 was made by the people after the report and encouragement to build, I believe God has commanded and burdened my heart to “rise up and build” too. I also believe that God wants all of us as Christians to, “rise up and build.” If we are going to build the things that God wants built then just as this verse says, we much “strengthen our hands.” That means we must commit. We must also pray, as Nehemiah said many times to the people. He also made clear in 2:20, that for us to be successful we must have the God of heaven to prosper us. Just as it was clear to Nehemiah what God wanted them to build, God has made it clear to us in His word that He wants us to rise up and build three things.
- HIS HOUSE “…Build an house unto my name.” This command was given to Solomon by God. Other places in scripture speak of building God’s house. One of the most important works we have as God’s people is to build His house! Many times, we get distracted from this priority and build other things that do not matter or are of less consequence. We build His house through soul winning, church planting, and discipleship.
- OUR HOMES Psalm 127:1, “Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it.” The instruction is not to build our homes, but to make sure that we are building our homes with the help of God. More than ever, we need Godly homes in our society that have been instructed, Empowered, and Improved by God’s help and our obedience.
- OUR HEARTS 1 Corinthians 3:9, “For ye are God’s building…” (10) “But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.” These commands deal with our spirituality and belief in God. Fear is the anticipation of what might go wrong and dismay is the discouragement and disarray that comes from fear. God says to not let either in our life!
It was a great privilege to host a mission trip for those wanting to come to Kenya and be a part of all that OGI had planned and prepared. We wound up with a smaller crowd than we expected due to some unforeseen circumstances but still were blessed to have ten others go with LeAnne and I.
We went to Kenya with several specific goals, projects, and purposes. God allowed us to accomplish every one of these and so much more. The main goal was to dedicate our new Training Center to the Lord and see the completed building. This project was started in December of 2021 and the ground was dedicated to the Lord by Dr. David Wood, Bro. Peter Chege, and myself. It was such a blessing and testimony to God’s grace and power to see what God did in a year!
The building was dedicated in honor of Dr. Wood during a tremendous service with over twenty souls saved and many people gathered for the occasion. We were honored to host several high-ranking government officials who promised to help us continue to grow our vision and ministry through the center. We need electricity run to the building and better roads and we got commitments from them to see that both of those were accomplished! This was a great answer to prayer. Please pray they will honor their promises and God continues to use the facility for His glory.
The training center that we dedicated has a main purpose of being used to train and equip national preachers and Christians to soul winning and church planting all over Kenya and eventually throughout Africa. This purpose has already been started and will continue more fervently as our vision for Africa comes to reality and our next phase gets completed.
The center will also help us serve the community and further other ministries. A well was put on the property first thing and has been providing free water to over 500 families in the village. In a little over a year, we have already given the village over 1.5 million liters of water! The orphan ministry will also be in this center and will allow us to grow. Already we have around 160 orphans that are clothed, housed, fed, and educated through this ministry. A widow ministry is also in this center and helps them learn a trade to provide for themselves along with assistance as necessary. A school is also in this building and is educating many young children in early grades.
A church was planted when we dedicated the property for the Ministry Training Center back in December of 2021. I am pleased to report that Faith Baptist Church has grown since its inception from about twenty or so believers to over 180 faithful in attendance every week and over three hundred on special Sundays. We praise God for how He is blessing this work.
While on this mission trip, God burdened our hearts to plant a church in an area that has never had a Baptist church in it. Naivasha, Kenya has a population of over two hundred thousand and is growing. God blessed us to plant a church plant during this trip and paved the way ahead of time with all the details, God burdened a man trained in OGI to move his family to the area after the plant, provided a place to rent, and Christians to help canvas the area. We held its first service while on the trip. I am blessed to report the start of Lighthouse Baptist Church and Pastor Michael Njoroge went great and we are already seeing God bless this work! We had many saved over the weekend of the plant and a good base of Christians for the foundation of this church. Bro. Njoroge’s pastor and sending church were there to help in the start and commission of this very needed work.
This church plant was initially covered by several churches helping financially. After being in Kenya, there are a few things the church desperately needs. They need a keyboard, some chairs, money for leasing a piece of land, money for a temporary meeting place and a PA system with microphones, and speakers to reach the village. All of this can be provided for about $10,000. This would allow a permanent church to be established. OGI has covered the expense of moving the pastor and his family to the village along with helping him monthly for the next six months. Would you please pray and give towards this need to see the great work move forward?