Sunday, July 15, 2012

Under the Acacia Tree

God has been amazingly faithful. Each person on our team is clearly meant to be here. We have had fruitful times in our seminar, discussing subjects such as “Who is God? Who is Man? What is the Gospel? What does the gospel do to a culture? What has the gospel done to you? What is health? What is poverty? etc.” All of us are learning much, and being taught by the Holy Spirit who resides within the others sitting around the circle. I have been thrilled to witness students genuinely investigate their own beliefs and evaluate if those beliefs are true, where they come from, and if they are consistent with a biblical worldview. Let me help you imagine a typical day.

I personally begin the day before dawn with bible study and exercise. Some of the guys have been joining me for exercise. It is 60 degrees and breezy here at dawn—perfect for outdoor exercise as the sun broaches the horizon while the wind rattles the corn and banana trees. We have a communal breakfast at 730, always porridge, pancakes, or french toast. We eat quite well. At 815 we have a group devotion together, some of the leadership and other guests here at City of Hope often joining us. Devotions consist of a few songs, including one in Kiswahili, and then inductive study in small groups led by the students. We are studying through Genesis and John simultaneously, in each case drawing out truths that help us engage with the questions above. God is clearly revealing Himself to each of us. Devotions are meant to end at 900 but always always go until 1000 because our hearts are so gladdened at the truths we glean.

After that the group goes in separate directions. Some go to the clinic to participate in primary care and help us endeavor to implement care of the whole person: body, soul, and spirit. Others are working in small groups to engage with the community here to discuss, learn about, and begin to engage such issues that are shared interests of the students and the community. We hope to come alongside the community as they begin to engage some of these issues with their own ideas and initiative. Thus far, small groups are working on the following issues: improved sanitation, improved cattle and poultry husbandry, female genital mutilation (a.k.a. female circumcision, a complex and devastating issue), how spiritual practices affect health, and traditional childbirth attendant practices and improved education for them as well as an effective partnership between them and our hospital. We have a wonderful, gifted, and teachable group of students. I foresee great fruit for the kingdom as I imagine them entering into various ministries in their futures, and I am so thankful for the opportunity to invest in them.

A few prayer requests:
  • Pray against forces of spiritual darkness. We have experienced no overt attacks, but recently there have been indicators that this is something we need to attend to.
  • Pray for financial providence for the Hopkins family. There are some questions that require God's direction as we seek discernment and strive to serve him with our lives.
  • Pray for a team of seven doctors and nurses who are traveling here to work with us this week.


  1. Thanks for the update, Ty and the specific prayer needs. I think about you all constantly!

  2. Thanks for specific requests. Will be praying!

  3. Always good to hear how things are going. We covet these updates and pray for all the members of your team.

  4. Great update, will be praying. We miss you all, but also are excited about the good work you are doing.