We want to take this opportunity to express our heartfelt gratitude for all you have done for us and SMI. Not only what you have done stands out, but your friendship has been above and beyond what has been asked of you. We are and will be forever indebted to you and your family. By the by…. this started as a personal letter to our faithful donors… but has ended up being a post for the Website directed specifically toward them. Please excuse the pictures, as I pressed the wrong button and permanently deleted over three thousand pictures taken this year!
This year has been different than others, in that our Father made a major lane change, changing everything we were doing… again. The Holy Spirit directed us to change three major areas of ministry to be per scriptural precedent.
This change is nothing new… just the implementing of two-thousand-year-old precedents found everywhere in the scripture, yet almost nowhere in Christianity… especially here in Kenya.
Things like; redefining pastors primary jobs (taking care of members and not just preaching), getting members out of the ‘bleachers’ and back in the game, gathering together for the right spiritual reasons. and finally, redefining who should be doing what, when and where.
At first, we didn’t even know where to start. It appeared quite daunting. Yet, as we waded into the practical applications of these precedents, we realized we had been preparing our churches to receive these changes for almost five years. Here is a short description of what’s been happening in the last six to eight months.
Having His blessing, grace, and power we began to speak more boldly about the things we believe. The results have been rather amazing. It started in our little church in Miti Mingi who has never even had a pastor. As no one tried to ‘take over leading’, people began to talk to each other, which led to ministry breaking out in everyone. Members began to grow spiritually and our neighbors began coming to see God move among His people.
Then Robert, the overseer of Baruti, began training Baruti members to take responsibility and never come together at a gathering without having something to give. Every meeting was a sellout. No-one wanted to go home. Two brothers began churches in their homes that are growing. Last Sunday they baptized four more young adults.
Robert (our overseer in Baruti) told me last week that they are seeing other home churches (not StoneHouse ones) spring up in Baruti, as people witnessed the growth of the Baruti church. Hallelujah, we are not trying to create a StoneHouse empire. We simply wish to see the Kingdom of God, in its fullness, advance.
Keptembwa’s last gathering witnessed three hours of sharing and testimonies. Their ranks are swelling as the leaders learn to take a back seat and focus on equipping saints to do the work of ministry in place of doing it themselves.
Langa Langa has begun another home church with eighteen people present last Sunday.
What has been amazing is how one spiritual thing leads to another. The brothers in Piave church, are experiencing similar outpourings. Before we started sharing with them about ‘prayer walking’, three of their men were led by the Holy Spirit to begin to strolling around their village.
While praying and in the middle of their walk, they heard a man crying out in distress. Walking up to the house, they found him in the process of hanging himself. He had already tied the rope around a high branch of the tree and was minutes before committing suicide.
The brothers talked and prayed and led the man to salvation. The suicidal man spoke of his brother who was in the same shape. The Piave brothers went to his brother’s house and ministered to him. He is truly answering us even before we pray… or teach.
“It shall come to pass That before they call, I will answer; And while they are still speaking, I will hear. Isaiah 65:24
Now, this alone would invoke plenty of praise, but there is more… much more. We are almost finished with our Pavilion’s kitchen. As with everything on Windy Hill, the brothers put their heart into their work. The kitchen became a work of art and will feed the hundreds we bring to any and all SMI functions on Windy Hill
Are you feeling tired this year? Well, it’s because you’ve been very busy. Here are a few more things together we have accomplished.
In January you helped pay for a huge women’s meeting, facilitated, with the help of Dossie Briggs, who came from the US to minister with us for 3 months.
You also helped obtain a wheelchair for Leah, Margret’s 100-year-old- mother.
Because of you, we sent 33 children to school through the L.E.A.R.N. program.
In February you helped young Joyce get an operation correcting her scoliosis and then rehabilitated at Lillian’s house.
You funded an all-day seminar for men to be trained to train disciples and you helped buy chairs for the church in Keptembwa.
In March you helped fund our trip to America allowing us to see our children and grandchildren, friends and family. Thank you so much! When we returned to Kenya in April you sent three of our staff members and their wives to a ‘Farming God’s Way’ seminar to learn advanced farming techniques and how to use them as an evangelical tool for the Kingdom.
You helped us to have a marvelous all-day Youth Rally and helped bring many to the healing waters of Christ’s baptism.
In May… you helped us train our church secretaries how to keep good records and help coordinate events.
You funded the transport of seven pastors from Kericho wanting to be disciplined by StoneHouse brothers, to come for a few days to Windy Hill and began to learn what we believe and what we’re about. We will be visiting them for two days in a few weeks.
You helped us get funding for a borehole (a well) to take care of our neighbors’ water dilemma.
You helped us fund our churches to disciple their children.
You helped fund food, materials, and transport for seminars to train trainers in Kamagut.
You helped plant a new church in Rigogo.
In June you assisted us in baptizing more people into His Kingdom.
You helped fund transportation for participants and meals for our discipleship seminar on ‘Reconsidering Ministry’ for representatives from each of our churches.
You helped us visit and strengthen our new church families.
You helped us restart Wangui’s new sewing class in Baruti.
You helped fund a little boy’s new prosthetic leg and remove a huge tumor on his face.
You helped us preach the gospel of the Kingdom to a prison full of 250 women.
You helped us travel to Eldoret to teach an all-day seminar on discipleship to the saints there and visit a remote village on the way home, then, a week later to teach that same seminar in Piave with the saints there.
In August you supplied the materials to begin building a new house for two widows.
You helped us celebrate the baptism of five more young people.
Currently, you are assisting us in building a 200,000 liter stone tank to help supply water to our neighbors and church members.
No wonder … like us… you are suffering from exhaustion and adrenal fatigue.! But that’s OK because ‘though the outer man perishes the inward man grows and gets stronger steadily.’ (2 Corinthians 4:16) It’s been quite a year… and… it’s not even over yet!
So… from us to all of you… blessings and grace to all our donors for love and help.