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Entries from June 2009

Guess!

boy_girl_symbolsI've never gone for an ultrasound scan to determine baby's gender before, and  yet tomorrow, I get the pleasure of doing just that so it'll be a first for us.

Just for the sake of having a little fun, I thought I'd ask you guys to post your guess, boy or girl, as a comment here, and hopefully by Thursday we'll have an answer for us all! :) (If you've already guessed on FB, no need to do it here unless you want to.)

kate pigtails Medium Web view ~Kate


Peace?

The headline in the most widely read daily newspaper here in Kenya is; “Army ready for attack.” The armed forces here are planning for an invasion by Somali extremists. The extremists are attempting to stop Kenya from deploying troops on a peacekeeping mission in Somali.

When will we ever be able to live in peace? When will we realize that Jesus does not advocate using violence? When will we see that violence only hurts the innocent? I am afraid that day will never come. Till then we attempt to follow Jesus’ teaching, that blessed are the peacemakers. We do not have influence over governments, but we do have influence over the children and individuals that God brings to us.

One person at a time is how we are promoting peace. We respond to violence with love. We thank everyone who helps make this mission of peace possible by your donations. Without you we could not care for the 15 orphans (8 girls and 6 boys,) feed the hungry, care for the sick, defend the oppressed, and otherwise preach the Gospel of Peace here in Kenya.

Thank you and we pray many blessings on you.

Johnny Brooks


MY OWN WORST ENEMY

My grandmother raised me and she always had tons of plants around. I too have lots of plants as a way to keep her memory alive and because I love them also. The other day, I was looking at my favorite plants and it dawned on me that they look like beautiful potted plants in their current level of growth, but the favorites I have happen to actually be trees that grow very large and whose stems turn into bark on the outside if given big enough pots and the right conditions. I began to wonder how much of my own life was like these plants. These plants can grow, to a point, but will not achieve their all unless I am willing to continually make the investment required to purchase larger pots and to do the hard work of transplanting them and adding in the extra dirt and nutrients. I have known in my heart that it’s time for them to be transplanted but week after week, I’m content to do it “next time” or not at all. So, things stay the same while I only do what’s needed to keep them in their current stage of development.

How much do we limit ourselves by simply being content where we are and not being willing to do the work and confront the hardships required to reach our full potential, beauty, and contribution in the world to others?

James M the 2nd


Haiku

rain and window Splish, splash, pitter-pat

Rain streaking on my window--

Things are so unclear.

 

 

kate pigtails Medium Web view  by ~Kate Brooks

 

NOTE:  Denny, a friend of ours, stole some ideas from us for his blog topics, but he added a 'weekly Haiku.' I just loved the idea (Haiku's are addicting to write, you should try it), so we are stealing this idea from him! :)


Revealing

I use Facebook as a way to stay connected with people that I don’t encounter each and everyday. It’s a way for me to communicate with donors and potential donors to our project here in Kenya. However, I am convinced that God does not want us (Kate and I) to focus on fundraising. It is more important for us to just develop relationships, where money is not the agenda.

Sounds great right? If I am honest I will tell you that it is difficult to achieve such relationships when you exist off the generosity of others. I am always wondering; “Am I talking with this person just because they could benefit the project?” Tough at times, but I believe real relationships to be worth the effort.

Lonnie Hatfield, our “senior” team member says that I suck at fundraising. Which in the traditional sense certainly is true. I visited the U.S. last year on a fundraising trip, and never once asked for money. In fact a few times I revealed glimpses of myself that must have convinced many people that I was in no way a Godly man. (for example like right now I am listening to George Harrison's My Sweet Lord, and really enjoying it.)

Which brings me back to Facebook. There is this application that you can use to create a quiz about yourself. Then your Facebook friends do the quiz to see how well they know you. Well I created one, but mostly asked questions like; “What was I just looking at?” Impossible for anyone but me to know.

I have a hard time revealing who I truly am to people. Not that I am ashamed or even scared. I am proud of who God has made me to be, and I do not fear rejection. So what’s my problem?

Money. Apparently most people have a hard time supporting a missionary who is not a carbon copy of themselves or their particular brand of Christianity (i.e. a denomination or theology.)Teetotalers tend to send their money to dry missionaries. Evangelicals like ministers who actually work to convert the heathens. Wealthy donors like to see tangible results. The list goes on and on.

So I have hidden myself to appease the anxiety I feel about feeding my family and doing the work that God has asked me to do.

A few comments on my Facebook quiz about how it reveals nothing about me, caused me to start thinking. Seems they were right. I need to be more open and therefore risk offending you. Besides the more you get to know me the more you will realize that I will offend everyone at sometime. Even on purpose every now and then.

Now let me say upfront that I am not going to put every thought or belief I have here on this blog. Nope, if you want those send me an email or something. However I will be more revealing in the future.

Please keep looking at the “fruit” of what we are doing. Children loved and given a hope in the future, the hungry fed, the sick nursed, and the oppressed loved. I am very serious about my faith in Jesus and very serious about living that faith out.

Johnny Brooks 

 

 

Johnny Brooks, yes I am growing my hair out.