Kenya is 50

The East African country of Kenya just celebrated 50 years of independence in December! Take a minute or two to check out these amazing photos of the country, then you won’t wonder why I love it. Okay, so most people reading this probably didn’t celebrate Kenya’s jubilee, but if you think about it, 50 years is a big milestone for a young nation.

What was the U.S. doing in 1826?

Having an eggnog riot. Yep, you read that right.

So be patient with young countries [see through 1:17] and don’t underestimate them.

You may have missed the news about the 50th anniversary celebrations in Kenya; did you miss news of the bombing at Westgate mall in Nairobi last fall?

That’s what prompted a couple of people to ask me recently if I still want to go to Kenya. Yes. Please don’t assume I’m brave or something. I’m not. I worry about all kinds of things. And I’m scared of lots of things, such as snakes (kind of problematic when you want to go to Africa). But here’s the reality: there’s nowhere you can live that’s perfectly safe and secure. The U.S. learned that on Sept. 11, 2001. If you’re trusting in national security, the military, your home security system, your wealth, etc. you’re trusting in something that can easily fail you. Every breath, every moment, is a gift from God, even if we’re not aware of it or thankful for it.

So, yes, I still want to go to Kenya. There are so many things I love about it, and wish I could share with you: the hospitality, the sunshine, the brilliant colors, the smiles and the joyful singing. I hope some of you come visit once I get out there and settle in! One other thing I appreciate about Kenya: when I’m living there I’m vividly reminded that I’m not in control, and that I need to depend on God. Fears? They’re still there – but I’m more aware of God’s presence, greatness, and power amidst the turmoil of life. I learn to trust in God and depend on him to a greater extent.

What makes you feel safe? What are you placing your trust in? I invite you to meditate on Psalm 46 over the next few days, and remember that God is our only secure refuge.

Psalm 46:

  1. God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
  2. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
  3. though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
  4. There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells.
  5. God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day.
  6. Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts.
  7. The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.
  8. Come and see what the Lord has done, the desolations he has brought on the earth.
  9. He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth. He breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the shields with fire.
  10. He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
  11. The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.

About the Author:

Stephanie Lowery

Stephanie Lowery

Stephanie Lowery is a graduate of Biblical, and adjunct professor of theology there. She grew up in East Africa, and is currently pursuing a PhD in systematic theology from Wheaton College Graduate School. Her dissertation evaluates ecclesiological models in African theologies. Please read her personal blog.

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