Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Finally a "late" post, for sure...but a journal entry...Jonny's back from Africa one week now, and I just need to get this recorded in some words and photos...

Jonny came back in from Africa last Wednesday the 5th. He was very tired, "jet-lagging" and hungry. (over 19 hours of flying)

And every mom knows what happens when the troops return from a trip or retreat carrying all their dirty laundry, bags, and booty...

See those sandals there??? Those are a pair Jonny bought in Kenya...made out of tire treads...tough stuff...

He did not want to leave without bringing some of the "flavor and taste" of the trip back with him. It does pull up meaningful and special memories for him when he partakes....

This was my souvenir gift. It is a very heavy egg made of soapstone. It is beautifully painted. Mine was the elephant. Each one had a different scene on it.

Following are pics that I borrowed....ummm...nabbed?? from Al's photo album on Facebook that he shared with Jonny. Jonny only had some phone pics, so I am grateful to Al (their lead man) for the photos he posted that I might be able to share here and also just for my journal memories...

a larger group meeting

sleeping quarters

water tanks

Camp days

Cowboy Jonny and his new of these guys got to keep Jonny's hat. :-)

Yes, goat carcass. they ate goat meat on New Year's Eve...verdict? (it was good!)

The entire 11 member team together, finally...after 7 were stranded in Rome for 5 days when their connecting flight was missed.

The American team, some of the Kenyan team, and some campers...

Another Camp day...teams and games...

Yes...before they left Kenya, after Camp was over, they did get in a small-scale Safari and saw a number of animals..this is one of them, and yes...there was a fence between the group and THIS one!!

They enjoyed the country, the open landscape, the wildlife, and most of all ,....the people..

Jonny came back greatly MANY things. Part of his heart is back with his new friends. The walk into the slum on Sunday was an eye opener...something he will not forget. Over one million people living within guarded walls surrounding one square mile....It is NOT a safe place, especially at night. The ones who knew the Lord truly understood that Christ was their ALL...their everything. When you don't have much to start with, then you understand the sufficiency of Christ much better.
The eyes of the people in the slums ...who did NOT know Christ, Jonny said they were so empty and lifeless, staring at nothing, communicating nothing, as the group walked by the small houses in a street that was literally single file wide.

I am glad he took this trip. I know he has been impacted. I know there are many things going on in his heart and head right now as he adapts to "re-entry" back into this materialistic and entitled nation of ours. He has struggled. But we know it is all a normal process of visiting and being a part of a 3rd world country and culture, and then coming back to where God has placed him in this abundantly blessed and plentiful nation. He understands now the reason why so many of us in our faith and maturity levels have not quite grasped the term....I have everything I need in Christ. He is my All....IN all.

So glad to have my 3rd born back home. I missed him. I am glad he got to go on this trip. He is already planning for going back next year...NO surprise here...

That is my entry today. For any who stopped by, thank you for popping in. You are all dear bloggy sisters. Hope you are staying warm in this Winter season's cold spell we all seem to be getting a taste of. Looking for that Spring Robin!!!!

Hugs to you all.


Theresa said...

What a wonderful post! I am so proud of Jonny for taking this trip and giving his heart and his hat to these new friends! It sure sounds like it was worth all he went thru to get there! Have a most blessed day my dear friend! HUGS! Oh and I LOVE your gift of that beautiful EGG! Good and thoughtful SON!!!!

Grace on the Narrow Path said...

Wow, good for Jonny!!! I am sure he was impacted more than we will ever know. God bless him and all those that want to make a difference for HIM.
My kids will be going overseas this summer. I have to admit that I am a bit fearful. Please pray that God calms my heart.

Dianna said...

Yes!! The post I have been waiting for! Viewing the pictures brought tears flowing down my cheeks and then reading your insight brought back so many memories of my days away. It is true, Julie, that coming back to this great land of ours, (materialistic as it is) is where God has planted Jonny...and me...but I know for me, when I think of a certain spot in a third world country there are certain faces that come to mind immediately...and smells...hunger of the souls showing in eyes. I've never been the same. May the Lord richly bless Jonny for his tender tender heart towards the things of God...and his sweet, sensitive mama too!

I'm blowing you BIG hugs today...but with all of this wind and snow...not sure what shape they'll be in by the time they reach NC!

Love you, sweet friend.

Dianna said...

p.s. LOVE your new background...somebody's getting ready for Valentine's Day! ;)

Sandy said...

Hi Julie,
So glad your boy's back safe and sound.
Those teas look yummy and the gift he
brought you is beautiful.
We are so snowbound here! Six inches
on the ground, snowing now, three more
expected tonight. It's cold!

Privet and Holly said...

What a moving
and memorable trip....
One he won't soon
forget. Don't you
love seeing the candid
pictures of your boy,
all mature and attentive
and so grown up? I
bet you are very proud...
I would be. Our church
contributes to the upkeep
of a girl's orphanage in
Kenya and it is always so
moving to hear parishioners
speak of their experiences
when visiting there. We
are so blessed!
Happy Wednesday, Julie!
xx Suzanne

billypandnikkysmom said...

Oh wow, he looks good, a little skinny but good. You'll have to fatten him up LOL!

The pictures were beautiful, loved your little egg, so pretty! I coul duse a pair of those flip-flops I wear mine out!

Have a great night! Hugs to you!

Tete said...

Great post and a wonderful experience. You can never appreciate all that you have until you meet someone who doesn't. What a beautiful egg to remember his time away and his time of maturing.
Sadly, we didn't have to leave our own little town for my kids to experience this. At one point, there were a father and son living in a metal 8x10 shed in the winter with a space heater, no bathroom and little food.
One thing is for sure, you never forget what you see first hand.
Hugs- Tete

Julie Harward said...

I am so glad he is home safe and sound. I know how hard that is to come home to where there is plenty for all and remember a people you come to love that have nothing! What a great trip for him! :D

CACHANILLA73 said...

Beautiful post Julie, I have tears in my eyes. I know that emptiness your son described on the eyes of the people, because once I was like that. Our Lord has been so so so good to Us, to Me. Everyday I pray to Him to please never let me go and get lost. I'll be praying for those lonely souls so They can get Jesus in their hearts. I pray for you and your beautiful Familia everyday. Hugs!!