Reading about Kenya with a breaking heart
I see the pictures and in my mind I also see everything I saw when I was there last year – and scenes from when I was in Kenya in 1970 when I was a student at Friends World College. I can almost smell the smells and taste the tastes of Kenya. And I mourn because in none of my memories was there the smell of tear gas or smoke from burning buildings. Pangas were the ubiquitous multi-purpose tool not weapons to be feared. I did not see churches burning or babies bodies thrown carelessly on racks in the morgues.
I read the Kenyan blogs and I hear the shock of Kenyans at how quickly their country has changed. I think how lucky the United States was to have had early leaders who were willing to give up power peacefully after an election, and what a rare thing that is.
I hold all these things in my heart and I pray. I think about the line in the Lord's Prayer about “Lead me not into temptation” and how I have seen that translated as “Lead me not to the test.” And I think how my faithfulness to the Peace Testimony and honesty and the command to love my neighbor and to bless those who persecute me would be tested if I were to find myself in such a situation. And I pray for the people in Kenya who are faced with exactly that test.
I think about the title of Alan Paton's book Cry, the Beloved Country. I think how this describes Kenya now.
God bless Kenya.
God bless Africa.
Lord, forgive our foolish ways.
Some sources of information:
A list of blogs on the situation in Kenya
Peggy Senger Parsons is posting reports from David Zarembka here
Carol Holmes has reports here