Category Archives: Uncategorized

Getting Back to Kenya

Standard

We’ve been asked by a few of our partners to provide a practical understanding of things we are raising support for. Below, are a few examples. If there is a specific area below that sparks your heart, you can click here or on the item itself to set up monthly support.

  • Ministry Support Needs: 
    • $35/mo. Sponsors an individual training for one church
    • $65/mo. Sponsors one Disciple Makers Class
    • $100/mo. Provides all gasoline needed to travel to trainings
  • Personal/Family Support Needs:
    • $30/mo. Housing essentials
    • $60/mo. Helps covers our medical costs while in Kenya
    • $100/mo. Helps to provide school fees for Jolie to start Kindergarten in Aug.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you are interested in partnering with us and would like more information about what that looks like, please click here.

If you would like to connect with us personally, please email us at: clinton.more@sim.org.

Thank you! 

Advertisements

Home Assignment 2016

Standard

kenya-map-push-pin-57686274Well, it is hard to grasp the fact that we are already on Home Assignment! As so many of our friends and family have remarked, it seems like yesterday that we were saying our good-bye’s and boarding the plane to Kenya.

Yet, here we are. Roughly 2 years down, so many new relationships and friendships forged and so many incredible testimonies of God’s faithfulness to share. We’ve been back for over a month and a half and it’s been a delight to get to share these with many of our partners already!

Some of our time in the States is going to be spent resting up a bit, spending much-needed time with family, visiting with our beloved partners-who have been so instrumental in making all of these testimonies a reality (!!)– and continuing to share our story with others as the Lord opens doors.

GuideBook coverGod blew the lid off of our expectations in this first term, with all of the additional ministry opportunities for both Clinton and Pahtyana, and directing us to write a book and launch a School of Discipleship! He not only established our footsteps but He faithfully expanded the borders of our territory. We’ve trained further throughout Kenya than we ever expected to in this first term, and have had more opportunities to reach people than imagined. We are praying for the same thing here on Home Assignment. Let us explain…

It is our desire that we not just share and give while we’re “on the field” but even when we’re back, it is our desire to bring back encouragement to those who believed in us, invested in us, and supported us all the way. The testimonies that we carry with us are beacons of Hope and Truth that God’s Word stands, that what we read in the Scriptures, specifically the beauty of the early church in Acts is available to us today! That kind of engagement, that pure community, that investment in each other and the Kingdom…The testimonies we carry with us also bring Hope to those who don’t yet know about the power, the TRUE power of finding Christ –through relationship with others. 

As we continue to raise the support needed to return to Kenya in June and carry on the work, it is our heart to share this Hope with everyone God leads us to. It is our constant prayer that the words they hear will plant seeds of life within their hearts. The Family of God that we find within true discipleship with each other, is meant for each and every one of us. Not just in Kenya. Not just in America. But everywhere. So, it is our heart and passion to make this Truth known wherever we find ourselves.

So. Home Assignment 2016 has officially commenced for the MooreFour. We’ve been so blessed by the welcome we’ve received from everyone here and have loved every second of getting to share about what ALL has happened over the past two years.

Thank you, Lord for all that You’ve done and all that You are in our lives!

Thank you to our wonderful partners who have aligned themselves with what the Lord is doing in and through us and have helped to make this all possible!

Lastly, thank you to our new partners- you are now a part of an incredible team of people from around the world who believe in reaching beyond our own borders to bring Hope, to bring Light, to bring Love, to bring the Family of God to those who like us, are longing for something more!  Welcome! 

Sincerely,

C,P,E&e

IMG_4192

 

 

The Eye in the Storm

Standard

*For the optimal experience, play this while reading…

Sigh. There are those days in the throws of a hectic week, when you have to fight to carve out much-needed time for yourself, sans little people. So, you dutifully drop them off at school, and make your weary way alone to a coffee shop, order your favorite drink and a lightly warmed chocolate croissant. You miraculously find an unoccupied corner with three comfy chairs, and one table between them. You plop yourself down, unpack your stuff, journal for a bit to clear the clutter in your mind and heart, and then… pull out your laptop. This is the real treat – uninterrupted writing time, all to yourself. A highly-sought after treasure in the land of parenting.

As you begin typing and begin to unpack all that weighs within, you find the snappy jazz ensemble playing overhead is…fun, but a bit chaotic in the moment, and the last thing you need is more chaos swirling around you right now. No. So, you put in your headphones and put on the delightful soundtrack to the movie, The Words, turning it up a few notches to drown out the clinking and the chattering that’s steadily rising as the morning unfolds.

The sweet, inviting, flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg descend down your throat as you waft in the aroma… You begin to submerge yourself further and further into this world you’ve diligently crafted for yourself. The deeper you go, the more the words stop peeking and begin pouring themselves out, and the more your soul finds itself again. The moments are becoming sweeter and sweeter, refreshing your spirit like nothing else. You watch the wintery wind, brisk, unrelenting, whisk the leaves, trash and twigs to destinations of obscurity all around your tightly forged, glass-encased corner of solitude and tranquility.

And then that moment pauses and as it inhales, in walk 4 adolescents, roughly 11-13 years in age. No parents, just the bejeweled bikes that brought them here. One of these little people in particular stands out to you- black hair cropped in the back, with long, bleached oily strands in the front, draped “stylishly” over her eyes, with giant, sparkly heart-shaped sunglasses, dressed all in black and ready to prove her point, whatever it may be. They choose the table adjacent to your corner. As they loudly drag extra chairs over, they giggle and squawk at the noise they’re making. You subtly turn your music up and focus more intently on your screen, tightening your grip on the given moments you need so desperately. It doesn’t take long for them to notice you. All children have a sixth sense about these things, after all.

They start talking to themselves and looking over their shoulders at you. Then Sparkly Heart Girl stands up and defiantly walks over and plops down in the chair next to you, in “your” corner and looks directly at you. She sits on the furthest side of the chair closest to the window, not exactly courageous enough to sit right next to you, but bold enough to sit there in the first place. Her comrades look shocked and in awe that she would be this bold. After all, everything about you says, “I’m in my precious space, please do not disturb.” But Sparkly Heart Girl, has a point to make. She does a stare down with your lowered forehead as you write a mere 3 feet away, adjusts herself on the chair, moving closer to the middle. She bumps your crossed ankles with her scuffed and frayed Converse sneakers and stares at you to observe the inevitable reaction. When there is none, she does what any self-respecting pre-teen making a point can do, she reaches over your bag on the floor, definitively puts her cup on “your” table, right next to your cup, napkins, headphone case, and charger. Gasp. Her fan club is aghast. But then when there is yet a reaction to be observed, she grabs her sugary drink from the table and immediately jumps up to rejoin her group. Oh, but not before plopping down on the other chair next to you and promptly falling off the corner of it onto the ground because in her newly minted defiance she misjudged it’s location. Fits of squeaky laughter fill the air, circling around you, but you remain in your sphere. Still, unmoved, absorbed in the music and moments you’ve fought for.

They suck down the dredges of their whipped cream laden drinks and leave to mount their bikes again. But not before Sparkly-Heart Girl makes her last stand. She leans in on her bike, just outside your glass-encased world, and does a stare down with your forehead one last time, for posterity’s sake, you presume. Yet, this time… you look up. And lightly smile.

Yes, I see you Sparkly-Heart Girl, your eyes say. Yes, I need to be seen and heard too. But unlike you, this morning, I do not need to be heard by anyone around me. I am heard by everyone around me all day long. By my own children, by my husband, by those I work and live life with. In fact, those around me count on what I say to them daily. For guidance. For affirmation. To be molded, to be released. But this morning, this moment, I do not have to be heard by them, nor do I need to be heard by them. I need to be heard by my own self. I need to hear what I have to say. And as you continually press your presence up against the glass of my world, an act of youthful desperation in a way, you infringe upon my own act of weathered desperation.

So, thank you, Sparkly-Heart Girl, in your desperate defiance of social norms, you have helped me define something for myself… The storms will never cease. This much is certain. But there are ways to find the eye in those storms, to grasp at that peace, to reach out and cling to that hollowed chasm that the chaos can dance around but never touch. Sometimes, this peace is brought in by others but then there are times, times when no one can bring it to you. You just have to buckle down and be that chasm encased by chaos yourself.

 

Facing the Foreign Familiar

Standard

selfie within a selfieAs I’m nearing the eve of our departure for the States on our first home assignment, I must confess, I’m a bit shocked. In some ways, it feels like yesterday that we were getting our bags unpacked and our little house outfitted here in Kenya. But to be nearly two years in, and looking now at closing up our little house for the first time, is mind-boggling. Where was all of that time spent?? In reflection, it was spent traveling, training, getting malaria, making multiple hospital visits for various ailments, enjoying quality conversations over steaming cups of Kenyan chai and mandazi with newly acquainted friends, learning Swahili, failing at Swahili, trying out new areas of ministry to fail and try again and again, hanging the laundry up to dry in the African sun day in and day out, crying tears of exhaustion and tears of elation, and above all coming face to face with a new self. A self well known and a self still to be known.

As I face returning to the familiar, I own that I am not the same as I was when I left it for foreign lands. I own that when I step foot on the soil of my homeland, it will not feel quite like the home I knew and once invariably belonged to. I own that I will be a foreigner in the familiar, treading lightly on old, well-worn paths. I now understand this byproduct of living abroad, that I belong nowhere, and yet feel that I can now belong anywhere, in a sense.

What will it be like to be “home” but to realize in a new way that “home” is what I carry with me? That as a wife and a mother, I.Am.Home. to three hearts. This is my cherished burden to bear and my blessing to bestow. I own the trials of this first season, allowing the lessons within each one to chip away at the rough edges. I own the triumphs as well, allowing the hard won victories to propel me forward in fierce Hope and carefully crafted perspective.

Yes, nearing the eve of our departure, I face the foreign familiar. But when  I stop to reflect on this, I see that I’ve been facing the foreign familiar all along, it’s been staring back at me in my own reflection.

 

 

FLOODS, FIRES and FEET – August 2014 Update

Standard

PRAYER REQUESTS:
– Adjusting to ministry and family schedules and trying to be intentional to set good boundaries to keep our family and selves healthy.
– Adjusting team dynamics as we join our ministry team.
– Clinton injured his shoulder moving sand bags, hoping it is minor and will heal itself, but going to have a doctor look at it this week.

PRAISES:
– Elly loves her new school and Jolie is adjusting very well.
– We got a new office for the ministry and are settling into the space very well.

PARTNERING WITH US:
If you have a heart for this ministry and want to learn more
about partnering and walking alongside us in ministry, please click here to learn more about partnering with us!

CLICK HERE: To play with a fun interactive Google Map with pictures and see where we traveled and where ministry took place this month.
CLICK HERE: To see a photo album of this month’s ministry and family moments

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Slumberless Slumber Party

Standard

IMG_0114My almost 6 year old had her first slumber party last night… (Yaay!!) At our house. (Uhh…)

I fully admit that when I agreed to host this, not even 48 hours beforehand, I did not in any way, shape or form, accurately recall what slumber parties were actually like with 5-7 year olds…until all girls (5) were assembled, squealing and jumping on the couch and my fearless husband said, “Good luck” as he very rapidly closed the door behind him and headed/sprinted upstairs never to be seen again all night. Oy.

But all in all, they had a great time! I mean how could they not? A room full of seemingly “limitless” snacks, dress up clothes galore, your best friends, nail polish, and only one adult present who you suspect could possibly be shelf shocked and therefore, not fully capable of handling the pure insanity you know you and said best friends are about to evoke. What’s not to love, right?

IMG_0113Well, if you’ve ever met me you know that no event that I am entrusted with can ever be simple. “It just can’t.” (Yes, quoting Frozen) Sooo, on the docket for this all-important first event were: Lots of snacks (even snuck in carrots & cucumbers successfully), dress-up, sing-a-long time w/ a pink mic, nail painting, story time, and special showings of: Berestain Bears- Slumber Party and Gigi, God’s Little Princess- Slumber Party. Then in the morning it was “sleeping in” until 7:30 then play time, fruit and yogurt cups, chalk drawing outside and finally a special brunch for all the girls and their mommies. Annnd now I’m dead.

IMG_0119But my little extraverted first born had the time of her life. She told me this morning, “Mommy!! This was so awesome! I didn’t sleep at all, I just lay here smiling and looking at my friends!” I just realized that sounds totally creepy, but she was SO happy to be with her favorite people under a fairy tent all night that she didn’t (supposedly) sleep a wink. Mission accomplished! 🙂

Annnd now it’s time to go out for dinner (yeeeah, not cookin’) and then bury myself in a hot bubble bath and speak to no one for the remainder of the evening.

Signing off,

Introverted Mommy of little princesses

Come Rain or Shine

Standard

IMG_1249.JPG
Well, what started as a cozy, little afternoon rain storm this weekend very quickly turned into a torrential downpour that all but flooded our house as well as the other ones down the way. But thankfully, as we were frantically working at our neighbors to get giant sand bags in place and channel the “river” down the sidewalk using wash tubs, we popped back over to our house to get supplies and saw how bad it had gotten in just minutes. We then all shifted our efforts “upstream” as it were and again frantically began diverting the water as best we could.

_MG_4017The downpour intensified as we rapidly cleared drains and made make-shift sand bags out of Nakumatt grocery bags, ziplock gallon-size bags and the nearby construction sand. Other neighbors from across the Compound came running out to help and together we began to make progress. The water was up past ankle-level but we had managed to keep it from spilling over the front step into our kitchen. The house at the end of the path, which is notorious for getting flooded, so far, had also successfully kept the “river” at bay by all of our efforts.

_MG_4018As more people came to offer assistance I began to hear stories of their experiences with the rains in Kenya, and the previous floodings of the other houses on the Compound. People reminisced as they filled sand bags and swooped bucketfuls of muddy water and I was reminded yet again of the wealth of international experience we were surrounded with. Not to mention, the wealth of selfless and giving hearts, who had come out in the midst of their own responsibilities that day, some of which included current ministry and important events.

As I noted in the moment and here now reflect on this experience, three truths stand out:

This is Kenya living-being ready at a moment’s notice for the climate to change (and lately more than one climate has been) as things rarely remain as they first begin. KEY: Kenya living has a compounded component to it.

This is Compound living-recognizing that when that climate does change it doesn’t just affect your household but those connected to you as well, which in truth, is everyone. KEY: Compound living has a communal component to it.

This is Community living- owning the fact that firstly, what affects one affect all, and secondly, we all will only make the most of it through the pouring out of ourselves for those around us AND the humble reception of others doing the same for us. KEY: Community living has a circular component to it.

In Kenya, in my most recent experience, the idea of being self sufficient and fully independent of others is an idea that simply doesn’t make sense. The understanding that we were created to be in community together is lived out every single day, come rain or shine and I for one, am so very, very thankful that it is.

Karibu Malaria

Standard

Well, it was a very bizarre and long weekend as our family resurfaces this week. In short, Clinton had been feeling unusually sore and tired last week and late Friday night it escalated to major chills and a fever which then suddenly spiked to 103.3. Being that Clinton hasn’t had a fever since infancy I instantly was on the alert. With our SIM doctor on home assignment I wasn’t sure of who to call. But after several calls and texts to neighbors I was able to connect with a couple of our doctors. One of which happened to be staying on the compound but was headed out of the country within the next few hours. So, I gingerly helped Clinton downstairs and she took a look at him.

Fever, chills, intense pain, having gone to Western Kenyan recently = Malaria (most likely). Hearing these words filled me with dread and a level of anxiety I had yet to experience since moving here. Malaria. How can this be, we took anti-Malaria pills? What does that mean? What do we do? Where do we go? All these questions and more were racing through my mind in an instant. But as it turned out that we caught it early and it was recommended that we go to the ER in the morning.

After a few hours at the ER the only thing that was clear from the blood work was that he had a bad viral infection and we were told that Malaria doesn’t always show up right away. So, he was given medicine for that and for Malaria as a precaution and we were sent home. The rest of the weekend was a time to settle in and get comfortable as Clinton needed lots and lots of rest. On Sunday, the other symptoms that hadn’t shown up finally did and it seemed even more certain that he had it.

Now that it’s been several days and the medicines have been working well, Clinton is up and about again, his usual cheerful, ornery self. Thank you, Lord. Looking back, I am filled with gratitude at the community that we’re a part of. There were a few key individuals who stayed right there with us from the get-go and were willing to step in and take us to the ER if needed and care for our girls while we were gone. Others who called around getting us the information we needed and many people who have consistently prayed and checked in with us on his condition. I am also very grateful for the provisions that were in place that made it possible for us to see a doctor and get the medicine that was needed.

So, here we are. Another day, another adventure for the MooreFour!

 


 

 

Three Months and Counting- An Update on Kenyan Life

Standard

Somewhere in the descending fog of cultural adaptation, language learning, 4-inch slugs, flying termites and SO much more, we’ve whizzed passed a milestone of 3 months being in country! Wait, how did that happen!? I know, I know, one day at a time, right? Well, after 3 months, we finally feel settled in our new home and are now accustomed to our daily schedule of preparation for full-time ministry. Thank you for your prayers! It’s been a relief to find stability and consistency each week in the things we’re doing.

ImageWe are continuing to adjust daily to the Kenyan way of life, which is at a more relaxed and calmer pace than the typical American one. For those of us who are goal-oriented, this has proven to be a bit of a challenge, but a welcome one. We’ve also seen why things need to be more “flexible” schedule-wise here as issues consistently come up with family affairs, transportation, police affairs, public demonstrations and so on that all greatly affect schedules. This has given us multiple opportunities over the past 3 months to love and serve those in our lives affected by these variables and provide a safe, secure and godly place for them to come to when needed. These opportunities have been especially significant to me (P) because of something the Lord began speaking to my heart over a year ago about His purpose for our family in ministry. One of the things that He impressed on me was that of a lighthouse- being a source of stability and guidance, a safe haven to those in the midst of the storm. It has been tremendously encouraging and affirming to see how already our family has been established here at such a time as this to serve that very purpose.

As far as our girls, they are adjusting quite well. Even in the times when they’ve expressed sadness at missing loved ones back in the States or not feeling comfortable here yet, they’ve felt secure enough to tell us. These times have given us rich opportunities to further develop their reliance on us and on God. We have made a point to regularly Skype with family and friends and that has also helped with the homesickness. We as their parents have been continually astounded at the way God has faithfully provided a loving and supportive community for them (and us) here- both on the compound and with the Kenyans He’s brought into our lives. Both girls are making friends quickly, (MK’s and Kenyans alike) with ease and grace. We have also been encouraged to see how they have grown in their relationship with each other and have truly become the best of friends (with of course, plenty of opportunities to forgive each other and turn the other cheek.)

We happily celebrated Little E’s 3rd birthday here on the compound this past weekend and invited our Kenyan friends to join us. It was Imagewonderful to see the fullness of the community God has given, jointly celebrating our youngest daughter! She has been beaming for days and keeps saying how much fun she had at her party. Check out our Facebook page to see the photo album.

Big E recently shadowed her new school for a day and absolutely loved it! She will begin in August but had the opportunity to get to know her teacher more and see what it will be like to be a big Kindergartener! When we picked her up, her teacher said she was sassy (in a good way) and had NO problem interacting with the other students and making friends. She is now counting down the days to when she’ll get to go to school for “real”.

ImageAs for Clinton and I, we have definitely faced one of the biggest challenges of our life establishing our family here. But we have seen day in and day out our God shine brighter before us and within us than ever before. We have felt His presence in our hearts and lives in a new and fresh way, and have a much deeper sense of what it means to follow the Shepherd into the unknown of His perfect will. I recently posted a blog about my personal experience here over the past 3 months, click here if you’d like to read it. We have gotten settled in our home church at K3C and have started attending a T-Group (Tandaza group) on Wednesday nights, which we love! The Lord is also opening doors for us to get more involved at K3C and begin serving.

Clinton and I are excited to pass this 3 month milestone! This signifies the half way point through our first (mini) season in Kenya. Our next big milestone will be the 6 month mark in August when Big E will begin Kindergarten and we will officially begin our ministry. As this time of preparation begins to wane and this big transition draws near, we are pressing in deeper to the heart of our Savior, listening closely to His voice as He continues to prepare our family for what is next on the horizon.

Upcoming Plans: We as a family are planning on heading out to Western Kenya with Colin and Fey soon for a week to shadow a CellKenya training and to do a “trial run”, as it were. We are keenly excited for this adventure and opportunity to witness firsthand the incredible ministry we are now a part of! Please keep us in your continual prayers throughout the coming weeks and stay tuned for updates!

 


 

 

Changes, Challenges and Chances: A Reflection on the First Three Months of Living in Kenya

Standard

Tomorrow marks the 3rd month of living in Kenya for my husband, my two little girls and myself. Wow, a quarter of a year already. I must admit walking through the experience has been quite different than I had for so long envisioned, which of course, was to be expected. Very little is ever as it seems it will be. That being said though, I have been surprised to see how I in the end, reacted to all of the changes, challenges and chances presented. Even though I knew it was going to be one of the hardest things I’ve ever endeavored to do, I still envisioned myself powering through it, a pillar of strength, ability and grace for my family and those supporting us. Instead, I more often than not felt bowled over by emotions of loss, grief, deep-seeded insecurity, vulnerability, crippling self-doubt and anxiety. Not exactly a pillar. Yet feathered in between all of these varied emotions, I discovered a tenacity to my personality that I never knew existed. As I daily dug my heels into the African soil I was now standing on, with each hand holding one smaller and more vulnerable than itself, I pressed through the labyrinth of my soul and to my surprise stumbled across traces of strength, depth, love, openness, optimism, and unfettered joy. Elements that I had long forgotten existed that were appearing as seeds of hope.

As I began to take heed to these perceived seedlings in my spirit, something within me suspected that they might not in actuality be seedlings but roots instead. As the days went by and I struggled with emotion after emotion, I continued to meditate on this with the Lord and felt Him ushering me to a revelation: The winds of change will always shake the leaves from the trees, but what remains unshaken are the roots of the tree that those leaves perpetually grow out of. If the tree focused only on the leaves being blown from its branches, would that serve anyone? No. Rather it remains steady in itself and allows the storms to come and go. Likewise, if you focus more on what holds you steady and strong within rather than what shakes the surface, you will remain standing tall.    

This might be an elemental lesson for many but when you’re the tree at the center of the storm, sometimes you have to re-learn these lessons from a different vantage point for them to really sink in. Remembering who you are at the center and Who is at that center means the difference between surviving and thriving in times of change; is the north star that enables us to navigate successfully the challenges surrounding us; and is the vision needed to not only identify but make the most of the chances presented to us in the midst of the storm.

In closing, I feel the page to a new chapter being turned in my life and as I take this initial lesson to heart, I will begin reflecting on the ones to come…