The problem of thinking and writing about suffering is that you begin to notice it everywhere. The last few weeks have particularly been heavy for me. It is like my ‘suffering antennas’ have been elevated and now I see it more than before. Most news on TV have elements of pain and injustice, newspapers are filled with sensational headlines screaming about worsening conditions almost everywhere, it is as if the media outlets are measured by how much emotion they can stir up from the audience.
But still the question doesn’t go away; suffering still remains one of the most difficult and complicated life questions that anyone can pose. In part 1 (which you can read here) we looked at ‘reasons for suffering’, justification for goodness and how atheism has exploited suffering to skew many to their side.
One question still needs to be answered, what is the response of Christianity to suffering? If we call our God good, just and Continue reading
image courtesy: https://www.thoughtco.com/prayer-to-my-suffering-god-700938
The problem of pain and suffering is age old. It cuts across generations, classes and cultures. It is no respecter of status or religion. Through it we come into this world and without our consent it enters into a contract with every one of us, making impromptu visits at will.
It is in the cry of a baby, in pain of injury and sickness, separation, loneliness, abuse, overwhelming regrets, embarrassment, and hopeless situations. Some are visited too often; they know it too well, like an unwelcomed guest who refused to leave. You may call it trouble, problem, pain or evil but at the end of the day the result is the same, suffering to the visited.
Suffering ‘catches up’ with you one way or another; it can make you feel like the devil himself has left hell and pitched a tent in your house. Even when you are able to overcome it, one question always remains; why is this happening to me?
Why me? What did I do to deserve this? Often without answers to these questions, we quickly find out that Continue reading
Image courtesy: beginningandend.com
About mid 2017 I was called by a family member who asked me to look into a certain preacher on TV. He wanted me to investigate the preacher and recommend whether he should take a close relative for healing prayers to the preacher’s church. The vibrant preacher is based in Nairobi and runs a 24/7 TV station with dramatic church services that would put most Naija movies to shame.
I had watched the preacher on TV before and already had an opinion about him but now that I needed to give a report, I had to delve deeper. I knew that I had to listen to a number of his full length sermons in order to understand his doctrine. Typically, he would read a bible passage, preach on it for a few minutes then manifestations begin. People in the congregation, mostly women, would begin to shout and act out. The ushers would rush and bring the person to the front and the good apostle would deliver them, after they have confessed their evil and said something great about the preacher. It is mostly about witchcraft and spells, which is basically the central theme to the church.
Like many believers, it bothers me deeply that the gospel is blatantly butchered and Continue reading
The faith one holds should be able to answer the bigger questions of life in order for it to be authentic and true. It concerns me when Christians and church leaders present a watered down gospel that only appeals to the physical and emotional psyche of the followers; a gospel that does not answer life’s most important questions and cannot be relied on when people face the true tests of life.
When we go for evangelism and we present a gospel that promises good life according to our understanding, then we misrepresent Christ and set up people for disappointment. Salvation is the most important thing that can happen to the life of an individual, it is the event that ushers them from darkness to the kingdom of light. The miracle of being raised from the dead is lesser in Continue reading
The Friday night when President Uhuru Kenyatta was announced the winner of the presidential election was a conflicting night for me. Even before the certificate was given, I heard screams and cheers of celebration on the street outside our apartment. The celebration became louder once the final announcement was made. I went to the gate to witness the celebration and it was intense.
I have never seen so many people on our street at night, most of them in red. They shouted, screamed, sang, made all kinds of noises to make sure the message was heard, that their candidate had won. Motorbikes, lorries, matatus hooted as they were driven up and down the street. I did not realize that I live in a Continue reading
Non-Christians in Australia behave better than Christians in Kenya. Those are not my words but the observation of an elderly Australian man I met recently who has lived in Kenya for the past 8 years. He has been frustrated by county and government officials and so far he has not been able to do what he came here to do. It was a coincidental meeting at a seminar in Nairobi. I sat next to him and as we talked during the break he mentioned that he lives in Kitale which is my hometown. My curiosity was aroused and I wanted to know more about him and what he does in Kitale.
So, this guy came to Kenya in 2008 with a friend who was doing some projects at Moi’s Bridge, Trans Nzoia County. He enjoyed his visit and decided he wanted to settle in Kenya. He went back home, packed his bags and a few months later he was in Kitale.
Most things were planned. He works with metal and so he wanted to use his skills to build footbridges in Continue reading
The last time the IEBC was carrying out voter registration, I was very eager to be registered. I was keen to get my voter’s card and God willing this year participate for the first time in shaping the future of this great nation. Though eligible, I could not vote in the last two elections due to geographical circumstances. During the registration I kept asking people at home, in church and at work whether they had registered as voters during that voter registration exercise.
Some had registered but others said they did not see the need to. The argued that their vote will not change anything, that it would not matter in the elections since it is just one vote, it would make no difference. Some would boldly declare that Continue reading
Getting married comes with its changes and adjustments, like having breakfast at home. I always had my breakfast in the office prior to the ‘friendly invasion’; am not a morning person and that means that I used to wake up just in time to refresh and be at the office just barely on time. Having breakfast at home means having all that is necessary for a good breakfast and honey is one of them. One morning as I enjoyed my tea and honeyed bread, I took the honey bottle and started reading the sticker. I noticed the halal logo on the sticker and wondered why it was there. I always thought halal was about meat since I have seen it mostly on restaurant posters in town and in butcheries.
Questions welled up in me; what really is halal? Is it some kind of Islamic spiritual cleansing? Have Islamic prayers been spoken Continue reading
I watched a documentary about 2 years ago on one of the international TV news channels. It was about the American juvenile justice system. Typically I don’t believe everything I watch on TV because I know it is never the whole story, it is just a story as wide as the camera lens are and as true as the reporter’s perspective and opinions. Being that as it may, this documentary just caught my attention and from what I saw Continue reading
The year is 2001. The month is March, maybe. It is another day in the life of a 14 year old in the first term of the first year of high school in a boarding school where survival is the name of the game. A little bit about my school: Chewoyet High School is located in West Pokot County, a few kilometres from Kapenguria town. The school sits on approximately 300 acres of land and boasts of a rich history and many achievements over the years. Among a long list of its alumni is a former vice president of Kenya and Continue reading