Shake Hands with the Devil

In 1994, one million Rwandans were killed in the span of three months. Killed not by a bomb or weapon of mass destruction, but by a million weapons of small destruction, garden tools mostly. Killed not so much by an army, like the genocide of WW2, but neighbor turning against neighbor. This is a hard fact to ignore, even fourteen years after the Rwandan genocide, as you walk the streets of Kigali. You find yourself mentally subtracting fourteen years from the age of each person you meet, thinking of the atrocities they witnessed as a child, or worse, the atrocities they may have committed. For a country with a population of only eight million, the death of one million at the hands of their neighbors means nobody was unaffected. Everybody who survived lost somebody, if not their whole family. Many personally witnessed rape or murder at close range. Most had their lives threatened. And fourteen years later you can still feel the tension and pain people are carrying. One Rwandese youth I visited with after church told me “Nobody trusts each other. They may smile when they meet you, but as soon as you go they stop smiling and consider you their enemy.” He had fled Rwanda as a four year old, grew up in Kenya, and recently returned to Rwanda. He told me how he wished he could go back to Kenya, where people were friendly and he had friends. “I have no friends here. You can’t have friends without trust.” Ethnic and tribal tensions But even Kenya is not exempt from ethnic hatred. Back in January this...

Close encounters with animals

I just got back from a week in Rwanda (more on that later!), during which I missed Robbie’s birthday. Knowing this ahead of time, Robbie and I decided to do a special weekend camp-out beforehand, just the two of us. To talk about guy stuff like turning 10 and responsibility and God and girls and being a man. We called it our “manventure”, and had no idea how appropriate that term would be. Just the previous weekend I had gone camping with Tim and a bunch of other AIM guys at the annual men’s camping retreat. The same retreat that I wrote about a year ago in “Camping with Hippos“. So, I thought I had the whole “camping in the wilds of Africa” all figured out. We were going to go to Hell’s Gate National Park, near lake Naivasha, and camp out in the wild, do some hiking, rock climbing, cook our food over a fire, and have a memorable weekend that would hopefully stay in our memories forever. Boy, will it ever! Robbie and I arrived at Hell’s Gate (about a 1.5 hour drive from Nairobi) around 3pm as the rain clouds were starting to form. As we paid our admission and entered the park and found our campsite, it was starting to rain. The campsite was up a steep, volcanic silt road, situated on the edge of a cliff overlooking much of the park. From there we could see Fischer’s tower, a two hundred foot high lava plug left over from a volcano. We could also hear steam vents several miles away, and were literally surrounded by...

Our 1st Year

The summary of our first year in Africa, what it’s like to pack up and move across the world, orientation, culture shock, what it’s like to live here, and the ministries we are involved...

AIMsites

Welcome to our new hosting service, AIMsites. I’ve been working on developing AIMsites for the past 6 months, as part of my work with the On-Field Media team. Through this site we’re trying to link missionaries together, and get the stories of what God is doing in Africa spread across the internet a little better. So I (and Ted Barnett jr and Joe Morgan) built this hosting service for AIM missionaries. I moved our family’s site here because I wanted our content to be indexed and organized alongside similar ministries throughout Africa. Please enjoy the new site, be sure to go to the home page and see what is happening throughout Africa and...
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