Today our team had the opportunity to go visit the Nairobi Men’s Prison and the Langata Women’s Prison. We split up this morning with half of us going to the men’s prison to play soccer and volleyball and the other half traveling to the women’s prison to run volleyball and basketball clinics. I traveled to Kenya with the team last year, and the Nairobi Men’s prison stuck out as one of the most memorable days, so this year I was so excited to be able to visit the women’s prison. Prior to our arrival the guards had selected the women who were to participate in the clinic. We just ran through some volleyball and basketball drills for a couple of hours, and at the end gathered them all together to give them some milk and bread, and share Jesus with them. We were also able to give each one of them beaded bracelets that tells the story of salvation, and our “Kenya Habakkuk 1:5” bracelets. They were all so excited to receive them. I think what blew me away the most today was joy that thrived there. I can’t even begin to articulate what I saw and how I felt, but I will try my best. As we were playing with the women today and teaching them volleyball and basketball drills, it did not feel like we were playing with inmates; I even discovered half way through our clinic that a handful of the women were on death row. And yet they had so much joy! Towards the end of our clinic I became distracted by the young children who were watching us through the gate, so I went to talk to them. I met a woman named Judy who was told me that the women were only allowed to keep their children with them until they were 3 or 4 years old when at that point they either had to go live with a relative or were sent to an orphanage. I don’t know what it was about those children, but the thought of them spending the first 4 years of their life in a prison broke my heart. Towards the end of our visit I met a women named J.D. who I was able to talk with for a little while. I did not ask her how she ended up in Langata, but she has served 6 years and has 11 months remaining. She shared her testimony with me, and what she planned on doing once she was free. She had so much hope and joy in a situation where would be very easy to lose both, but she kept her trust and faith in the Lord, and it was evident that He is and will continue to be her source of abounding joy. Today was truly amazing. Our team might be the only visitors that some of these prisoners will see all year, and just the thought of us being able to be Jesus’ hands extended to these people was such a humbling experience. 1 Peter 1:3 says “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to His great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ…” I pray that those we visited today would continue to find joy and hope in the Lord; that they would come to a point in their lives if they haven’t already when all that matters is whether or not they know Jesus Christ.
Life in Prison