Reflecting on His Time in Kenya
Will Graham Talks About 'Meaningful' Nakuru Celebration
July 15, 2011 - Will Graham will never forget the Kenya welcome parade or the soccer tournament or the Operation Christmas Child distribution experience. But delivering the Gospel of Jesus Christ in the rain at an area where so much Nakuru hostility had taken place just a few years ago was the highlight of this Celebration.
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
— Romans 5:1
By Trevor Freeze
Will Graham was hanging out in his hotel room in Nakuru, Kenya, with his window open.
Nearby, local churches started to get serious about their worship.
And when Kenyans get serious about worship …
"I tell ya, Kenyans know how to worship," Will said. "I could hear 'em singing and preaching from my hotel room. It was so loud, I felt like we were in their church."
A week ago today, the Will Graham Celebration of Peace Nakuru began and despite rain showers arriving every afternoon, 14,500 people attended the three-day event, with 938 decisions made for Christ.
Back in North Carolina, Will has had a chance to reflect on his trip to Africa and how meaningful it was to both him and his wife, Kendra.
"We've been working on this event in Nakuru for about a year now," Will said. "We had some wonderful committees that have worked so hard. Often times you think you're there to give a blessing to them, but so many times it's us who get the blessings."
And both Will and Kendra, who was speaking internationally with her husband for the first time, were blessed.
"We had a wonderful time. She had a wonderful time," Will said. "She was extremely nervous. She hadn't worked with a translator very much, but she was a huge blessing to the women. She's a gifted speaker and very good communicator of the Bible."
Will did plenty of communicating God's Word himself, despite the obstacles of preaching during rain storms each afternoon at the Mama Scrape Grounds.
"The last one was a big doozie of a rainstorm," Will said. "It was raining so hard it literally took our umbrellas and bent them backward."
After initially taking shelter under a tent, where the rain was "coming in sideways," Will and his interpreter sat in the car while the 30-minute heavy storm passed.
"The choir stayed out the whole time and kept singing," he said. "People stayed on the grounds. They were doing what looked like a rain dance.
"I had to do an abbreviated message. Many people stayed. I gave an invitation and we had a wonderful response. Many people came to Christ."
There were many other highlights for Will, including a welcome-to-Nakuru parade in his honor, preaching at the end of a soccer tournament and participating in an Operation Christmas Child distribution.
But what touched him the most was preaching in the western part of Nakuru, the epicenter of where the worst civil fighting took place until 2008.
"In fact, when we went to the grounds, a lot of the houses were still destroyed, never been rebuilt," Will said. "We had this Celebration right in the middle of where all the violence took place. That was very meaningful to me and very meaningful to the local people there."
Click here to read a Celebration weekend wrap-up.
Click here to read about Kendra speaking to Keynan women.
Click here to read about Kenyans following Will on social networks.