Steve VanHorn

Trip Diary 16: At Peace with 2E

Dear ITEM Friends,

I had to write the one last note because it completes the circle. In one of my first posts, I commented on how difficult it was for me to find my way around the Paris airport. If you missed it, go back and check out the post with the title: 2E OR NOT 2E.
Today I am happy to announce that 2E and I are now at peace with one another. Click READ MORE for the details.

Travel Diary 14: A False Positive

Dear ITEM Partner,
I was quite concerned when I received the result of my Covid test when it came back positive and the doctor apologized and said it was an in-house mistake and that he would write a note on the report letting airport authorities know it was a “false” positive report and that I was really negative towards Covid. I told him quite forcefully that the airport and airline authorities would not accept a hand written note on the printed lab report. And as he and I went back and forth, I woke up from my dream. Yes, I actually had that dream last night! To read the true story plus a what I learned about apologetics needs in Kenya and Africa, click on READ MORE.

Travel Diary 13: This Is A Test

Hi Everyone,
I am back in Nairobi. Two more nights here (in the same bed two nights in a row!!!!) and I head for home. ETA at Portland airport is just before 9pm Saturday. Today was moving day. Nathan and I got up in Kisumu, Kenya. Left Melvic Hotel at 9. Our flight was at 11 and we arrived in Nairobi less than an hour later. Nathan and I went in different directions when we left the airport.
It took me longer to get from the airport to the guest house than it did to fly from Kisumu to Nairobi. But on the way to the guest house, I made a stop at the South Nairobi Airport.
Click Read More to hear the reason why, to get a preview of a strategic meeting tomorrow, and to see new pictures I added today,

Travel Diary 12: 2 Tim 2:2 In Action

Dear ITEM Partner,
A verse often quoted in a discipleship context is 2 Timothy 2:2, “And what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, commit to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” It is noted that there are four generations of disciples in this one verse: Paul (the author, “me”), Timothy (the recipient, “you”), faithful men, and others. Sitting at the lunch table today was a prime example of 2 Timothy 2:2 in action. It was a gratifying moment for me

Travel Diary 11: A Fish in Water

Dear Friends and Family,
My first title for this post was “NEVER A DOUBT.” That would have been tongue in cheek. We began the day with a car that would not start. Next, the car kept stalling as we moved towards our destination. Then Google Maps took us the LONG way around and we found ourselves in a small compact on a dirt road under construction (see pictures) and I was beginning if we would escape without having to be pulled out of impossibly tight quarters. But once we did actually arrive the title changed dramatically to “A FISH IN WATER.”

Travel Diary 10: RESCUED!

Dear ITEM Partner,

A couple of days ago, Pastor Tom Ogalo, ITEM team member, asked me to preach/talk at his church. I had no sermons prepared. Nathan suggested something to encourage them in the midst of the pandemic. I was having a hard time finding the motivation to “dig in” and “just do it.” But nothing was coming to mind and I didn’t want to stand up and ad lib.

That lasted until I completed my phone call with my wife, Brenda, Sunday morning here. She was trying to give some suggestions but I just couldn’t get into it. Then God rescued me

Travel Diary 9: SURPRISE!!!

The plan in Nathan’s and my agenda was to come to Kisumu and meet with the Kenyan team. What we did not expect was to come away with an expanding vision for ITEM-Kenya. Working along side of Nathan Chiroma has been and continues to be a blessing. He sees opportunities that I do not see and that was the case again today. We are leaving Kisumu after church Sunday but I get the feeling there is much more to come in this ITEM location.

Travel Diary 8: Never Say No!

Dear Family and Friends,
Something I learned very early in my ministry involvement in Africa was that true friendship is never established until you visit the home of your African friend. So, you never turn down an invitation.
I was the first white man to visit the home of his uncle “way back when.” That was a special moment for his uncle. Another time, I had to back out of a preaching opportunity because I had to get back to town for a meeting. The pastor said, “At least come to my home for a few minutes, we’ll have fellowship, and I will let you go.” (Never say NO!) So, I went. As I sat in his living room, he went out to his cow pen, took milk from the cow, brought it into the house, poured it into a couple of glasses and we shared fresh, warm, “utterly” delicious (pun intended) milk and I was on my way.
Today we received one of those invitations at the last minute as we were leaving town. Like I said, you NEVER say NO to this kind of an invitation even if it means you may get caught in a huge Nairobi traffic jam. Click here to see how it worked out.

Travel Diary 7: Preaching 101

Dear ITEM Partner,
The big idea the first day was “an Ephesians 4 church.” Yesterday was mostly a theology of preaching. Today was the form of the sermon being preached. The truth of the matter is that preaching is easy. It really is! There are “preachers” all over the world that stand in the pulpit and preach long sermons with little or no preparation. Yes, preaching is easy. Preaching well is not. Today we spent our time talking about preaching basics: Preaching 101. And we ended the time with a discussion about why Christians confess their sins if they are already forgiven. Click here for the details.