Namikango Mission

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Trees of Namikango

Apr 2, 2014

by Ryan Hayes

At the recent annual Teachers’ Refresher Week, I met a fellow named John Katete who had been a staff worker at Namikango Mission for 20 plus years. With a good deal of excitement, John explained to us that he was around at the founding of Namikango when Roland Hayes and B. Shelburne were here. “In fact,” he continued, “I helped Roland plant the large Eucalyptus trees at the front of the Mission compound, and here I am now with two other Hayes families all these years later.”

Of course, these were gracious words which urged me to ponder the history of these trees that were planted and are still standing strong. Anyone who glimpses the grandeur of an old forest of trees witnesses the formidable endurance of creation. But these Namikango trees do more than merely point to their own endurance. In one sense, the trees are signposts that depict a deeper reality. The purpose of a signpost is not to draw attention for its own sake, but rather to re-direct attention towards a greater reality.

The Namikango trees are signposts that re-direct our attention towards the enduring faithfulness of God’s presence in this work. These signposts are reminders that it is God’s work in which we are participating. God began something before we even existed and will bring it to completion long after we are gone. Yet, these signposts reveal that God delights in using imperfect people to extend His loving kindness to any given place.

We know we are forgetful people. Thus, we would do well to look for the signposts in our lives that re-direct our hearts towards the enduring faithfulness of God’s work among us.