Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Kenya’ Category

Just a heads-up to everyone,

I just published three new books and they are on Amazon ready to ship. I thought some of you might want to get some copies in printed form instead of the intermittent email.

1.     Revival Campaigns in Africa – 2019

Revival Campaign 2019-front coverThis is about the four mission trips I took this year – Nigeria, Liberia, Uganda, and the Congo. I wrote several articles while I was in each country I put this book together primarily for the sponsors who had supported our work so that they could see what they had paid for. It is, however, a great book for anyone who would like to know what it is like when you are in the midst of a revival campaign.

It’s a little expensive, $12.95, but that is because it is loaded with color photographs which effectively doubles the cost.

Link on Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/1701909855

2.     Standing in the Gap: the Difference Between True and False Prophets

Gap-front coverI was asked by a friend who was meeting with many top leaders in the Church about what the difference was between real prophets of God and swarms of false prophets we see in today’s church. This is a favorite topic of mine. After sending him some preliminary articles, I decided to make a book about it. I believe this is an extremely important topic for the church today. There are two gospels out there today. False prophets, like Pied Pipers, lead us into a false sense of grace, while true prophets of God herald the way to holiness. They lead in two different directions, and whichever one we follow will determine where we end up.

Price: $4.95

Lin on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1734221305

3.     A Voice in the Wilderness – The Journey Begins

A Voice in Wilderness -front coverI have a lot of articles written – about 750. I was thinking the other day that’s twenty years worth of paper sitting in a file drawer. I decided that I needed to put it in print so I would have a legacy for my kids to know me by. This is the first installment. These are the newspaper columns from 1999. The rest will follow. There are some really great articles in there, as there will also be in the books that follow.

Price: 7.95

Link on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0999469495

Here is a link to see the whole catalog of 13 books: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=Dalen+Garris&i=stripbooks&ref=nb_sb_noss_2

Or just search Amazon under books for “Dalen Garris”.

 

Thanks for listening to me all these years. I believe we are coming to troublesome times and we will need all the exhortation and fellowship we can get.

 

Praise the Lord,

Brother Dale

Read Full Post »

Introduction

In the 1970s, God swept across California with an outpouring of the Holy Spirit like had not been seen for years. Many of the older generation who had experienced the revivals of the 40s and 50s rejoiced to see the Spirit of God moving again. Their pulpits had grown cold over the years, their altars had been abandoned, and the Church world had settled into the same religious environment that they themselves had revolted from in their generation. The excitement was gone, and church had gone back to its normal sedate self.

But here, finally, was a brand new move of God.  It didn’t come the way they expected, nor to whom they expected – God came to the Hippies, the disaffected youth who were searching for Truth in any way they could find it. But the fire of God was undeniably burning, souls were getting saved again and God was on the move.

I got saved during those early days of the Jesus Movement.  We were so full of the Spirit that nothing else mattered to us. Every night, the lost would pack the church to hear a message of the power of God unto Salvation. The Holy Spirit would descend in such an overwhelming presence that there were times that the air literally shimmered from the glory of God. Lives were immeasurably changed as souls flocked to the altar to give their lives to Jesus Christ.

Night after night, week after week, year after year, we immersed ourselves in the flow of the Holy Ghost. We fully expected that the Lord’s return was surely imminent and we would ride this great wave of revival until He came to catch us up into Heaven for Eternity.

But as things always go, the revival dissipated after about 10 years, even sooner in other places, and we were left wondering what happened. People went back to their different paths of Life, pursued forgotten careers, raised families, and settled once again for a normal, sedate Christian life.

Many of us, however, never let go of the dream that had been kindled in our hearts during those heady days of revival. We never forgot what it was like to feel that power flowing through us during services, and we never let go of the great calling that we knew had been placed on our lives.

Winding the clock ahead 30 years, I’ve watched the Church in America slide into an plastic rendition of what we once had, trying to imitate the excitement of those days with upbeat modern music, Hollywood-like presentations on stage, and “feel good” messages designed to comfort rather than convict.

I now know how those old-timers felt as they watched the holiness and glory drain out of the movement that had been ignited by the old Brush Arbor revivals. I can now understand how they must have cried out to God on worn-out knees to send another outpouring of His Holy Spirit. The glory had departed and they were left with only a slim ray of hope that it would return.

For years, I had been preaching a message of revival on radio and in newspaper columns, but in 2004, I felt the Lord lift the burden and begin to turn my attention overseas. Even though I had little to show for all those years of preaching, it was hard to abandon what I had been doing for so long. I felt as if I had been dropped off in a desert with no direction. But all the while that I was wondering if I had simply been dismissed, God was making other plans.  He sent me to Africa.

I am not an accomplished evangelist, a learned theological scholar, nor a well-trained missionary. In fact, when I first headed to Africa, I had no idea what I was doing. I had no plans, no organization supporting me, and no expectations. I just showed up, believing that the God who had sent me would also show up.

What the Kenya Diaries relates is the beginning of an incredible journey. What started as a step of blind faith has led to a resurgence of hope in the power of God. The excitement that I have felt must have been just like what those old-timers experienced back in 1970 when they saw the Jesus Movement rise up. God had turned to a new people that the established Church had never expected, so that He could bring life in the Gospel back to the Church.  He is doing the same today. America brought the Gospel to Africa, but I believe that Africa will be bringing it back to America.

As you read the Kenya Diaries, I hope you get a sense of the same excitement that I had as I followed the leading of the Spirit in a journey that led into a growing move of God. I have no doubt that this new move of God will result in a blaze of revival that will be so hot that it will be felt around the world.

The Kenya Diaries is the start of that journey.

Read Full Post »

Kisii is a small city nestled among the hills of western Kenya, not too far from Lake Victoria. I have been here twice before – once just passing through on my way to Tanzania, and the other to preach in a church here. This time I am scheduled for two days at a church that I have not been to before, but before I can leave Kisumu, another pastor in Kisii has been pleading for me to come to his church.

This happens a lot. They are hungry – no, starving – for revival! We in America do not do not understand the depth of this hunger. We are more like the Church of Laodicea in our satisfied complacency.

This pastor has begged, pled, and entreated my host, Bishop Kibedi, to please squeeze them in somehow. But the only free day is the day off spent traveling to Kisii. That means hurry up and drive for 2 hours to Kisii, find a hotel somewhere and check in, figure out where his church is, and get there by 10 am. [pant, pant]. Uh, I don’t think so.

But he pleads that the people will wait no matter how long it takes me to get there. How do you refuse a request like that?

As it turns out, when I get there it is a family church with a dozen members and a very young pastor who doesn’t know what to do. There is no “60 people and many pastors”, neither is it the 20 minute drive from Kisii like I was told. But hey, this is Africa and everything is fluid here. Hakuna Matata, “no worries”. Or as they are so fond of saying, “doan warry”. There is no “hurry” in Africa.

But this is what I do – go to the places no one else will go to minister to those who have been overlooked or dismissed because it is not “cost effective” to spend the time and money to reach them. I’ve been doing it for twelve years and one thing I have noticed is that when you reach down to minister to the “foolish things of the world”, God always shows up. I guess that’s just the way He is. He loves little children, widows and orphans, lost causes, the weak and helpless, and little people. It is what He does.

The pastor from the main church that I am preaching in the next day is impressed. He realizes that the need is great for seasoned men and women of God to raise up these young pastors so that the flocks can be fed with the Word of God. As it is, even in the bigger churches, few people read the Bible. Some do, but most do not, so it is a small wonder that they are starving.

These last couple days in this last church are exhilarating. Maybe because the call to get home is so close that everything is ramped up for me. Maybe it’s because I am giving one last great effort to ring the bell for revival before I make my final curtain call.

Whatever it is, the electricity runs wild. The people in this last church I am in not only “get it”, but they have caught the fire and are already organizing the church to reading and prayer so they can be on fire when they head out into the streets to bring in the lost. I have told them the formula for revival and that once the Lord sees their faithfulness, He will begin to move.

They are not waiting; they are already on the march.

Subscribe!

Read Full Post »

Mornings in Kisumu are fresh and clean in spite of all the dirt that is in the city streets that seems to rise out of the ground during the rush and hubbub of the day. In the early morning, the sidewalk vendors are staking out their sidewalk territories and getting ready for the business of the day as the city slowly rises out of her slumber of the night. I love this time in the morning.

I have just spent the last two days with a very small band of pastors in what seems to be an abandoned schoolroom on the outskirts of the city. The roads that lead to the meeting place have become mud holes and impassible lakes after the all-night rain we just had. We had to forego a couple of the roads because the water was too deep. As it was, I plowed through a couple of 20-foot wide puddles that were up to the axles, hoping and praying that I would not get stuck. This is the rainy season, so this is no surprise for me.

Less than a dozen pastors have shown up to hear the message that I have brought them. My friend who is organizing these meetings for me is developing a network of churches across Kenya and these pastors are part of it. Although there’s only a few of them, if I can plant a seed deep enough in their hearts and light a fire of inspiration that they will take back to their churches, then it will be worth plowing through the mud. God knows what He is doing, even if He doesn’t let the rest of us in on it.

At the end of two days of meetings, they are so excited that they are already planning for a great big conference for me next year. I get this same response from every place that I minister at. Everybody is always so lit up from the message that they all want me to come back the next year. I always I tell them that, no, I am not coming back. If I have to come back, then I didn’t do my job right the first time and what good would it do to tell them the same message again? If I did do my job right, then they don’t need me to come back.

Seriously, though, I don’t think I’ll be back. I can feel the passion and intensity of the burden slipping from me. All I want to do is go home.

But I have one more city to visit. Kisii is a small city a couple hours away and I have three days of meetings there at two different churches. After almost two months out here, I’m almost done.

As I am pulling out of Kisumu in the early morning and I soak up the freshness of the air that has come after the rain last night, I am reminded that we are encouraged to cast our bread upon the waters and it will come back to us. I have done that here. True, the water here may be muddy, but I have cast my bread out there nonetheless.

Someday, who knows when, it will come back to me in the form of churches revived and souls saved. That will make it all worthwhile.

“Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days.”
(Ecclesiastes 11:1)

Subscribe to this blog

Read Full Post »

Ahhhhhh. Three days off! One to travel from Kitale to Kisumu, and two days to do absolutely nothing! I feel like a rich man with time to squander however I want.

Kitale was the same experience as so many other places. Hungry for God to do something special in their lives, they come expecting a miracle. Because I am not like all the other American preachers, they get something they didn’t expect, but once they taste it, they want more.

They expected a soft message of peace and blessings – which is always nice to hear – but they got one of repentance and price, and they recognize the difference. I have found that their understanding of scripture and of the ways of the Spirit are often more sophisticated than we in the West expect. They get the difference between the old fashioned gospel from 50 years ago and the modern gospel they are hearing from us now – as evidenced by their exuberant “amens” when I hit certain points.

They know the truth; they just need someone to inspire them, and only the Holy Ghost can do that. He is the One they are waiting for. Once the fire is lit, however, get out of the way! It is like standing in a field of wheat that is so dry it has turned white and brittle, striking a match, and then dropping it into the wheat. The results are always explosive.

That is what I am experiencing out here. I am getting phone calls and messages from the places I have just been to over the last month or so telling me that the fire is still burning and that souls getting saved. Nothing unusual about that; the message works. Always has.

As I was leaving Kitale after three days of meetings, I stopped at the Challenge Farm, an orphanage run by Cheri Thompson, an American woman who came out here, fell in love with the kids, and never left. She has turned a dream into a sprawling reality. There are hundreds of kids running all over the place, smiling, playing, studying, and growing up as strong, productive Christians. This woman has accomplished something incredible.

As for me right now, I am trying to turn off all the switches and just coast. My batteries are run dry and my spark of inspiration is dead. I need to just shut it off for a while until I can catch up to myself again. I hardly come out of the room. I’ve already seen Kisumu so what is there to see? I’ve been to enough restaurants in my time and seen enough sights, so leave me alone. I’m fine right here. Is this what it is like to get old?

I have heard from the lady pastor at the church I will be going to tomorrow. They are praying. What else can you say? They are praying. God, she says, is faithful and will direct me to meet the brethren of the Lord who are patiently waiting for me. They are praying.

That’s all it takes to rekindle my fire – they are praying. They don’t know who I am, but when has that ever mattered? They are waiting for Him. And He will be there.

 

Read Full Post »

After Nakuru, I headed up to Eldoret. Eldoret is a busy city. Imagine all the noise, honking, dust, and clamor of a circus of wild animals and clowns gone wild. That would give you a picture of the downtown streets of Eldoret.

The White Castle Hotel is right in the middle of all this melee. It’s the same hotel I stayed at in 2010 when I was here last. At 16 bucks a night, you can imagine what it was like – clean and basic, but a bit Spartan in comfort. But hey, there was hot water in the shower!

Services were in a small church on the outskirts of town. Typical African church with corrugated iron roofs and walls. Somebody has made a fortune on iron sheets because they are as ubiquitous as dirt across Africa.

The pastor is asking for me to give two services today. While I am not exactly feeling frisky right now, it is hard to say no. These people, like all the others that I have ministered to, are hungry to hear about revival. It is like a dream for them that will lift them out of what they have now.

It’s not the poverty or the drab conditions of their lives; neither is it a discontent with their church – it’s the dream of reaching through the realities of this life and being able to not only touch God, but to immerse themselves in His presence. They need God. And they are looking at me to introduce them to Him in the excitement of revival.

I’m not sure how I’m supposed to think about that. I just keep pressing out this message that God has given me, over and over, place after place, meeting after meeting. No matter how many times I have worried about getting stale and repetitive, it is always new and exciting to them. I get to have the crowd in my hands for an hour each time, and watch their excitement grow as they grasp what I deliver to them.

And then we passed out the Bibles!

I asked how many have Bibles. I think there were three or four out of the whole crowd. How am I supposed to lead them into battle if they have no swords? How will this message find any traction in their hearts without the Word of God to establish them? What good is “be thou warmed and filled”, if you want them to grow into strong warriors in this battle for human souls?

One thing I’ve learned – you never have enough Bibles. I had given the pastor a case of 34 Bibles but they got sucked up immediately. So we dug into a second case, which had been earmarked for another church. Oh well. I guess I’ll have to worry about that tomorrow.

Right now we have some very hungry and insistent people to feed the Bread of Life to.

 

Read Full Post »

Where was I? Ah yes, Tsavo, where the man-eating lions were. Not to worry, they’re all gone now, replaced by progress, people, and roads. Kenya has changed dramatically in the ten years since I’ve first been here. I suppose it’s for the good, but there were some quaint cultural things that are either gone or commercialized for the western tourists.

The town I landed in is Mwatate (mmwaa-tah-tay). Pastor Evans ministered with me on my very first trip to Africa, 12 years ago. He now has his own church here and it is growing faster than any of the other churches in the area.

I can see why. To say his services are lively would be mild. And wow, can his wife Sophie sing!

From here we drove three hours to Mombasa. I have never been to the church here before. The only other time I came through Mombasa, the pastor forgot to tell his congregation that I was coming, so we had a service with 4 or 5 people and left.

But not this time. The place was packed, and half of it was with pastors from surrounding churches. Again, after two days of meetings, the excitement level was through the roof. They keep promising me that they will do everything I have taught them and will take this gospel to the entire area so that when I come back, I will see the fruit.

Actually, I hear this from every place I go. I am told that there is an anointing they feel that I bring with me when I come. I can’t feel anything; so honestly, I really don’t know what they feel. But after a few hundred times of hearing this, I believe it.

God is doing something special with these people – something you can’t see with your eyes or understand from the facts you see around you. The results keep presenting themselves every time I hear about a church I preached at that has now grown exponentially, or pastors who went into the ministry and established strong churches because they heard the message. I think God has taken me on this last final tour so I can get a small glimpse of what He is doing and catch a vision of what He is about to do.

After Mombasa, I did a Sunday service in one of the slums of Nairobi, a church I was at a decade ago. And again, we had an explosive service. The supernatural is becoming routine.

I have done about 50 meetings in about 30 days. It has finally caught up with me and knocked me out for a couple days, but now I am ready to get out of bed and tackle the last leg of this journey.

This may be my final tour. There is a feeling of urgency to press this message of Four Steps to Revival upon these people. Like Johnny Appleseed, I can only scatter the seeds; these pastors will have to take it once it has germinated and bring it to harvest. My part in this process will be done.

It occurs to me, however, that the seeds of revival that will not grow are the ones that have not been planted. That is enough to get me up and going again.

Read Full Post »