TORI'S KENYA: Reward requires sacrifice

Victoria Terry
Tori Terry is planting a garden in Kenya. She has cleared land, burned brush and briars. Seedlings now grow in the bathroom waiting for the land to be ready.

When you think of Africa what comes to mind? Is it a third world, the exotic animals that wander freely, or is it the countless orphaned children who steal for survival? Rarely do missionaries with a purpose to create a destiny and vision of a Christian community in the lives of all creep into your imagination. As we set out Sept. 20, 2013, that day was the first day in weeks I hadn’t cried.

When you go on your first mission trip, there are two sides to everything you see. It’s a magical land of excitement and a land of horror, beauty and cruel reality, and a dream and a nightmare. A child sits in the street and can barely hold his head up from starvation. A crippled and blind man holds out his hands praying to survive on the generosity of others. No matter how much you want to help every person in need, you just can’t.

The first month I was here in Africa I wanted to scream from the bleeding wounds of a broken heart. No matter how hard I tried to be happy, the pain and anger only grew. For countless hours I would think of a way to get home and leave my family. The poison of reality slowly poured into me and never seemed to stop. As I thought of home, the people I love, my room, hot tub, flat screen TV, endless fast food restaurants, I couldn’t justify going back. I just missed my things.

Kenya, Africa, is an open land of exotic plants, wild animals and welcoming people. Because we live on a compound, no matter how beautiful the plains are, I sometimes feel imprisoned by its boarders. I wanted this to be just like the previous trips I’ve been on. The trip would last for a week, three weeks or three months, but in the end I would go home to my comfortable life. So during my final days of my normal life, my pain grew as my bed being given away, I would scream to myself, “WHY ME! Am I oblivious to the world? Does anyone care for me? Why did I ever agree to come here?”

Early one morning, even though I tried to resist the poison that seemed to fill my head and heart past the maximum, I exploded with hate and revenge. I wanted to feel like I showed someone just a taste of what I felt. I wanted someone else to experience what I felt, but even the little taste they got only caused me more pain from the looks I received. When I cried it felt like I had knives all over me and they all started spinning as I held in the shrieks.

Even now, I can only think about going home and embracing my spiritual family and never letting go. As I am only 15, there is nothing to do but pray for happiness instead of helplessness. As I share my stories and the stories to come I want people to know that now I see — in everything reward requires sacrifice, and the greater the sacrifice the greater the outcome.

Victoria Terry, her parents and sister are missionaries in Kenya, Africa. Destiny Kenya is under the pastoral leadership of Destiny Worship Center.