If you get a chance, see Mully. The true story of a man who was abandoned by his family, rejected by his village, homeless, a beggar and sometimes thief who wanted to commit suicide…but who, after accepting Jesus (because one young man invited him to prayer and fellowship), became one of the wealthiest men in Kenya. That, however, is not his story. The real story is how he gave up his businesses and his money in obedience to the Lord and instead began to care for orphans, taking them into his home.
It’s one thing for a man to give up his money and privilege in pursuit of Jesus—that alone is unusual and arresting, but it’s another when he does so at the cost of his own family. The documentary includes his children and his wife who are very candid about their less than supportive responses to their dad’s madness. He wasn’t just changing his life, he was changing ALL their lives, and they didn’t like it. God hadn’t called them to do those things, as far they knew anyway. Why couldn’t Mully follow God and leave them out of it? Provide for their lives as normal and only give to the street kids from his personal surplus?
He took in child after child. Hundreds of children, actually. “I never said there’s no space for a child,” He explains. He would scan the streets at night, find the orphans and take them into his home telling them “these are your brothers and sisters now,” and to call him “Dad.”
Now all of his own children work with him and are fully on board. It took a while for them to get it, to catch the vision, and for God to work on their hearts, but it happened. Such a beautiful message—that our job is to follow Jesus, even at times when our loved ones don’t understand and aren’t on board. If we are obedient to God, He will deal with the rest…but we may have to wait a while.
There were two illustrations, if you will, that were particularly powerful.
Water from a Rock
Mully had moved his family (in the hundreds) out to some land in the country. When they got there there was no structure, no water, nothing but land. The kids built it all by hand. But the water—they had to truck in water EVERY day from miles away. This was sufficient (if inconvenient) until the drought hit. They needed water and there was none to be had. Much like the Israelites in Numbers 20, they began to complain about their need for water. They’d already dug for water many times and found nothing, but Mully had a vision that there was water on the land, and exactly where to dig for it. The boys were less than enthusiastic, but they dug … until they hit a rock.
Boys: We’ve dug. [It’s] your vision. And we have a rock. So, what do we do?
Mully: I was shown a vision and there’s water there, so keep digging.
Boys: We hit the rock and it was an explosion [of water].
Just like Moses. God told him to “hit the rock” with his staff and “tell the rock…to yield its water” (Numbers 20:8). We think rocks don’t have water, but notice the language! God didn’t say he’d miraculously put water in it, or water would come from under it…he said tell the rock to yield “its” water. That amazes me. There is no situation so hard or so dry in our lives that God can’t tell it to yield its water for us. With Mully as with Abraham, the rock’s water was enough for a nation, not just a person. Abundance. They’ve never lacked for water since. But here’s the thing—Mully trusted the vision God gave him. He trusted in the faithfulness and goodness and power of God and he acted. He dug. He dug even when it seemed impossible. The boys lost hope when they hit a rock. Mully pressed on. There’s a lesson in that for you and me!
Changing the Climate
“In Kenya,” Mully said, “everyone, even the government, depends on donations from the Western world. We have got to change that… A beggar has no choices. … [So,] How can we build a project that will be self-sustaining?” He started hydroponics and is growing enough food that they were able to feed an additional 4,000 refugee children every single day for a year. Amazing! Along with that, they have been growing trees.
He began to realize that he could plant tree to change their climate. Part of Kenya’s problem was the climate. They needed more rain. Did you know you can CHANGE THE CLIMATE??? I didn’t know that. Apparently, you can. More trees equal a micro climate and that can mean more rainfall, in that micro-climate. He has created their own rainforest of sorts!
Here is the thing—we can change the climate around us. We are not victims of it, but creators—if we choose to be. When we go in to a hard, dry, hot place (I’m talking metaphorically here… but you’ve been in places like that—where tempers are hot and hearts are hard and there’s no love raining down)—we can plant trees. We can plant seeds of love that begin to grow. We can plant so that we reap a harvest of righteousness. Those are things which change a climate.
Mully is changing the literal climate, but he’s also changing the spiritual, emotional and political climate of Kenya. The church at one time kicked him out because they saw those kids as bad people. Now they welcome Mully and all his children. The religious climate changed. Educationally, things are changing. The schools at Mully family facilities are the best in the nation. And they are raising up a generation of kids who will impact the nation, changing the politics and education and legal systems, etc. In the last 27 years, over 12,000 kids have been successfully reinstated. Once orphaned, homeless and destitute, they now have a family, a man they call Dad, and a home that provides love, education, shelter, security, Biblical training. Mully is changing the climate of Kenya, but the ripple effects will be a blessing to the world.
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