Mary Wambui Ngugi smiles a greeting as we approach her small, solid house surrounded by palms and banana plants. Goats are foraging in the yard. Mary looks much younger than her 74 years, maybe because of her wide smile and her vibrant clothes, the yellow dress and the bold scarf she has tied around her waist. She has four surviving children living outside the home, but they neglect her and the three orphaned grandchildren living with her: Margaret, Benson, and Mary. She lacks money sometimes for food and her health is not good, so she asks us to pray for the provision that she and the children need. She says she is waiting for the Lord, and we understand that this waiting is her perpetual state of being.
John strings up the solar lights and we are amazed at how they transform the dark rooms of Mary’s house. She is happy to receive the lights, she tells us, for three reasons: she will save money in not having to buy kerosene, her grandchildren will be able to study well in the evenings, and she will be able to spend more satisfying time with them, sharing the goodness of God.