Flashback to Ghana

Mission trip to Ghana

While blogging is new for me, writing is not.  In 2011, I took my first mission trip.  I traveled with a group to Aflao, Ghana.  I looked through some notes today to prepare for a Mrs Disciple 101 post and found some great memories of God’s greatness and faithfulness.  I am going back and inviting you along for the journey!

August 2, 2011

I returned from Ghana yesterday after 8 days in-country + 2 days of travel.  I am changed, no doubt.  But it is hard to identify specific transformation.  I know that my world view is forever changed.  Stories and images of people in third world countries will be real to me, not just faces of sorrow.  My faith is forever changed.  I have experienced 10+ days of absolute reliance on God for my health, my safety, care for my baby girls, and the ability to do the work He called me to do.  He was faithful beyond my faith.  My heart is forever changed, for in it I will carry the people of Aflao, Ghana wherever I go.

Before I left for Ghana, I spent a lot of time preparing for the work ahead.  I planned to partner with Rena Strange for a 4 day pastors’ wives conference.  The thought of bringing the Word to 50+ women of faith was humbling in itself.  I felt absolutely inadequate (and I am).  God was faithful to answer my fearful cries for help before we ever left.  He sent me to John 14:26-27.

But, the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to you remembrance all that I have said to you.  Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.  Not as the world gives do I leave you.  Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

Peace.  Peace that passes all understanding.  He was faithful to keep His promise.  Less than an hour before our departure, my partner and her husband were in a car accident and could not travel with us.  I faced the conference alone, but not really alone.  I had the Helper.  He brought peace–assurance that this was all part of His plan.

Teaching in GhanaThroughout the four days of the conference, the Holy Spirit was present.  He was faithful to “bring to [my] remembrance all that” I had studied.  Not just what I studied in the weeks leading up to our trip, but also things I had learned through my years of study.  I take no credit for the words that came out of my mouth; only those words that faltered were my own.  I depleted my prepared resources by the middle of the 3rd day, knowing I had about 6 hours of teaching to complete.  “Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”  I used my “just in case” resources to finish the race.

Mission to GhanaThe final day of the conference, I delivered a word I never planned to speak.  I shared truth from God’s word using The Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets Them Free.  This word met their need far greater than anything I had prepared to share.  As I moved through the lies that the Enemy speaks into our heart and the contrasting Truth that God speaks to us through His Word, the women soaked it in as a dry ground is refreshed through a summer shower.  Through the power of the Holy Spirit, chains were broken.  We were set free from bondage.  Freedom filled our souls like air into gasping lungs.

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.  So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.  You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.  John 8:32, 36, Romans 6:18

My God was faithful to supply all of our needs according to His riches in glory (Philippians 4:19).  I could not, in my humanity, prepare enough for what lay ahead.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”  Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.  For when I am weak, then I am strong.  2 Corinthians 12:9-10

Mama MaryI am thankful that I traveled to Ghana in humility and weakness.  In my greatest hours of need, I could not depend on my own strength and ability.  I had no cause for pride or confidence.  My only hope was in the strength of the Almighty God.  He was faithful beyond my faith.  He used my weakness to glorify His own name.  And my faith grew.

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