Some things that I'm looking forward to:
-Practicing speaking some French
-Being submerged in a culture of physical poverty, yet genuine happiness
-Drinking some coca-cola made from real sugar, not corn syrup!
-Getting to hold another sweet, coffee-bean colored kid with a big, BIG smile! :)
-Just sweating and studying God's word- (the abundant life!)
-Experiencing healthcare in a third world country-Planting and watering seeds!
Here's a general preview of my schedule:
June 14th (11:40 a.m.)- Fly out of Alexandria
June 15th (7:45 p.m.)- Arrive in Burkina Faso
June 15th-June 30th- Ministry in Ouagadougou. I'll be working with the children's program of Grace Baptist Church. Everyday they feed and minister to a lot of sweet kids in the nonzoned area of Ouaga. I'll be singing songs with them in Moore (the most spoken local language) as well as some in French. We'll also be playing games with them and visiting with their families when I bring them home in the afternoons!
July 1- July 16th: Nalerigu, Ghana (and the surrounding villages) with the missionaries of the Baptist Medical Centre. I'll be working with the youth, discipiling them and teaching evangelism!
July 18th (9:00 p.m.)- arrive back in Alexandria, Louisiana!
Basic Information: Ouagadougou is a third world city of over 1 million people. Villages in southeastern Burkina and northern Ghana are inhabited by subsistence farmers of millet and peanuts. Over 50% of the Bissa people practice Islam. Less than 2% are evangelical Christians. All religions are greatly influenced by African Animism.
While in Burkina I'll be staying in the zoned area of Ouaga and commute daily to the ministry site. In Ghana, I'll be living with a Bissa family that has youth in their courtyards. I’ll be working on some discipleship with these youth and going out with them door to door to do prayer walking and evangelism. Regardless of location, I'm praying for open doors to share the gospel!
The Shafto family has graciously allowed 6 summer missionsaries to come to their area! (Willis, Benjamin, Garrett, John Paul, Rochelle, and myself!) We will not be staying together, but our paths will hopefully cross very frequently.
- For the Bissa people. God will prepare the hearts of the poeple I encounter. Relationships. Encouragement for the believers. The church will be bold and obedient in reaching out. Lost will be open to hearing about Jesus and accept Him as Lord.
- That we will be able to proclaim the gospel in a clear and culturally sensitive manner and lead Bissa Christians to spiritual maturity, helping them to discover and employ their spiritual gifts
- For me. Boldness. Humility. Flexibility. Language and cultural barriers. Protection from lonliness (those of you who know me well, know that I'm an extrovert!)
- Mostly: God will glorify Himself through this!
"The harvest is truly plentiful, but the laborers are few, therefore PRAY..." (Matthew 9:37,38)
This is a huge step of faith for me. I'm learning to trust. With my life. The kind of trust that makes fears go away. I'm learning to be completely dependent, and lean not on my own understanding. I'm praying for the PEACE of Christ that transcends understanding. I'm praying for joy. The unchanging, unending joy that comes from knowing that our Savior is seated on His throne.
...God's vision is so much bigger than mine.
Trusting in His STRONG love...
Writing to you in anticipation, uncertainity, and excitement... and off I go!