Africa Journal: Day 3 – December 29, 2008

This day was a flight day for us . . . we flew to Atlanta first, then to Paris and then finally on to Bamako . . . I did a lot of reading and journaling during the flight.  Before I get to the excerpt from my journal, I wanted to share a couple things from this day.  First, if you read back two days ago you’ll see that I prayed for for God to show me the specific reason why we didn’t get to leave when we had planned and who it was he had us to connect with that we wouldn’t have had we left when we planned … Her name was Sarah Morgan.  I sat in a aisle seat next to her on our flight to Paris . . . I remember her looking SOOO nervous as we were leaving Atlanta: fanning herself, wringing her hands, etc … and I thought this could be a LONG flight if I’m next to a super anxious flier, on top of that, I felt God prompting me to talk with her. I’m not typically comfortable striking up a spiritual conversation with somebody that I’m going to be sitting next to in a confined space for the next 9 hours, who I think might have some anxiety problems anyway … 🙂

She turned out to be okay though!  I actually got to talk to Sarah, who was originally from near Kansas City, her parents had moved to California, and she was now living and teaching English and Music in a school just outside of Paris.  She was a believer, but in our conversation, she said that she had been struggling a lot with her relationship with the Lord since she had moved overseas because church wasn’t like she had grown up, and it was hard for her to make connections.  Anyway, we had a good conversation, and I felt like I was able to encourage her in her PERSONAL walk with the Lord, and although fellowship with other believers is important, it is not the crux of your relationship with God.  We talked music, missions (she had been to Africa too on a vision trip with Wycliffe Bible Translators).  It didn’t seem like a huge life changing moment for either of us, but we did connect and I feel like I was able to encourage Sarah.  We exchanged e-mail and said we’d keep each other updated on life occasionally.  If we had left two days earlier, I wouldn’t have made that connection . . .was that God’s purpose?  I don’t know, but it ended up being an encouragement to us both.

Secondly, this is the day that both of my parents wrote in my journal.  Super cool to have the encouragement and support and prayers of my parents during this trip.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, but I’m super blessed to have the family that I have.   My dad wrote: “If one never plants a seed, then nothing ever grows.  You may never see the results of some of the seeds you plant, but know that the seed is there, and God will do the rest.”

From my journal that day:

“…Thank you for my family, for their love and support and for the example that they have set for me.

I pray that I would rely totally upon You and Your power for this trip, for today and this moment

I pray that You are drawing these people to Yourself.  I pray that if anything, You would use me to plant a seed in the lives of the Kogoro and Fulanke people that I come into contact with.  Use me Lord.  Forgive me where I have failed You in thought and deed.  I’m eternally thankful for You and Your sacrifice and ask that You continue to reveal Yourself and Your love to me in great ways.  Help me to abandon every earthly desire so that I can focus on You and serving the people You have called me to.

You are the Most High God, more powerful than the power of nature, more powerful than death, more powerful than any other god, and it is You I trust, it is You that lives in me!  The fullness of the Deity of God was placed in Christ, and Christ lives in me!  I claim that power tonight and trust that You WILL complete the work You started in me …”

As I’ve read back through this journal the last several days, it is taking me on a whole new journey.  I’m honestly getting frustrated with myself for not having the same drive and passion and fervor here and now that I had then.  Why does it take a mission trip half way around the world for me to call on Jesus with such conviction and longing?  I love the passage in Colossians that I referred to at the end of this journal entry.  What a great thought to leave you with today:

Colossians 1:19 “For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in Him” (Jesus)

Colossians 2:9-10  “For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ.”




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