Friday, September 12, 2014

GI Kojo Goes to Church

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It was a day to celebrate at Wesley Methodist Church of the Chiraa Circuit. The Foundation Stone Laying Ceremony was going to take place, and it was a day to try to raise the funds to complete building the church.
As we got closer to the church on Sunday 31 August 2014, we noticed a few guys in army uniforms with AK 47s in their hands. The closer we got to the church, the more military we saw among the trees, by the church building…all over the place. Hmmm…why was GI Kojo at church today?
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The answer to this question was very simple, His Excellency, Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, the vice president of Ghana was going to worship with us this day. As we waited for everyone to arrive and the service to start, we heard sirens…everyone got up and looked out towards the street. The motorcycle motorcade had arrived, with the drivers showing off their unique driving abilities…next came the VIPs, including the vice president. All the GI Kojos were alert, watchful, doing their job .
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The local chiefs and political VIPs attended as well as plenty of “big men.” Worship started – it was a wonderful service. The Foundation Stone was unveiled and dedicated, with plenty of people in attendance. Money was raised. And, maybe when the church is complete, the VP will come again…along with more GI Kojos!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

There She Stands

When the night seems to say
All hope is lost, gone away.
But I know I’m not alone.
By the light, she stands.

There she waves, faithful friend,
Shimmering stars, westward wind,
Show the way, carry me,
To the place she stands.

Just when you think it might be over,
Just when you think the fight is gone,
Someone will risk his life to raise her,
There she stands.

There she flies, clear blue skies,
Reminds us with red of those that died,
Washed in white by the brave,
In their strength, she stands.

When evil calls itself a martyr,
When all your hopes come crashing down,
Someone will pull her from the rubble,
There she stands.

We’ve seen her flying torn and tattered.
We’ve seen her stand the test of time.
And, through it all the fools have fallen.
There she stands.

By the dawn’s early light,
And through the fight…
She stands.

~There She Stands by Michael W. Smith


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

God Be with You 'Til We Meet Again

The day was Sunday, 17 August 2014. It was around noontime. Worship service was just about over. Announcements were being made. All was well...until I made the final announcement of the day. "I love Kalsagri. You have become my family...You have noticed that I have been sitting more frequently..." It was the beginning of a very difficult announcement. I was traveling back to America for surgery, for a knee replacement. I would be gone for 5 1/2 months...
As I spoke, I watched the faces of the congregation. The surprise. The shock. The love. The concern. And, something stirred within me. It was the same thing I experienced in August 1996, when I was leaving a camp in Russia. An 8 year old girl, an orphan was sobbing on my shoulder...and I on hers. I didn't intend to "get involved" with anyone then, just like I didn't realize how interwoven my life was with the lives of the people of Kalsagri. I was in pain (still am). I knew I needed surgery. But, oh, how hard it was to let people know I was leaving.

I was able to worship with the Kalsagri church one more time before I left Ghana. The congregation prayed for me with such faith and such love and such could God not answer their prayers? I miss them. And, my prayer is, "God be with you until we meet again."