Monday, April 9, 2012

Gratitude from Ghana…





We flew out of Portland, Oregon at seven a.m. Tuesday morning and arrived in Accra, Ghana at

11:30 a.m. Wednesday morning Ghana time.  The weariness combined with the reality of the poverty and filth around me made we want to turn right back around and go back to my comfortable American life.  But instead, I squeezed into a van stuffed with luggage and others heading to the church conference my husband and I were speaking at in Kumasi, Ghana.  What  would have been about a two hour drive in the states,  in Ghana took 7 hours.  The roads are terrible and the only rule of the road seems to be “every driver do what is right in your own eyes and honk your horn a lot.”  Part of me was afraid I was going to die and part of me was so overtired and overwhelmed that I didn’t care if I did!

We finally arrived at the retreat center where my daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren are living while in Ghana, and where the speakers and some of the national pastors for the conference were staying.  I don’t remember much but hugging my grandbabies and falling into bed.

The next day the conference began.  I found out that I was preaching the Good Friday night service to the whole conference, as well as teaching workshops on Friday and Saturday afternoon to the women.  My husband preached to the whole conference on Saturday and taught classes in the afternoon for the national pastors.  (May I just say that preaching God’s Word,  (with an interpreter),  to a church full of Ghanaians is about at the top of great moments in ministry in my life.)

The conference ended this morning with a 5 1/2 hour long Easter service.  The church was full to overflowing and very hot and muggy,  yet it was the most memorable celebration of Christ’s resurrection that I’ve ever been in.  And me,  I’ve had a little personal resurrection of my own. God and Ghana have changed my heart.



I continue to gather gratitude…


3 gifts round-

-a sunny day after a record rainfall month in Portland

-Papa and blonde, blue-eyed granddaughter playing ball in the backyard

-going out for pizza with oldest daughter, son-in-law and our granddaughters before leaving for Ghana early the next morning

3 gifts white-

-bright moon, planets, stars on a clear night

-my last hot water bubbly bath before two weeks of cold showers, (if the well isn’t dry), in Ghana

-minty gum on a long, long flight

3 gifts surprisingly found-

-a missing object I prayed to find and found moments later

-going through customs was easier than expected, even with extra baggage, (supplies for our daughter in Ghana)

-hardly any turbulence after the pilot announcing we were heading into a very bumpy ride

3 gifts in His Word-

-Isaiah 53, (I can’t read it without wanting to break into singing Handel’s Messiah Smile)

-1 John 3:1( “Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us that we should be called the children of God!)

-Jude 21 “Keep yourself in the love of God.”

3 gifts @

-11am-running water

-2pm sitting on the porch of the retreat center, visiting with my daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren



-6pm-fresh Ghanaian pineapple with dinner

3 gifts nailed together-

-our little house back home,  (seems like a mansion now)

-our bed in Ghana, four inches of latex foam in a bed frame covered with a thin pink sheet

-the wooden pews in the church filled with Ghanaians

3 gifts waited for-

-our grandchildren-all four longed for miracles

-our daughter now in Ghana, where she has wanted to minister for so long

-Jesus, our hearts cry out, “Come Quickly, Lord Jesus!”

3 gifts rising up-

-maybe more preaching/teaching open doors in other nations

-our two grandchildren helping to teach the Ghanaian children during the conference

-young Ghanaians training for ministry





Gratefully yours,



  1. What an exciting report from the field. May God bless you for obeying His call and may your labors be blessed with abundant fruit.

  2. Oh, my dear friend -
    I have prayed for you SO MUCH through these days! My eyes are filled with tears as I read your words and hear your heart. How I wish I could have stowed away with you! God is doing something very precious in your heart. Can't wait to sit and share when you return home again.

  3. Beautiful - I find Africa so beautiful and humbling. The joy and love I see in believers who have so much less and are so incredibly thankful truly pierces my heart. Blessings to you on the remainder of your journey and return!

  4. Praying so much for you! Beautiful words, beautiful images.

  5. In a small way, you have taken me there with you in this post. Maybe it's because they are God's people, but those in your pictures look particularly beautiful to me.

  6. My friend who has been to Africa several times has told me often that everyone should worship in an African church once in their life. Blessings on your journey.

  7. Blessings on this journey, my friend. The pictures are wonderful. Praise God for his blessings in this place. I need to rekindle this kind of joy for God's word. :)

  8. It certainly gives a new perspective to what "spiritual hunger" looks like, doesn't it? We think we're hungry; but would we walk barefoot for miles in over 100 degree temperatures, worship in song for 2 hours, listen to sermons for 2 or 3 hours and still be begging for more? Sorry Sis, you're never going to be able to see the American church through the same eyes as you did pre-Africa.

  9. Oh Pastor Elizabeth! I am so blessed with your report. I almost cried when I saw precious Malachi dancing with the men. As I said to your dtr. Katie, when she came back from Cyprus, Israel, "you will never be the same". You two won't either. May we at True Life Church catch the mantle when you return, for the Healing Of The Nations has begun, in the hearts of His people. Love and miss you MUCH, Susan

  10. So wonderful to read your beautiful words!! Been praying for you and yours!! You have been touched in a mighty special way by the Hand of God and you will never never be the same!!! Praying for your I know it will be one of the most difficult things you will have to do!! Trusting Our Father!!! Sharon :)


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