Ghana #3: Reflections from Ghana

by José Pezini, Coordinator for Portuguese Language Ministries, The Outreach Foundation

And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. John 17:3

My mind wanders from one thing to another. Not because of questions, but rather reflection about everything I have seen and felt in the midst of this people.

Maybe this verse makes more sense today than it did before. The people we saw today have absolutely no material wealth at all. They live in very simple homes, including the pastor. In their homes there is no furniture, no electronics etc. They have no cars or possessions that we would consider essential. The lunch they graciously shared with us did not come from the supermarket, but from something harvested right there.

The table was not ornate. We were fed with cassava and chicken which was offered to us with great joy.

However, they have shown that there is something that is common to us all. The eternal life they have received, just like us. They show joy in worship, generosity in contributing. I confess I was impressed by everything I saw. I saw the prayer of Jesus being answered in the life of this suffering but joyful people, because one day we will all be together face to face with Jesus glorifying him for what has been given to us.

I can say that what I saw today has marked my life forever.

My prayer was: "Lord have mercy on me, draw me close to you and teach me what it really means to be a true Christian."

by Mario Góis, Pastor at 1st Presbyterian Church SJ do Rio Preto, Sao Paulo State. Brazil

I am asking on their behalf; I am not asking on behalf of the world, but on behalf of those whom you gave me, because they are yours. John 17:9

Where is the evil for our brothers and sisters here in northern Ghana? The environment in which they live is filled with possible enemies: from viruses and illness, menacing animals, lack of pure water, cultural conflicts, religious tensions, divisions within the Christian church, poverty, spiritual oppression, etc. But this is their world, the one to which they were born, and that they love. This is the place that gives them identity. They are Ghanaians of the north. Therefore, we pray to the Father to guard them from evil. They will not stop living here, so keep them, o God, from the real evil that manifests itself in this region in various ways. I ask you humbly and with sincere desire: Please keep them!