Ghana #4: We Are One
by Rafael Guedes, Worship and Small Group leader. Independent Presbyterian Church of Presidente Prudente, São Paulo State.
During our journey throughout Ghana we have been meditating on Jesus’ prayer in John chapter 17. The verse that spoke most to my heart on this day was, "I speak these things in the world so that they may have my joy made complete in themselves" (John 17:13). During the time I have been in Christ, I had never had the privilege of seeing joy as pure and genuine as I have seen in the life of the brothers in this place. Joy that I could not only see, but also feel! An incredible feeling that began at 7am during the praises sung by young people who in the early hours of the day displayed smiles that penetrate right into our souls. It was impossible not to surrender in worship to God and the presence of the Holy Spirit in that place. Another great source of joy I felt today was to see during Bible school how these brothers are spiritually mature, convicted in faith in Jesus Christ, firm in the word of God with a strong desire to proclaim the gospel. Finally, in the rural church I saw what God really meant to say to Paul in 2 Corinthians 12:9, when he said, "My grace is sufficient for you," Jesus is enough for the brethren in that village, the grace of our Saviour causes those who materially have so little, to have absolutely everything! What is the "fullness of joy" that belongs and comes only from Jesus Christ! My prayer was: "Lord Jesus, all honor and all glory belong to you, from you also comes all joy, satisfaction and contentment, feelings that do not yet exist within me, I cry to the Lord that through His infinite mercy the same joy and satisfaction that I saw in the life of my Ghanaian brothers, that my being may shine in his image Jesus, just as the Lord is reflected in their lives, keep these brothers and sisters firm in your ways God, this is my prayer, in the name of Jesus ! Amen.
by Rev. William Ramos, Independent Presbyterian Church of Presidente Prudente, São Paulo State.
“…that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me…" John 17:21
The verses of priestly prayer reveal to us the desire of Jesus that all may be brought together in the unity that comes when we believe in the person of Christ regardless of race, language or nation. The expression "all" gives us this inclusive idea of approaching the ethnicities and it also offers the important perspective of the filiation and paternity of God. It leads us to the simple and obvious conclusion that those who relate to God as Father in the way that Jesus does, are not in the position of choosing their siblings. We all approach the family of God our Father, through Jesus Christ, who is his son and our brother. This mission in Ghana makes us realize that in spite of the more than 70 tribal languages, different customs, skin color, the most diverse cultural and historical influences, we are brought together in Jesus as brethren. Through Christ the whole world can know God as Father.
WE ARE ONE.