Two weeks from today we will be in Ghana. That’s a big deal on more levels than I could ever blog. Twenty years since I’ve been there last. Asia has been our focus for many years now yet here we are about to go back where our overseas ministry started in the first place. I still remember how it was…like it was just yesterday. The excitement of it all. What it felt like to set my feet on the African continent. It was there I found my watershed and could never look back or settle for my little life here in the place I’d known all my life. Now I make this circle complete not just alone but brining my family with me. My dear Joseph said one day I would return with my “Precious” and just as he said so prophetically here I am about to return there with Lovely. Will it open the eyes of my children as it did me? I believe so. The word I’ve had from childhood is that my ministry would be greater than my parents but that must be passed on to my children now…they will surpass me and I’d have it no other way.
There have been some nasty flu symptoms we’ve now fought through this week. I am just glad it didn’t come up right before we got on the plane. I’ve traveled overseas while deathly ill and I have no desire to do that ever again. There are also some visa issues with the people who are coming with us from Canada that need to be ironed out…prayer…oh how I value the power of prayer! I feel that my heart is already in Africa, things here seem less real then they did even a day ago…I know this will change our lives forever.
Still we're not gone yet so I must keep my head together. I have some pictures left to share of our Yellowstone trip still so let’s get to that. We stayed in a cabin not far from a burned out forest it was hard to tell how far this fire had burned until we drove to check it out. I was shocked at the destruction and again the theme of life refusing to give up I saw very little life at first of the animal persuasion . there was actually a solemn feeling here . I could feel that it was hallowed ground somehow. The further we followed the road up the mountain we could see that whole mountainsides had been devastated in this fire. My lens seemed drawn to the contrast of green grass and blackened tree trunks Life and death was everywhere but as we went up higher and higher the life seemed to become stronger . Here the elk Thistle was everywhere unlike the Stillwater where we were before were it was not as common. Higher still we went and then I spotted one of my favorites! Indian Paintbrush . It felt like seeing an old familiar friend…okay more than one old friend perhaps . Fact is there were many friends all standing defiantly where death hand reigned not that long ago…life refused to give up ! The barren peaks stood as silent witness to the circle of life Scarred trucks stood as a silent army…holding their breath in hope Maybe this silent dead army was wondering if it would live again too I believe it will live again though death’s obsidian armor be strong and though the scars run deep…life will break through again like the blue sky finally exalting in it’s freedom from the grey dawn . With this testimony we began to descend once again. Realizing that death’s roar would be drowned out in the triumph of life . somehow the dark sadness couldn’t hold it’s sway as it did on the way up the mountain though it was more perspective that had changed than anything else . This hope began to change to a nervous excitement. We noticed many birds now and suddenly there was a large muledeer doe in the forest who sprinted off quickly. Then lopping down the road came a large black bear! Defying the reports of low berry count and many unhealthy specimens. This bear was fat and healthy. He or she looked at me curiously as I called to it. The bear was running but stopped and looked at who was calling out . The bear continued up the hill some but turned again as I spoke . I have never been more thrilled in my life! It’s not just the bear…we saw more this year than ever before however this was God. I knew it, I’ve heard the still small voice before. This whole trip was a lesson and this was the black bear cherry on top! We watched as the bear departed. the bear may depart…but God and this lesson will not.