Thursday, December 9, 2010

Market Day

We left the monuments of Ghana’s first president, no more statues or fountains and it left me feeling a little like a man who had been looking out of prison being free at last.  One thing I’ve learned for sure about overseas travel:  If you are a person who has a way of doing things and expects it to always go your way you’ll never survive.  Life itself is filled with unexpected things the question is how will we react when it all happens.  I have learned to relish these challenges because I know that though it all may look orderly right now that can all change.  Peace is a valuable thing not because it happens randomly when everything goes our way but it sustains us in chaos. No place is it more necessary to hold onto your peace than at the local market in Accra.  Here you find various crafts and things that you can’t find easily elsewhere but to get these treasures you have to face very aggressive salesmen…you’d better have some Ghanaian friends to face the onslaught.  This menacing face seems foreboding don’t’ you think ?  Usually I’m a weapon fanatic when I go to such places and always it seems I end up with a dagger or two.  One thing I always notice about the Ghanaians is their hands…they have such beautiful hands.  Our son Mike has an interest in weapons too so it was no surprise when I found him posing like this in the nearby stall.  Lovely’s interests were more in accessories that could hold her camera equipment…in the end she opted for the black version of this bag.  Notice the symbol on the bag.  It means:  Gye Nyame which means:  Except God, I fear none.  Though I am interested in weapons I also like to see what else there is in the market.  I wondered what snake this skin came off of.  Our Nigerian friend Ade likes to find masks and there were plenty to choose from.  These spoons aren’t for eating but rather are symbols of prosperity.  Note the pebbles in the game on top of the drum on the left…that’s mancala…I used to know how to play that but I’ve forgotten.  I know for sure that if I had a house of my own in Ghana I’d have these sorts of things in it.  I love their crafts.  The problem often is that the wood splits when we bring it back to our dry climate.  There’s many amazing crafts that I would be interested in but I can fit only so much in the luggage.  The local salesmen can really ham it up to get a sale…just look at this guy!  Leaving the market we passed the Ghanaian version of the white house.  The heavy clouds never did drop any rain which really surprised me.  Ghana’s flag flew proudly in triplicate.  The state symbol showed two eagles togetherI thought of how God had brought our ministry (Eagle Ministries) together with my African brother who calls himself the Black Eagle.  All the weight of the trip before we left, the financial burdens etc.  fell away in the miracle of what I was seeing with my family right now.  Peace reigned even through the hard times.  The battle is always over our faith…no matter what it looks like:  financial troubles or physical problems…what ever we’re facing may be.  It still boils down to a struggle over our faith.  Peace can only be found in faith because without out it circumstance drives our feelings.  Once again I tell myself that I won’t be shaken by the circumstances I face because here again I see where God’s promise stands triumphant as it always has.


  1. Joe..u can take a wet towel and use every week to clean ur wooden items.
    we bought a 1.55 cm high statue a fisherman sitting on a pole. The wood started to split..but with the advise of a friend doing the wet towel trick it stoppped.
    tc Joe and btw i love the backsack .i would also take a blacky.

  2. The peace of God that surpasses all understanding, comes from within. It has taken me years to grasp that. Peace is the inner strength God gives me to deal with the valleys and mountains of life. Peace is the relationship I have with God and from that flows peace with the world. Like you note I can not change how the world operates but I rely on God to carry me through troubled times.

    Loved the little trip to the market, thanks.

  3. I can sure say that I agree with John where peace is written here. I have felt that peace time and again and to understand it is only by the faith we all carry as lovers of the Greatest Love of all. With the passing of my brother ther were many days of deep deep pain and in the mist of it all Great Peace at time . Overwhelming Peace. John and You Joe say it so well. Loved the market Joe and the Buildings.
    Loved Loved your Lovelys Bag. Its says it all and I want one. ha. Bless you Joe.
    I read someplace your going away again. Where , how , what . Let us all know.
    Have a peaceful day Joe. Your a blessing.
    Ive done some reading and praying and now Im going to try to put my tree up . I havent done anything yet or shopped. It will all fall into place just like it should I guess.
    and Thanks for sharing.

  4. Hi Joe,

    Yes, we all need that peace, in a life and world that is ever changing and often hurtful and confusing. Thank you for all your visits to my blog and your encouragement. May God continue to bless you and your family with His Peace

  5. I would love having a bag like Lovely has! That thing is beautiful and of course, I love what it says.

    I never fail to find the pictures absolutely awesome. Both of the sights you saw and the people. My only chance and I appreciate each one.

  6. We have Aboriginal people in here they lived most of up in north of Australia.
    And they having a very bad time of everything for many years and still not fixing their problems by our governments, only reason I don't post about it.

    The Aboriginal people are very artist in the way how made them cleverly their way Joe...
    The wooden items and painting Etc.

    I think all over the world in somewhere you will find these people that forgotten from the other nation? I hope I was wrongly saying in here....

    I loved their product from used the nature items
    and when you go to the Fiji island you will seen
    them a lot and place likes Hawaii that is close to you to trip?

    Whats a great view of the their building I wish a good lucky for them for their future.
    Thank you for your precious time for read my post that appreciated it very much Joe.

    Hope you have a great day my friend,

  7. Peace is the most precious of commodities, internally and externally. What amazes me is that every war is due to a religious conviction. Crazy, totally crazy. I would love if in my lifetime all people of this earth would realize that we are linked as if pearls on a necklace. Break the string and look what happens -- not just one, but many, many fall and are lost. If we realize and rejoice in the fact that we are all kin and of the same Creator, then maybe we will change our way of thinking, or dealing, or accepting of others. You think?
    But as for the shops, oh brother, I'd be broke. I'd be buying up all the bowls and dishes. Yep, living alone, I really need all 100 bowls, LOL. I'm such a girlie girl. Can't help it ;)
    Joe, I heard either on my page or someone else's
    that you were going away for a few months. If that's so, I hope to see one more blog from you first, and you KNOW I wish all of you the best of Christmases and the best of Christ, and safe going and happiness always. xoxoxo

  8. My first real experience with different cultures happened when exploring Haifa, Israel in the mid 80s while on a joint training exercise. Several of us had stopped for a drink and one of the guys left his bag next to a chair at an adjoining table while using the facilities. We really got a jolt when a police team flooded the bar and forced everyone out in the street while their bomb techs examined, removed and "defused" the bag with a high pressure fire hose! The threat of terrorism was a normal part of day to day life for the Israelis while we never gave it any thought. How times have changed!

  9. A wonderful post Joe. The narrative and the photos too! I love the back pack that Lovely got, and the logo is right on.

  10. I'm happy the trip worked out for you and Gabby has recovered I feel sure of it. What beautiful memories you have to treasure, you'll look back at those photo's one day and all your memories will come flooding back.
    Peace to you Joe
    Hugs Lady J

  11. I like that backpack, either color is nice. That must have been a huge snake. Without that inner peace, we'd be most miserable.

  12. I enjoyed the snow..the sight of it but living on the highest point of my town made for a long morning here at home. Yesterday too. However I got out in the mid afternoon. Going down to 8 tonight. :-( Another system on the way for Wednesday. Thanks for looking at the birdies.

  13. I often wonder how those who don't have faith get through the harsh times.. I can't imagnie life without faith in God.. its really hard to comprehend..When I went to Bosnia years ago..there was a peace that most people never feel.. here they are at war.. one can hear the bombs going off .. and yet the people are still in their fields tending to their crops.. they knew and had faith in God.. so they did what they could do.. and left the rest in God's hands.. here in the states we have become lulled by the false sense of peace that materiel things seem to bring..
    love that backpack Joe.. as I do your photos and your feeling and emotions while you were there..its a wonderful walk you and your family shared while over there.. your touch Joe is one of grace and truth.. peace and love.. guided by God's hand..
    I am not sure about this weather we are snowed so hard and fast the other night.. oh my it was beautiful though.. huge flakes.. got about 2 inches.. maybe a little more.. yesterday and part of today was nice and almost warm.. a lot of the snow melted.. but now its just very icy.. we are blessed here in Montana though.. so many are having a harsh winter already back east.. just as it was last winter.. for that fact alone.. I am thankful for Montana's weather.. yes its down right cold at times.. but we really are so very lucky..
    got my tree up.. even have lights on it.. "smile"
    haven't done any shopping yet though.. I really dread the crowds..
    keep warm dear friend..
    soft hugs..

  14. Oh that was a great blog, felt as though i was right there in person seeing all this. It is all amazing to me and makes me want to just hop a plane and start traveling to see all the great things i am so missing out on sitting here in Hotlanta lol.
    Thank you for sharing. It was a wonderful virtual visit

  15. I have been to many Mexican markets. It was wonderful to see what the market looked like where you were. Love your top photo. That special eye you have for seeing what others don't. Thank you for sharing the wonderful outing you had. Hugs Carrie

  16. Just saying hello and thanks for dropping by. I noticed your thumbnail shows snow, looks pretty. Y'all stay warm and safe.