• By Susan Dixon

July 2017 Ghana Team Blog


Read from bottom to top if you want to read chronologically.

Interested in joining a team? We are currently taking applications for our next trip to Ghana which will leave July 2018 out of Atlanta. Click here for more info.

July 24 | Prayer Stones & Final Blessings

Every journey must come to an end and this has been hard for our team. The time has gone quickly and we have made some special connections already. This morning, Jordan led our devotional by reading Philippians 3:14 "I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us." That verse spoke to us so clearly. We could choose to spend the next few hours sad about having to leave or we could choose to finish well. We chose the latter. Our team prayed over many of the staff, volunteers, and children today. We prayed as the Spirit led and many were encouraged to get confirmations from the Lord on what God had already been speaking to them. Our God is faithful. Sometimes, our hearts just need reminding.

We went to our last morning assembly at the school. It is where the students hear announcements, sing songs, and march into their classrooms. I'm sure it is more than that and that my American interpretation is not doing it justice, actually. It's a special time and the kids are adorable as they do it.

At the beginning of our journey, we carried over 30 scripture rocks with us (small stones with various scriptures carved in them). Each day, each person on our team left our room with a few stones in their pockets and eyes expectant to find the person for whom that stone was to be given. We gave out our last few stones today and even that was Spirit led. It doesn't take much to encourage a person. It simply takes a willing heart and ears that are sensitive to what the Lord wants to do.

The Lord has done exceedingly abundantly above all that we could have asked or imagined. To Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen. [Ephesians 3:20-21, paraphrased]. And now, our journey back home begins. Thank you all for your prayers and support. If you are interested in joining a future Faith Journeys team, you can find out more at www.faith-journeys.org or email susan@faith-journeys.org. Blessings!

July 23 | Church & a Sabbath Day

Today was our last full day here in Ghana and it is bittersweet. We cherished every sweet face and silly interaction with these precious kiddos. We had church this morning and it was powerful. 2+ hours in a packed non-air conditioned room and we could’ve stayed in there for hours longer, I think. The presence of God was glorious. After church, we took a prayer walk and enjoyed our time with new friends.

After dinner, there was a worship workshop to teach in the power of worship for the Kingdom. Autumn (Director of Education) and Johnbull (Co-founder of CORM) shared on what it means to be a true worshiper of God and their points were convicting and powerful. Don't be a hypocrite (worshiping on Sundays and living otherwise every other day). Remove your idols. Stay humble. Keep your heart pure for the Lord. After the teaching, we put the lesson into practice and worshiped the Lord with hearts abandoned. It was so good and so cleansing. This personally was my highlight of the trip. The Lord met me in that place in such a tender way. It was Cailyn's favorite time as well.

July 22 | Quality Time

Today was a one on one kind of day. Stacy got to know Dora as they walked together. Jordan bonded with Rafael and it’ll be hard on both of them when we leave. Cailyn played board games and helped with face painting (Dorcas as her first masterpiece today).

Kayla spent time with Chandler, one of the volunteer teachers here and I spent time with Christin, another volunteer teacher. The last day of school is next Wed and then they’ll both be heading home. There are some incredible volunteers serving here and it’s been neat to hear their stories and get to know them too.

Dee has bonded with Joel as they talked art and Shannon was having fun with sweet Wilfred. This place is full of love. It’s beautiful and really so peaceful. Jesus lives here. ❤️

July 21 | Prayers & Fun with Friends

Today was a beautiful day. Super crazy hot... but beautiful. Every morning, someone from the team leads devotional and then we anoint and pray over one another. Then we prayer walk the property and pray some more. I guess you could say prayer has been our main mission here and I’m really proud of that. There’s nothing more important.

We did get a chance to interact with some of the new boys as well but for their protection we will not be posting their pictures. They are already playing and asking questions about when dinner is and what certain items are. They are curious and extremely resilient. I’ve been shocked and blessed to see it. Here are pictures of us having downtime with some of the other children though. They are all so precious in their own way.

ChaChi (Kayla's nickname) played some volleyball (Susan tried) and then last night was movie night. The kids ate sugary popcorn with us and we watched “Ever After” on the side wall of the cafeteria wall. They do this every Friday and the kids really look forward to it.

Prayer night followed from midnight to 3:30am which was beautiful. Intense. Powerful. And spiritually stretching. They do this every other Sat night and, if you ask the leaders, this time is the single most powerful thing they do. It’s something else to serve alongside a ministry that 100% believes that prayer moves mountains.

July 20 | Debrief Day

Today we explored much of Ghana. We went to Shai Hills Reserve to climb some beautiful terrain. It was a little strenuous in places and everyone did great! The view was well worth the exercise!

Do you see Stacy trying to reenact the Lion King with Cailyn? This team is crazy (in such a fun way). After the Reserve, we went to see various waterfalls in Eastern Ghana. It was quite the drive and our tour guide made that an adventure in itself- haha. "Playing chicken" has taken on a whole new meaning for us now. Seriously though, Ghana is a beautiful country and we were blessed to venture off the compound for a day of exploring.

July 19 | Miracles & Blessings

This morning with spent time with Pastor Robert and the women of 7 Continents. Kayla and Jordan were very brave and shared some of their testimony with them. It really touched us all and led Cailyn to share some of her story also. Regardless of how young or old we are, we all have a testimony to share that can encourage others- (if we'll allow God to use us that way). Pastor Robert also shared some of his story and then we all decided to pray over one another. It was such a special time. I truly felt the Heavens open up over us in that place.

After we prayed, we each asked one of the ladies to make something special for us. Cailyn asked for a dress and a day later, look how amazing it turned out! She looks stunning. Here's what I love about 7 Continents. These women are learning a trade- yes. And that will help them help themselves and their families to have a better life. BUT, they are learning so much more than that. They are learning to read, to speak English. and they are being discipled in Christ. As our team shared, these women would respond in loving truth. Sharing scriptures from memory and verse. I was so touched at their knowledge of God's word. Nothing is more powerful to break down the schemes of the enemy. God is so good.

In the evening, Cailyn, Dee, Shannon, and Stacy all co-taught on pieces in the book of Jeremiah. About 50 people were in the Church (mostly children) and it was a little difficult to reign in, to be honest. These women did amazing, though, and I saw several of the children and teachers touched by what and how they taught from the Word of God. I could not have been prouder.

July 18 | More Painting, Prayer

We had a busy day. Shannon led our devotional time and then we went on a prayer walk. We continue to pray blessings and a covering over this ministry, their staff, volunteers, and children. We had eggs as a special treat for breakfast, alongside our bread and butter of course. Kayla is trying to figure out how to smuggle the bread home. It is really good!

8am sharp we were back to painting alongside Matthew, and just look what’s been accomplished! The boys coming in will have a freshly painted room, as well as brand new mattresses and pillows. Every bit of that room was prayed over and anointed. God is pouring out His love on them already. They will arrive to CORM tomorrow and there were 5 more rescued than we anticipated. 15 boys who were captive last week have now been set free and found a forever home here at City of Refuge. What a blessing!

This afternoon, we helped sort through the clothes we brought as well as some others and when the boys arrive tomorrow they will pick a few outfits from the bins. They come only with the clothes on their backs so thank you for your donations! They matter and will be used immediately.

Tomorrow, we are spending time with the women of 7 Continents who have enrolled in the seamstress apprenticeship program. A couple of our gals are sharing their testimonies then so please keep them in prayer. That the Lord would have them share from the heart and anoint their words with love.

July 17 | Prayer Walking, Painting, & Aquaponics

We started the morning off early (6:30am) with breakfast and a prayer walk around the property. Breakfast typically consists of instant coffee and a loaf of bread with butter. The bread is actually quite tasty and we were happy with that. Dee did pack an entire suitcase of snacks for the team and we took great advantage of that during the journey. Great idea for the next team!

We spent most of the rest of our day with Matthew, the Maintenance Manager at CORM. He's in the far right picture and is an absolute ray of sunshine. He loves Elevation music and sharing Christ with everyone He meets. He was so excited to see me anointing the windows and doors of the room we were painting because it was then that he realized we were Christians. As a team, we were so excited to help with this painting project because this room will be home to the 10 boys in the process of being rescued from slavery off of Lake Volta. Matthew would have had to find a way to complete this job in 2 days on his own and we are so glad we were able to make it go by quickly. "Many hands make light work." Neh Chapter 3 After painting, some of us went to play "football" (soccer) with the boys who were released from school. Most of them play barefoot or in flipflops and they still dominated us big time on the soccer field. That evening, Matthew proudly showed off his hydroponic garden and Cailyn especially loved it. We were unexpectedly caught in a rain shower and had to hide out in the Prayer House for a few minutes. We took the opportunity to pray over Matthew and Cailyn's new friend, Abigail. He was encouraged through our prayers and her back pain was healed in the name of Jesus. Sometimes what seems like a (rain) delay, is actually an opportunity to bless the ONE in front of you.

July 14 - 16 | Travel Days

We were scheduled to fly out of Atlanta on July 14 around 3pm but our flight was delayed and it forced us to reschedule for the following day. A few of us were discouraged but we pushed through. It truly seemed like the enemy was making one last effort to keep us from getting to Ghana but he only succeeded in delaying us. We all arrived back at the Atlanta airport and well rested on Saturday and left that evening. Thanks all for your prayers!

We arrived in Ghana the next evening about 7:30 and met our hosts without a problem. We started our night time drive and then quickly realized our headlights were out. There really aren't streetlights or traffic signals out where we were so Stacy Omorefe (Co-founder of City of Refuge Ministries) decided we should stop and get two taxis to guide us home. Quite the adventure already! We arrived at City of Refuge Ministries (CORM) at about 11pm and were led straight to our accommodations which included 5 bunk beds and a restroom with a shower. The house we were staying in was one of the few in the compound that has a generator, which would later come in handy during a major thunderstorm.

July 12 & 13 | Prayer Send off

We were so blessed to have many friends and family join us at our Florida and Georgia based Prayer Send Off's. Prayer moves mountains and there is nothing quite as powerful as God's people joining together to pray for each other and for others. To pray for God's will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven.

Our Prayer Send Offs started with time in fellowship and then in worship. Our God is worthy to be praised and things that weigh us down somehow fall off when we focus on His glory. After worship, we spent time in prayer for the 10 boys being rescued out of slavery at the end of this month, for the staff and long-term volunteers serving God through our partners (City of Refuge Ministries), and for our team. Different voices throughout both meetings lifted up sweet prayers for us, for Ghana, and for these children. We took communion, we cried out to the Lord, and we rejoiced for the blessings about to come. It was a sacred and beautiful time.

After this, several people anointed and prayed over each specific person on the team. They were affirmed and uplifted and God left us all feeling truly poured into during this time. Thank you so much to all of you that came. Thank you to those that couldn't come in person but were praying along with us. We are blessed to have so much support. Ghana here we come!

May | Pre-Trip: Training


Thank you for signing into our Faith Journeys Ghana Team Blog. Many of you have invested time, prayers, and finances into this so you are a part of our journey as well and we want you to follow along! We depart July 14 and intend to update this as much as we can, (depending on what kind of connection we get) once we are over there. Keep this link and pray for us often. We'd so appreciate it.

A few weeks ago our team of 7 women gathered for 2 1/2 days of intense training. Some of our team knew each other and some did not so we had a great time of breaking the ice and getting to know one another. Pies were thrown, meals were shared, and agape love was felt all throughout. We spent time learning about discipleship, heart healing, and how to serve others in a way that preserves dignity... and in between all that we also shared some of our personal struggles and were able to pour love and prayers over each other in the process.

A lot was packed into those short days and God was so present. He brought together a unique group of women for this journey, and yet we also found we have so many things in common, especially our love for Jesus. God has already begun a powerful work in each of us through this journey and we are so excited to see how He plans to use us while we are in Ghana supporting our City of Refuge Ministries partners.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to all of the friends and family who are praying for us and supporting us in this journey. We will do our best to update this blog daily once we depart, so make note of the address to get future updates.

Blessings,

Susan

Interested in joining a team? We are currently taking applications for our next trip to Ghana which will leave July 2018 out of Atlanta. Click here for more info.

#missions #shorttermmissions #FaithJourneys #trainingthroughmissions #Prayer #Ghana

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