Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Thoughts From the Week

If you change a circumstance without changing a heart, you don't change a life. -Pastor Michael Edwards.

What a true statement. When people visit Africa one of the first things that want to do is help. "How can I be of help to these people?"  Giving money will that help? Giving medical assistance, will that help? What about food, they need to eat. All those things will help temporally, they will meet the obvious need. Unfortunately that is not the problem. They have a heart issue. Until their heart changes you can't really help them. They need a heart transplant. The only one to do surgery is Christ.

Naomi's collage 

The Arrogant Geese 
Russian Fable

     A peasant was one day driving some geese to town where he hoped to sell them. He had a long stick in his hand and drove them pretty fast. But the geese did not like to be hurried and happening to meet a traveler, they poured out their complaints against the peasant. 
     "Where can you find geese more unhappy than we? See how this peasant is hurting us this way and that and driving us just as though we were only common geese. Ignorant fellow! He never thinks that he is bound to respect us, for we are the descendants of the very geese that saved Rome so many years ago."
     "But for what are you famous yourselves?" asked the traveler.
     "Because our ancestors--"
     "Yes, I know, I have read all about it. What I want to know is, what have you yourselves done?"
     "Why, our ancestors saved Rome!"
     "Yes, yes! But what have you done?'
     "We? Nothing--"
     "Of what good are you then? Do leave your ancestors at peace! They were honored for their deeds; but you, my friends, are only fit for roasting."

I know it's not a goose, but it is good for roasting. This turkey I saw while on visitation. 

     An idle man said he could not find bread for his family. "Neither can I," said an industrious man standing near. "I have to work for all the bread I get."

Just some thoughts from the week.

Friday, October 2, 2015

New Season of Life

This Saturday we are passing out flyer's in Kojokrom, to invite those to our first Sunday evening service on October 4th. We already hold a Tuesday evening Bible study and are adding Sunday evenings. We bus those who will come for Sunday morning to Cornerstone for now.

We have started teaching Bible lessons at the Sekondi Deaf School. We had our first class to learn sign language this Wednesday. This is not our focus, but a tool that may be used later. Our focus is church planting in Kojokrom. The kids are enjoying it, they like learning the signs. I would like to keep learning if our schedule permits. They are very eager for us to learn their language. They are always teaching us. I am enjoying it so far.

I was so excited about a few weeks ago, I ran into my friend Basheru. He sells vegetables. He is also a Muslim boy, who is growing into a young man. I have been on the look out for him for many weeks. I bought some green peppers from him so I would get a chance to talk with him. I know he is being watched, especially when the white lady, who is a Christian, talks with him. All I can do it tell him the truth. It is up to him to make the choice.

I can't believe it, I am in denial. I turned 40 years old in September. Which by the way is the best time of the year. Love September!! When my mom turned 40, I thought, wow, that is old. I was anticipating a dreadful, horrible, rotten day. For some unknown reason, I was really happy!! I am looking forward to what the Lord has for me in this new season of life.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Mr. & Mrs.

I don't know where to begin. I wanted to update my blog a week ago, so I could focus on blogging about the wedding, but that didn't work. Let me bring you up to date. The electric has been much better for the past three weeks. We started school on August 17th, that is also when the Bible classes at the church started. We had VBS at Cornerstone, August 10-14. We started a van route for our Kojokrom Tuesday Bible Study, so they can come on Sunday mornings. We will begin Sunday evening services there in Kojokrom in October. OK, now the good part:

Prince and Linda got married on the 29th of August. The Thursday before the wedding I had a couple of girls come over and help with the frosting for he cake, that I was supposed to make. I decided on a fondant, because of the heat here the icing would just melt and the cake would fall and yeah. The fondant recipe I found was just sugar, water and a little corn syrup. The problem was once the syrup hardened you had to knead all the sugary lumps out of it. That was a job. You should of seen me and Naomi the morning of the wedding rolling out this hard fondant, lets just say, the Lord helped us out!! (amateur, not a wedding cake decorator.) I was so nervous, I was having dreams of that dreaded cake weeks before. I even dreamt I missed the wedding because I slept through it and no one woke me up for the wedding. Then I was like, "what about the cake? Who made the cake?" I prayed and fretted over that cake. I Thought about going and buying a cake in town. In the end it didn't turn out so bad. I am just glad it was presentable, I just wanted Prince and Linda to have a special day.

Thursday afternoon we had a wedding rehearsal. Friday was the dowry ceremony. Prince had to meet the requirements Linda's family requested in order to marry her. It was interesting to say the least. There are negations, gifts and all the traditions that go with it. Friday evening we had another rehearsal. Naomi-violin, Matthew-piano and I-flute, played the hymns during the wedding and also a song while they lit the unity candle and prayed. My husband gave the message during the wedding and Pastor Dare married them. My favorite part was before Prince was to kiss the bride, his best man, Martin, wiped his hands, his brow and his face, so he was ready. Once the wedding was over, they had a meal and the cutting of the cake. Introducing to you, Mr. & Mrs. Prince Tackie:

On Sunday Prince and Linda came to church and sang a song as a new couple. It is tradition here in Ghana that the new couple attends their church that Sunday with their family. They left for their honeymoon on Monday.

Prince's mom on the left, Linda's mom on the right
On Monday, August 31st, was Matthew's 16th birthday. In Ghana if it is your birthday they dump water on you. They got him on Sunday morning while we where cleaning up the tents and chairs. They all got water to wash their hands and get a drink and then they got him. They where pretty sneaky. Matthew said it felt good, because he was hot. Tuesday night at our Bible study they got him again. I can't believe my kids are that old. 



Friday, July 10, 2015

A Bit Overwhelmed

Nehemiah cracks me up. Naomi and I where in over our heads cleaning the kitchen. The rest of the house is a mess also. We hear Nehemiah singing "Hallelujah, Hallelujah". Me and Naomi looked at each other, how in the world in all this mess can he be singing. That boy is in his own world. He just picked up where he left off a year ago and is right back into the flow of things, with out batting an eye. Now that I think of it, he was out of his element when we were back in the States.

Our first night back was, well, lets just say we found a place to sleep and called it a night. Most of us slept in the living room, because our ceiling fans didn't work. We were just praising the Lord we had fans to sleep under because the electric was on!! Our second day, Mack fixed the fans and got the generator up and working. We were all able to sleep in our own beds. From there we made a lot of progress cleaning and unpacking. We are still adjusting to the electric being off and trying to figure out the schedule. (I am not sure we will ever figures it out).

I love our church family. It is so good to be back. Sunday morning Mr. Eshun sang a song for Prince and Linda, for their up coming wedding. (August 29th, there has been a change.) Well you just have to know Mr. Eshun. Sunday evening we were teasing Prince because he picked Linda's favorite song which is: "Jesus Is All The World To Me" we said, no, she is really singing, "Prince Is All The World To Me". What makes me so happy is to see our church love their Pastor, Prince and follow him. We already have a Bible study in Kojokrom and our focus will be more on that ministry as we phase out.

Nehemiah and Joseph had eye doctor appointments before we left. Nehemiah was legally blind in his left eye. He is now seeing 20/20. He will still have to wear the patch for the next 3 years. If he doesn't  his good eye will take over and he will be right back where we started from. I am glad we saw such improvement in such a sort time. He got his glasses in December, starting patching in January and in June he was seeing 20/20. God is good!

Joseph when he wore the patch


Naomi has her drivers license, she took the test about 2 weeks before we left. The same day our van sold and God answered all of our needs in one day. Besides packing we where ready to head back to Africa.

July is my favorite month in Ghana. I declare Christmas in July!! Come December we will be suffering. (That is just a side note.)

There is still plenty to do here, but we are getting settled. Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, June 1, 2015

June Already?

We had family over for Memorial Day. I was excited because I don't get to have them over often. We are usually on the road. We actually got to spend the day at home with family. It was a beautiful day and we had so much fun with everyone.


We where in two churches last Sunday. It was good to be with them and see everyone again. We have
one last meeting this Sunday. I can't believe it is June already. The kids leave for camp this Saturday. 
It is getting rather hectic around here. Trying to get rid of things, pack and clean. Then once we get to Ghana, we have to unpack and clean. I am getting tired.

 Brother and Sister ministering in church

Mack's parents spent the week with us. We haven't been able to spend one-on-one time with them since we have been home. So, they came for the week and it was really enjoyable being able to have that time with them.          


Saturday, May 9, 2015

Time's Almost Up

Time is quickly coming to an end. We are home bound for the most part now. We still have meetings every Sunday, close to home. Our last church will be in PA, June 6. We have a lot to get done in just two months. Great news is, we have finished school. Shoo! Please pray for us as we switch gears to head back to Ghana.

On May 4th, Naomi turned 17. I can't believe it. Matthew has begun his in car driving. Nehemiah is doing great with his glasses/patch. He is now seeing 20/30 out of his left eye. He will have to wear the patch for the next 3 years. We have a great Eye Doctor. Joseph saw her when he was 10 months old and she has been working with Joseph over the years, now Nehemiah. The Lord really directed us to her.

At the eye doctors

We got to spend the weekend with Pastor Rowell and his wonderful family. Mrs. Rowell asked me to speak at their mother/daughter banquet on Friday. I spent the day Saturday shopping and fellowshipping with Mrs. Rowell and the two Naomi's. Sunday we had great services, really enjoyed Pastor Rowell's message, "Your Want To's," we the love the church family. Finally got to meet the two handsome grand babies, I have heard so much about! It was such and encouragement to be with this family. Love you!!!

Eden helping Matthew play the piano

I think we skipped Spring, it is rather warm out there, but loving it!!!!!!!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Encouragement Along The Way

We where away from the house for 3 weeks. We've had longer trips on deputation, but this was the longest we have been away for a while. It was a great 3 weeks. We had some wonderful churches along the way that encouraged us. Our first week was in Murfreesboro TN. We stayed with our nephew Daniel and his wife Breanna. The are on staff at the Bill Rice Ranch. We had two meetings in the area and enjoyed some nicer weather.

Daniel & Breanna Siekbert

Then we headed down to Pensacola, Florida. We visited PCC for two days, so our kids could see the college. Saw my brother and many people we know. Stayed with the Bowman's and even saw an old friend who was on the mission field with her parents. It was a great two days.

                   Mack & Dan talking of days gone by.                          Pastor Atkins

                              Nehemiahs video teacher                                Josephs video teacher

                                My Brother Nolan                                         Nehemiah & Nolan

After PCC, we headed to South Carolina for a meeting on Sunday night and one on Wednesday. We stopped into a church on Sunday morning that we where not scheduled, a couple asked us over for lunch. The Turpennings served in Togo for a year to help another missionary. It was nice to talk with them and talk of home.

This picture was taken while they where in Togo, years ago.

We were in a new church on Sunday, in North Carolina. What a blessing, they spoiled us. Then we headed to Crown College for a day. Then back to NC for a Wednesday meeting. Then on to Kentucky for a Missions Conference. It was a great week! Stayed with a sweet lady who opened her home to us. Thanks Dawnielle. They gave the missionaries a date night and watched our kids for us. Sunday night the church kids gave all the missionaries kids a love offering. It was a blessing to see all those who are serving in the church and have a heart for missions. We enjoyed bus church with the kids and canvasing for a new church being started out of that church.

                               Mack seeing if they could balance something on their head, like in Ghana.    


Naomi & Dawnielle

                               Sweet girls in my Sunday school class, ready for their program. 

March 30th was our 19th wedding anniversary and also the beginning of our Spring break. We spent a week in the Smokey Mountains with family. We planned this even before we left Ghana. Mack's twin brother is a missionary in Uganda and his other brother Mark was a missionary in Mongolia, he has switched ministries recently. The only time we get to really visit with each other is this week away in TN.

The grandchildren that where there with Mom & Dad Siekbert

Lesson I learned. God reminded me several times, to be thankful. God is so good to me. One day things did not go as I had planned. I got a little aggravated. Then God dumped blessings into my lap. Then I sat back and felt so guilty of my wrong attitude. I asked God to forgive me, an unthankful brat. Things went as God had planned. I had watched over 3 weeks, the Lord provide and protect us as we traveled. See my kids enjoying being with other church/missionary kids. Church after church, family after family, blessing after blessing and here I am...disgruntled because things didn't go the way I thought they should...shame on me.  They went better than little ole me, move aside and let God have His way, it's much better!

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