Wednesday, July 15, 2009 (4:05pm) I first want to say; itís another privilege for God to allow me to come to Guyana one more time. I never take it for granted that I am good enough to speak before his people here or anywhere for that matter. It is two years now since my last visit and I am excited to be able to share the gospel with those who I gather with for this weekís crusade and those I re-visit in 2007.
I am also thankful for that peace that God has given my husband and me about those who are taking care of things back at home with Chosen 300. Thank you Dexter, Scott, Tomar, Marc, Carrie, Ms Diane, Latrista, Corinne, Yvette and Wendell for all the hard work you all are doing making sure the ministry is still standing when we return. Thank you Sister Lollie, Josie, Byron and Dad for taking care of the boys while we are away. All of these things are so important to both my husband and me. We want you all to know that we appreciate you.
This year others who have come to experience the work of missions outside of the US accompany us. The goal is to partnership the US churches with the churches here in Guyana not only to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ but to also embrace the hunger need of each church and their community. By doing so, through Chosen 300, a feeding program would be developed in each church in which we partner with.
When stepping off the plane, I couldnít help but think about my first experience in the airport of Guyana when the young child came to me asking for money. That child still sticks in my mind till this day. This time, there were loads of guys trying to help us with our bags. I saw them coming ahead of time. As the numbers grew, the tips also began to grow. There was a sixth person coming to ask for a tip and Amber who was one of the missionaries traveling with us reached in her purse to give him 200 (GY) which is equivalent to $1 (US). By this time, the driving from the Elim Church put a stop to it and we had to quickly prep the crew on cautiousness.
By the time we arrived to the hotel around 8:30 am, we were all more than exhausted. We decided to take a nap for a few hours and then start our day in the early afternoon. We started out in Georgetown to do a little shopping in the markets. I purchased three hats that I absolutely love. The only problem is that when I got back to the hotel, I found that the army green hat I purchased out of the three was about a size too small, so of course Iíll get back to the stand sometime before we leave to hopefully exchange for the same color. We went to another stand and saw bracelets we were interested in buying along with different size Guyaneese flags. The guy at the stand saw that we werenít from his town and tried to sell Shun who is a Pastor from Memphis TN a flag for 1000 (GY) when the pack showed 500 (GY) on the bottom. I just happened to notice the writing and called him on it. As we walked away, Shun decided to witness by sharing the love of Jesus Christ to him. I thought that was a real blessing.
Later that evening, we all had an opportunity to meet with the pastors of Guyana at the restaurant of the hotel in which we were staying. Originally, we had an organized plan of action for the services each evening. When we begin to discuss the agenda, we found that there were some major changes that need to be done. I begin to think when Jesus used the analogy of the good man who would have watched his house if he had know that a thief was going to rob it, so it is to be ye also ready and watch, for no man knows the day or the hour in which the son of man cometh. The key is to be ready for what ever is needed to this mission.
Friday, July 13, 2009 (7:25 pm) Good morning, I thought it would be a breeze to blog in the morning, get my day started, and at the end of the night write to you again. As you can see, that isnít the case. This has been a full and fulfilled experience so far. We started the crusade on Wednesday. I preached at Pastor Oliverís church. I was picked up in a cab and taken to the church at 5:00pm. The people were very welcoming. I really enjoy the praise and worship part of the service. First Iíd like to say the people donít waste time with announcements or anything like that, but they jump right into prayer and singing. Nicole who read the scripture and Amber who said the prayer before I preached accompanied me. The church was more on the conservative side, but what is so amazing is that they were still able to receive the message and participate in the service as well. Iím talking about raising there hands and coming to the alter for prayer. I wouldnít say this was something that normally happened.
My message topic was ďYou are someone worth liftingĒ where Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and his purpose for doing so was not only so that he would get the glory, but so that otherís would believe; which made this one of the purposes for Lazarus concerning his life worth living.
Saturday, July 18, 2009 (8:34pm) I am feeling so appreciative and privileged to have the opportunity to come to Guyana even more as the days progress. It has been an awesome experience so far. After Wednesday, the first night of the crusade, we all gathered together for an evening session to reflect our experiences and what we could learn from it.By the way, this is something that we do as a group each day; which helps us to assimilate and reflect. It was also a good feeling to discuss and open up to one another. We got to bed about 1:15 in the morning and Brian, Shun and I were up the next day at 6:30 am to go for our morning walk. During our walk, we had to watch the ditches in the road. The cars and buses travel (in what I call) the wrong direction. I say this because the driving is on the opposite side of the street. The sunbeams are high like midday and the sweat just pours down your back before you can get a good walk started.
The great thing about walking on the streets of Guyana is that we get to stop and talk to people. We get to witness Godís grace and his forgiveness of our sins to the people. Our first witness, Shun stopped at a stand to talk to a guy selling eggs. Shun witnessed to the guy and he even brought a bag of raw eggs to support his business. Not long after, we saw a homeless man walking and Shun decided to give him the eggs. The homeless man was thankful.
I took lots of pictures along the way. I took pictures of poverty on every side and while walking, I found myself dodging hole after hole and ditch after ditch. For someone taught to look with your head held high when your walking down the street, it is easy to quickly get use to walking with your head down in Guyana for all the right reasons.
We took a tour of Guyana and learned everything we wanted to know about the culture, the heritage, and its continent. We also learned that Guyana build house on stilts in certain parts because it is below C level. Kind of the way it is with New Orleans. We had a wonderful tour guide that was very informative. We met marine soldiers along the way. We found out that they were in Guyana to build schools.
We visited a museum that talked about the different Indians tribes such as the Arawak, Carib, Mawakwa, WaiWai, Patomana, and many other tribes. When we first entered the museum the guard asked the group to leave the bags at the front of the counter. Just to bring you to date, this counter wasnít like a lobby counter that was protected. I mentioned that I had valuables in the bag and didnít want to leave them. Brian volunteered to stay behind while we toured. However, we insisted that he come with us so that we could stay together. Finally, the group kept their bags with them until the manager came to see why we didnít obey the museums rules. She mentioned that if we didnít obey the rules then we were to leave the museum. I explained to her that our valuables are passport and money and that both of those things are going to get me out of the country. Some of the team left items at the counter just to deter the complaints, but I later on the manager came back to apologize. She said that she was convicted by the Holy Spirit and decided to give us a special tour that no other person has ever seen. It was giant bones of a Sloth that was found in the ocean bank. I was more impressed that she confessed in the middle of working for the museum that she was convicted than offering to view the newly found fossil of a Sloth. All together, I can say it was a good day learning more about the country.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009 (8:23am) It has been a challenging time trying to blog everyday. However; every experience has stuck in my mind, so lets start with Thursday, day two of the crusade. I went to the Timehri church with Brian, which was an awesome experience. I was impacted more by the revisit to see all the faces of the People that I had not seen since 2007. Elim was my first connection to Guyana. Everyone was so excited to see me, as I was excited to see everyone. All of the children grew up a lot in the past two years and there were many new faces that I saw as well. The Elim church grew tremendously since my last visit and many of them didnít know of course. I was looking to see the dance ministry that continued after my visit in 2007. When I share with Elim the ministry of dance, they didnít quite understand at first. I did a training dancing in the church; afterwards I went created a dance for the dance team to learn. Now in 2009 I had the chance to see it in effect on a video that Brian took on Wednesdayís service. After seeing the worship through dance and the anointing that flowed behind it, I was so privilege to see that they kept their promise to God and that God would use me to start a ministry here in Guyana that is so dear to my heart.
There were unbelievably huge bugs that you can count in the number of people in the church. I looked down at the floor and saw an Army Ant that was soooo big; I stared at it like it was a ghost. Nicole, who was with us, She kicked it out of the way as it came toward her feet. The Army Ant turned around and ran back at her feet, but little did it know that her dad was in the army, so Nicole had special skill kicking it to the other side of the church, next to a man worshiping. Not long after, there were dragonflies hovering over our head. We tried to play it cool as if it wasnít a big deal staying focused on the worship as everyone else did. However; we could play it off for long; as the fly darted at us we ducked and swatted it out of the way. After a way, it would get caught in the ceiling fan hit the dusty concrete later being blown away like tumbleweed. Could you imagine if I didnít use my off?
After the service, we stopped over Roxanneís house. She is one of the church members of Elim. Roxanne has a beautiful home and loves to share it with everyone who comes to her church from the U.S. I would say that Roxanne is very faithful to her Pastor and his wife. She is willing to do what is needed; making sure our visit to Guyana is a pleasant one. Everywhere we needed to go, if Roxanne was available, she was there.
Mike Sammy, Pastor of Elim has three plant churches since I last seen him. I had the opportunity to preach at the Enterprise Timehri Christian Fellowship. Before I tell about that experience, I must say that I had another awesome experience at Carol Oliverís church that is the pastor of Ascension Temple. During this visit, I was very humbled by the reaction of the people when I returned. They were expecting me on Wednesday, but there were some changes that had to be made after we found out that Victor Horatioís church (Uitha Christian Church) was having another service throughout the week. We needed to give Shun (Pastor of Bing Hampton Community Church) the opportunity to able to preach by sharing one of my nights of the crusade.
Wednesday night the presence of God was an outpouring. I was able to pray and minister to the people of that church. As a result, Friday night's service was a big reflection of what took place on Wednesday as the service actually opened up with testimonies after testimonies. I was amazed how God touched the life of one woman who I ministered to on Wednesday. She said in her testimony that she would wake up everyday with such a troubled heart, but since I prayed for her she felt the presence of God come upon her and that she is now free. This woman was so quiet on Monday. I almost didnít recognize her. Now, she was singing and dancing and telling everyone how she canít stop saying thank you Jesus. Those were the exact words that God said for her to do as I prayed for her during Monday evening service. At the time, it seemed like a struggle, but once God freed her spirit, thereís no stopping her now. The testimonies would come again and again. About the blessed time each individual encounter during the service. This was a true encouragement to me and I give all the glory to God for the outpouring in the service and pray that all that he had for the people would be fulfilled.
The service on Friday was blessed. God moved in a powerful way. The spirit of the Lord was looking for those who would worship him. God was calling for the worshipers. He was looking for those who would sup with him. Even those who would spend some time with him. Many people seek the Lord in their own timing, but the Lord needed them in his timing. The worshippers whoís hearts were opened to receive. The people were on their knees bowed down before the Lord. If someone walked in the church while the people were worshiping and didnít know Jesus for themselves, they might have assumed it to be a mosque.
Worshipping is what we as Christians often fail to do. We have the opportunity to fall on our knees and worship. Why not take that opportunity? I was riding in a taxicab in New York heading to the Airport and saw a man who owned a business stand on the corner. He took the time that he felt was needed and was down on his knees bowing before his God. He bowed down several times, got up and gave reverence and went back down on both knees bowing down as thousands of people walked by him. We have to get to the place in our lives that it doesnít matter whoís watching. Our time with God has to be available to worship. The hustle and bustle in our everyday life canít stop us from worshipping God, but it has to be first and foremost in our everyday living. The songwriter says, ďWhen the saints go to worship, thatís when the King of kings will come in. When the saints go up in praise, thatís when Godsí spirit shall inhabit this place.Ē I thank the Lord for a fresh outpouring of his spirit during the Friday night crusade.
Preaching at Ascension Temple
Beggar on the streets
At the home of Pastor Keith Haynes
Witnessing during morning walk
Preaching at Sophia Church
Food distribution at Sophia
Shan and member of Sophia
witnessing to children
leading children in song at Uitha Church
Children of Uitha Church
Homeless Guyaneese Man
Baptizing young girl at Timehri Church
Witnessing to hmls man Eager during morning walk
Shan leading Eager to Christ
Shan witnessing in the village
Preaching at Enterprise Timehri Church
Shan and Brian w/ those baptized
homeless man sleeping on wood table
Brian witness to children
food distribution at Sophia Church
Shan at Sophia Church
Pastors Mike Sammy and Victor Horatio
Rice, Peas, Flour, & Dry Milk to sort for feeding program
Shan pray for Woman and Child
Shan pray for Children
Shan preaching at Enterprise Timehri
Shun of TN witnessing during morning walk
Pastor Mark of Enterprise Timehri
Children surround Nikki of TN as she leads to Christ
Nicole of TN talking with Guyaneese girl
Brian Pray for Handicap child
Amber of TN serve meals to children of Uitha Church