Saturday, September 10, 2016

chicken lesson

   Oh, to the best laid schemes of mice and men. Before returning I had told myself that I needed to be much better about blogging. It is difficult for people to understand and prayerfully support what God is doing, if they don’t know what is going on. Upon return, there were so many things that I wanted to blog about, but we were so busy doing all these things that we had no time left to write about them. Then by week 2, we began the cycle of sicknesses. At least one of us has been sick the majority of the time we have been back. We have gone through flu-like stuff, pneumonia, pink eye (twice for me), and now cold-like stuff. I complained to Tim the other day that I was just tired of being sick and tired.  All of this has kept me from having much time or energy to sit down and write, until now.
bacterial acute conjuntivitis- not pretty, but healing
paramount chief and girls
    I will recap some of what we have done. When we first returned, things were calmer at the hospital than typical (which means that Tim was home more). I don’t remember all the things that we did, but I do remember two things. While we were gone, the brother of the paramount chief (who was a chief of one of the local towns) died. We returned just before the funeral, but we were not able to attend (Tim had to work and it was in a town about 2 hours away). However, we did go to the paramount chief and pay our condolences. We took a gift for him, so Rebekah wanted to bring a gift too. That morning, she picked out and colored a picture in her coloring book of David playing the harp for King Saul to give to the paramount chief. When she presented her gift, the paramount chief responded with a saying in Mampruli talking about a child’s friendship, meaning that they were very close friends now. Rebekah and Abigail spent the rest of our time there running all through his courtyard, chasing his animals (cats, turkey, baby goats). All had to stop what they were doing to watch the girls as they ran after the animals (even the chief’s grandchildren stopped playing to watch them).
girls chasing turkey and everyone watching
Ben in a chicken house
Shea nut fruit
building chicken coop

all three 

 The other thing that I remember was that we were able to go out to town more to visit with people. There is a man in town, Ben, who has asked us several times to come and see his farm. We did not realize the extent of his farming, but some of the volunteers went with us to see his farms. I say farms, because he had a chicken farm, corn field, bean fields, a fish farm…. We enjoyed getting to know Ben better and learning about all different types of farming. We were able to try our first Shea nut fruit. Rebekah also acquired a small white hen, which she named Rebabigail. As a side note, originally we thought about raising chickens while in Ghana. Once here, I decided that the risk of enticing snakes to come around was too much for me and I nixed the idea.  Anyways, Ben gave Rebekah this small chick and she was instantly attached (ex: ‘Daddy, you are not allowed to ever kill my little chicky’ ). Now, we had to make a home for it. Tim spent all his free time the rest of that week building a chicken coop. We really enjoyed Rebabigail, as she would follow us around when we were outside and stand at the door watching us when we were inside. Two weeks later we bought two more young hens, a brown and a black one. Sadly, a few days later, Rebabigail disappeared. The other two are beginning to grow accustomed to us, but they are still afraid. The other day, both of the hens disappeared for several hours. They had never really left the back yard before. I was so sure that they had met the same fate as Rebabigail and almost started to cry. I went so far as to tell God that I really didn’t like the way things worked around here. God then reminded me how much more valuable the people’s lives here were than these chickens’ lives. It was a pretty sobering thought. I had almost cried over chickens, but had I ever cried over the lives of the people here? Sadly, I find myself too often focusing on unimportant things and missing what is truly important. After letting that sink in all afternoon, I watched God bring those two young hens back to their chicken coop that evening.

planting our garden
making friends at grinding mill
last time to pick Bella berries
Rebekah and Rebabigail

Tim with chameleon
in town with store owner Rebekah drinking Alavaro fruit drink
trekking through the jungle at Nakpanduri with volunteers

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