Today is a holiday in Ghana. It is Eid Ul Fitr, the end of Ramadan. Businesses are closed. Schools are closed. I am working. Just like I did on July 1, Republic Day in Ghana and July 4, America's Independence Day. Why? Why didn't I take a day off? Because I am leaving on Home Assignment soon and there is a lot to do. On this side of the ocean, I need to make sure my commitments are fulfilled, that my water bill is paid for the next several months, that my electric bill will be paid for the next several months, that my freezer and refrigerator is emptied and any food that is left is given away. I need to make sure that school fees are paid for September's semester for a special needs student. And, I need to set my schedule for the time I will be stateside. Oh, and packing. Did I mention the challenge of packing?
Then, there is arriving in the US. Who will pick me up from the airport? (My brother and sister-in-law and my sister.) Then, or rather now, I need to be concerned about where I will lay my head. I have no home in the US. A phone...I don't have one in the US. So, that is something else I have had to cosider while I am preparing for my "home assignment." I have at least 20 speaking engagements scheduled and possibly more to come, plus two continuing education conferences to attend. Add to that dentist and doctor appointments.How will I get there? I have no car. Flying to and attending conferences is costly. Living in the US, even with a borrowed bed and a borrowed car is much more costly than living in Lawra and driving a motorcycle.
Part of this time is vacation for me. I get to spend time with family and friends. It may be home to you, but, for me, I want to picnic and do fun things like ride (Is that the proper word to use?) on a Segway, see fireworks, go on a boat, see a show, go to a movie...I want to eat foods that I haven't had in ages...Mmmm. I'm dreaming!
And, I want to worship in English! I want to have Communion. I want to be able to sing praises in my heart language. Chances are, there will be all new worship songs and I won't know any of them.
How can you help? (You can help, you know.) Computer help. A car to drive. A day spent together having fun. Shopping! Gift cards for fuel. Gift cards for restaurants. Gift cards for amazon.com. All that stuff can help. And, can cut expenses. And, will give memories that when I am in Lawra feeling alone, I can remember the time we had together in the US.
Home Assignment is not for the faint of heart. It is almost four months of a gruelling schedule, visiting churches, talking about ministry and trusting God will provide. Pray for my health. Pray for my sanity. Pray that my needs will be met while in the US . Pray that funds will be raised so I can stay here for five more years. Pray that in all my business, I will not forget the One whom I serve.
Follower of Christ, Cross Cultural Worker, presently serving Christ in the Lawra area of the Upper West Region of Ghana.