To my father…

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My dad left Ghana this morning, after arriving a week ago to celebrate this birthday with the children and I. I am so thankful for my father’s life and the man that he is. I cannot emphasise that, or what my dad means to me. He has only shown selfless, gentle, understanding, and supportive love to me, my family and all around him. Any person who gets to know my father will truly be blessed. My father has been blessed with so many talents and gifts, he only uses them to bring glory to God and to show others by his sacrificial christ like love what it means to truly live as a christian. This doesn’t mean he is perfect, none of us are, but he does an amazing jobΒ setting an example, and placing a standard on what it means, and what it looks like to live a Christ like life.

No one quite understands my vision for PNN, or for my life better than my father. My whole life my dad was always supporting me, and not just supporting my goals, visions but he would incorporate himself into them. He would embrace them and partake in them. I do not know many parents who would fully step on board with their at the time 16 year old daughter traveling to Africa, going with her, and then deciding to start something from nothing because God had called us to do so. His compassion for these children and people we had come to know on our first trip to Ghana turned into a passion. We share the same heart, and see the same vision for where God will take PNN. I have so many amazing memories with my dad but this past week might top them all. We kind of made this full circle, our first time in Ghana was just the two of us, with nothing, no plan or idea that PNN would happen. Here we find ourselves enjoying the work that God has put on our hearts, and seeing the goodness of His faithfulness. Watching the kids play after school, helping with homework, enjoying a movie or talent show, or simply just speaking life into them. These are the kids we worked all these years for. These are the very children God has called to this place at this time. Seeing the children’s lives being changed, and seeing the way in which they responded to my father’s love, and watching them cry when he left was truly amazing. This shows us how love is more powerful than anything, it is the greatest gift from God.

I often think about what my life would look like if my father, well was not my father. I know that I might not be sitting in Ghana writing this post right now, I do not know where I would be. It makes me think about the love he has shown me my whole life. And this is simply how I see it. The love that one person can show can change a generation. My dad’s love and support for my life has enabled me to first know love, and second be able to show love. So dad I thank you for never giving up on me, for providing for me, and embracing my calling on living a very different life. Thank you for coming alongside me and being so open and willing to give more of yourself and your time than I ever deserve.

 

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Tell the nations what he has done

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Psalm 105:1-4

Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done.

Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts.

Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.

Look to the Lord and his strength, seek his face always.

 

Love is a choice…

What is the truest definition of love? The best explanation? The reason behind why we love? How we love? Do we love? To the best of our ability?Β 

Just remember that love is a choice. No one can make it for you, no one can push you to do it. It is a choice that starts in the heart. Love is more about an action than a feeling. Love is a commitment to care for someone in good times and in bad, and to promise not to leave them. Love is sticking it out in the bad times, even when you don’t see any reasonable outcome. So often we tell people we have unconditional love for them, but the truth is, we haven’t experienced or even known true unconditional love. We know how to love because we were loved by Him, first.

Love is not something that we created, or invented, it is all about Him showing us the most perfect love. To love and care for these children might look easy from an onlookers view, or to someone who came and visited. When they see a cute Facebook post or Instagram photo. They see happy smiles or candid moments and want to believe that everything is perfect, and they see this love to be easy. What you don’t see is all the tears, the hardships, the hours put in to discipline these children with love, the times they don’t want to believe that they are deserving to be loved, because they themselves have never been loved. It is a choice that I have made. From the day that I have met them. The most beautiful thing about this love for my kids is that love grows, and it grows stronger, and deeper. The love I have for them is like a mothering love, some call me mom. It is amazing how naturally it can come, and how I myself appreciate my mother even more so because I am starting to see from the other perspective and it is far from easy, but it is completely and totally worth laying down your wants, needs and desires for. To simply show love, and to change hearts so that they too can experience the goodness of His love.

Love is a beautiful thing, imagine if we all could just show love, and not just think about ourselves. This world would be a beautiful place. It’s not a simple answer, or a quick fix but it is something worth investing your life in.

Because how can you choose love if you yourself have never experienced it?