by Joy Casey in Ethiopia
Adoption Ministry Executive Director
written on Saturday, March 9
What a day! Abebe and I picked up four visitors from Texas this morning. They were pretty tired from their long trip, but I know from experience that it is best to keep pushing forward and not give in to sleep until a little closer to bedtime. After a nice breakfast and some strong Ethiopian coffee, we headed to one of our partner churches, Nefas Silk Meseret Kristos. On Saturday mornings a group of men and women meet for prayer, and we tiptoed into the room and dropped to our knees alongside them.
For some reason, I always feel honored to join in prayer with my sisters and brothers in Ethiopia and today was no different. After a time in prayer, the group from Texas brought their greetings and several in the prayer band expressed their appreciation to us for praying with them. We then invited them to join us on Mt. Entoto that overlooks Addis Ababa for prayer, and they eagerly accepted our invitation.
The air was fresh and the sun hot as we hiked to a rock outcrop overlooking the sprawling metropolis of Addis Ababa. Our prayers were for the church in Ethiopia… strength and energy and resources to push back the encroaching religion that is systematically trying to take over Ethiopia. We also prayed for the government and for peace and prosperity. One person prayed that not only would Ethiopia become a strong Christian nation, but that Ethiopia would bring the gospel to their neighbors in Somalia, North Sudan and Djibouti.
The prayers, both in Amharic and English, were powerful. Afterwards, our Ethiopian hosts began to sing and rejoice. Even though we Americans didn’t know the words they were singing, we were caught up in the exuberance and spirit of the worship!
By mid-afternoon we were back at Meseret Kristos where the bi-monthly program for families accepted into YWAM’s Adoption Ministry 1:27 program was scheduled. It was wonderful to see all the mothers and children greeting each other and eagerly waiting for Asegid, their case manager, to share with them from the Bible.
Three of the single mothers volunteered to share their stories with us, and all I could do is sit with a huge grin on my face and silently thank the many sponsors that bring such hope to these families. Asegid led us in a song that we could all sing together: it was simply the word Halleluia sung Ethiopian style, and I loved adding my voice to those around me and worshiping our God together in this way.
Later this evening I will go back to the airport to pick up my good friend and colleague, Wick Nease, and others traveling with him. Wick has a fantastic ministry called Streams of Mercy and has been a strong advocate for the work Adoption Ministry does in Ethiopia. Tomorrow we will attend church at a growing and vibrant church that is also part of AM 1:27 and afterwards we will visit some of the families in our program. It will be a good day!