TIA: This is Africa. We sometimes use the term when something doesn't go as planned. We use it more in a jokingly matter, when things could only happen in Africa and no where else in the world. TIA.
So last Sunday was a TIA kind of day. Moise, our day worker, took us on an outing in Conakry. My friend, Melissa, and I waited an extra 15 minutes for Moise to show up the gate to take us to his church. TIA. When we thought he was not going to show, we decided to take a stroll down the street to find a church. As we walked by the round-about, Moise jumped out of a taxi, in his traditional dress, ready for the day. We ended up at a local church called "Amor de Dieu" meaning Love of God. We danced in the front and sang a few songs we knew in French. The sermon was preached in the loudest decibel possible. TIA. I take these moments (when I'm distracted) to pray for the Church. Pray for it be strengthened. The building we were in was just half full and knowing Guinea is majority Muslim, the need to pray for believers. Prayed for our patients who have come to know Christ, that they will have a place to worship without persecution. Prayed for each of the little ones that dared to come sit on my lap during the sermon, a welcomed distraction of course. TIA.
Church ended about 1pm, it started at 9am. We were a hour late to begin with. TIA. We took a taxi for just a few miles down the street when Moise decided it was best for us to get out. The taxi driver would have charged us 25,000 Guinea francs instead of the 1,500 (what we paid) to go around the peninsula that Conakry sits on to get to the coast. So we not only cut through a neighborhood, but also a wedding reception to get to our destination. At the end of the street, there was a local djembe (drum) shop, so Moise and I took a few minutes to try these djembes out.
Moise, Melissa, and I returned to the road that was the short-cut to the main road. Yeah, no road names. TIA. We walked through the neighborhood as kids played and women cooked outside on their porches. As we walked by one home, the lady of the household invited us to have lunch with her family. She had just made mango chutney- it was still on the fire when we took our seats. They made us feel so welcomed and thanked us for the work Mercy Ships was doing for the people of Guinea. TIA. It was a delicious add on to our bread & banana lunch and an end to another amazing experience in Africa.
This is Africa. This is a place I have fallen in love with over the four years and four countries I visited. These are the people I have been called to experience life with and love for this time.