Nov 9 - First Conference Day

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Last night the power went out at 11:30 pm - and stayed out for 9 hours. I had a pretty bad night being hot and being eaten up by mosquitoes. Normally there are hardly any mosquitoes this time of year, but the past few days it's been overcast, with a few raindrops here and there. It never rains in November!

I was glad to hear that at least

our guest pastor from Austria - Gerhard - was able to sleep well. He only had about an hour between arriving and the power going out. It was enough time to give him a quick tour in the dark. He gets to live in the little apartment we built upstairs but unfortunately the fridge is not working for some reason we can't figure out - even when the power is on ;-).


Gerhard chose not to eat with the kids today - so he'll have his Malian food experience another time - but Hama (handicapped) could hardly wait to say hello to him, and I love how excited he always is.

As for me, my day was absolutely crazy, as you can expect when organizing a conference, with so much not going the way it should, and things not working out, and kids not doing their part. I was glad that in the end I actually succeeded in having lunch and sitting down for a few minutes.

121109aAt 2:30 pm everything was supposed to be ready for the first session - but of course it wasn't. At least we managed to pray at 2:45 pm as planned. First walking around, then holding hands in a circle.


121109cAt 3 pm we got started. As expected, at first there were only our kids and a few neighbors' kids, but the longer the meeting went the more people came. Paul did the first part of praise time - with Bambara songs - and then I did the second half, with French worship. I had spent much time printing songbooks in the morning as I found out yesterday that our projection program is malfunctioning.



121109jI was doing the third and last song (after LORD, YOU ARE GOOD and LIGHT OF THE WORLD) which was YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL BEYOND DESCRIPTION, when it started hailing. It wasn't too bad, and the tents protected us. Then it started raining, and more and more wind came. I was interpreting the rain spiritually and encouraged everyone to not be distracted but worship God, when suddenly the tents over us were blown away and our equipment was soaked in rain.


121109kWe started running inside, saving everything we could. Half of my new songbooks didn't make it (later many were refound, and it wasn't as bad as it seemed), but our equipment is okay.



121109oWe were absolutely stunned as this kind of weather simply doesn't exist this time of year! What was going on? Was there any significance to it? How to interpret it? I asked Gerhard whether he still wanted to give his message, but he decided not to. So after the rains let up, we let people go, and our kids were soaked and had to change clothes.  Once the rains were letting up, I was also able to go to my house. To some degree I was glad to have a longer break, though I failed to lie down for a short nap and instead worked on videos, pictures and the blog. I sure was tired though.

At 6 pm Gerhard came over to send his emails and to have dinner with Paul and me. We had a good time talking, and time went by way too fast. At 7 pm we gathered in our dining hall to pray together before the next session. Some street kids were already gathered. Our car with the people from the old neighborhood arrived while we were praying - in time for the meeting. Paul started it off with a time of praise - I was expecting some dancing and upbeat praise, and that's what happened. We were all dancing like crazy and having a good time. I was devastated to find out later that all the videos and pictures were deleted by a kid pushing the wrong buttons on the camera. It's sad that I can't show you. I had an awesome time, though I had to stop one street kid who is known for trouble and who was very much in the flesh.

Then I started leading French worship, and did some prophetic singing. Some of what I said Gerhard later actually repeated though he had not understood what I had sung, so that was a great confirmation. I sang about the power in the name of Jesus, and how Jesus wanted to set people free tonight. It was a good worship time, though so many don't know how to worship which can be frustrating.

Then I introduced Gerhard before he came up to preach. He preached in German, I interpreted into French, and Paul into Bambara. It was an inspiring message, and the first 10 minutes I looked at Paul asking him whether he thought what I was thinking, that Gerhard was actually preaching to us personally. He smiled.

Some people were getting tired, though it only lasted till 9 pm, which is when Gerhard started praying for people. Nearly everyone came up to receive prayer, and it took a while. Gerhard had preached on dreams for our lives, and God being able to do more than we could even ask or imagine.

Paul and Joseph were pretty tired after the meeting - and with reason, as they had worked hard all day. I was actually proud of most of the children for their hard work and great behavior today and recommended them for it. It was really time for them to get to bed, and the street kids also quickly occupied their space to sleep - inside where the evening meeting had taken place.

While everyone went to bed, Mama Hawa doesn't have the luxury; I had to go to my office and - tired or not - make sure I'd chronicle the events of this year's conference. Plus there is so much to still do. Tomorrow we start at 9 am - me not being a morning person, that's going to be a challenge. And the poor kids have to repair the tents a second time, as there was a second storm later destroying everything again once it had already been repaired. Even the two lamps on top of our gate were destroyed by the storm, and they had already survived 5 rainy seasons!!! You can watch the storm right here:

I hope to be going to bed soon, and to be sleeping better tonight though I already know the power is gonna go out soon because of the lack of sunshine today.


H2TNI is a non-profit organization incor-
in Georgia, USA, with a 501(c)3
tax-exempt status. H2tNI is a part
of the
apostolic networks of Che
Ahn, Randy
Clark, and Bill Johnson.