Today was Day 1 that Jerry and I have been in Sierra Leone with the wonderful team of Jeff Bice, Mark Mattay, and Robb & Shirley Miller — but really, Day 1 (and Day 2) began at 7am Jan 10 when we left Tyler to begin the journey across the big pond. Getting to West Africa requires flying somewhere in Europe first (about an 8 hour flight), and then flying south (another 8+ hours of flying). With layovers, flight delays, and the normal craziness of getting to a foreign land, it took 35 hours to get “door to door” — and it’s worth every minute.
Sierra Leone is 6 hours ahead of Tyler time. But with the jet lag from the above referenced travel, none of us know what day, date, or time it is anyway. So Jeff, our Missions Pastor, wisely planned a beach day to give us all time to acclimate. We visited my favorite beach in the world that the locals call River #2 (because it comes after River #1 up the road). A little sun, some splashing in the waves, and eating fresh grilled barracuda were mixed with some deep theological, personal, and spiritual conversations. It’s just the refreshment our bodies and souls needed to begin the week ahead. Tomorrow we will visit all 5 churches that Bethel supports. I can’t wait to worship with these people of joy. They sing and praise with full abandon from the depths of their souls. Thank you, Bethel, for the significant investment you are making in Sweet Salone.