Because of our ministry travels Laurie and I occasionally spend part of a holiday at 30,000 feet on our way to or from a teaching mission. This Valentine's Day finds us on our way to our second mission to West Africa. We put the word out a couple of weeks ago regarding how exciting but daunting is this opportunity.
By way of review, we were in West Africa in 2012 teaching select Christian leaders in an area that is the epicenter of religious violence. When we were there we were invited to address a small group of Christian lawyers. They invited Laurie to return and teach them biblical peacemaking to help them set up a mediation center where Christian lawyers can use God's love and biblical principles of peacemaking to reconcile people, including conflict between the religious groups. We spent the past year or so working out the logistics of returning to teach key Christian leaders (John's role) and train Christian lawyers (Laurie's role). I have also arranged meetings to commence a campus apologetic ministry in this country through the auspices of Ratio Christi ("the reason of Christ"), the organization that has appointed me as its International Director.
When we secured the dates to return to West Africa in February, Laurie was hopeful to have twenty Christian lawyers sign up to attend her week-long training, while I was told I would be teaching 15 select Christian leaders at a separate location. It turns out that I may now have 25 Christian leaders to teach, and Laurie has more than 100 Christian lawyers attending! We now have four suitcases each filled with books and syllabuses, and will need to put extra books in our two personal suitcases to get all the materials to West Africa. Please pray all our luggage arrives with us safely.