West Africa

                       06 Dec 2007


Recently, on a visit to West Africa, I met a beautiful young woman. She is not only beautiful on the outside but beautiful on the inside as well. Please greet my friend, Clarice. In the short time that I was able to be around her, Clarice demonstrated to me a true Proverbs 31 woman. Come with me and get acquainted.

Clarice lives with her family in the small Toura village of Dantomba. Her husband, Zo, had such a change in his life after coming to know Jesus that Clarice wanted to know more about this Jesus.

Then, a young white woman moved into the house next door. They slowly learned to communicate with each other. Susan knew this Jesus. Clarice was amazed that Susan would leave her home in the United States to come and live in her village. Clarice decided she wanted Jesus too.

Clarice and Zo have three children, Jacob, Anno and Rebecca. She loves and cares for her family in tangible ways every day. Look at that beautiful smile…even with a heavy load of wood on her head!

Look at 5 year old Anno copy momma with her wood!

A favorite food is made with mashed bananas. On this day she was making these as a special treat for us. Notice her happy children and watch and listen as she carefully explains and shows me how to make this recipe…

Clarice is anxious for me to meet some of the women and let me see how they live. Aren’t these baskets something? The women weave them in all sizes. When Clarice is around, people are laughing … her happy heart is contagious! It was important for her that I meet her mother. This is momma with Clarice and Rebecca.

One of the important responsibilities that Clarice has is making palm oil to sell in the village. In order to do this, she and Zo take their children and other family members up into the mountains where they have a field. On this day, she had a lovely surprise when her best friend, Susan, came to see her. Once again, Clarice becomes the teacher explaining what she is doing. Watch and listen….

Making quality palm oil is hard work and takes several days to accomplish. Clarice knows exactly what to do. Her family works with her to get the job completed so that they will have oil to sell in the village

A most important part of Clarice’s week is Sunday when she can pause from work, put on her nice clothes, stop by for Susan, and walk to Bomba to church. Zo and Steve have already gone since the men and women don’t walk together. Singing and learning more about God is so necessary to this young mother. Her heart’s desire is for her children and her family and friends to see Jesus in her life and believe in the One who gives her joy, peace, and hope.

Will you pray with me for Clarice as she studies God’s Word with Susan? Will you pray for Clarice as she models Jesus before her family and friends? Will you pray that the Holy Spirit will give her divine opportunities to lovingly share Jesus? Will you praise God with me for sending Susan and Steve to this village? Will you praise God with me for Clarice and what God is going to do through her in bringing the Truth to the people of Dantomba? Will you commit to pray daily for Clarice and her family?

January 2001


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