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Purpose, People, and Product (Pt 3)

By Richard Willis | | 0 Comments

Sankofa Out of Africa
Purpose, People, and Product
3 Minute Blog


After twenty years of an unbelievable journey, with peaks and valleys, it’s easier for me to understand the importance of the first ten years. While I was focusing on success stories, God was more interested in the heart, focusing on teaching me not to judge, and to be patient and quick to forgive. Additionally, He was touching the hearts of a few Ghanaians, changing motives so doors could be open to build relationships of trust. Thanks be to God, some Ghanaians allowed me to see their culture beneath the surface. Based on my observations, I learned that the love of money, lack of trust, and short-term thinking are buried deeply in their hearts. The love of money is a big problem, at all levels, breeding corruption and placing an emphasis on influence, value, status, position, and more. Most Ghanaians are hospitable and kind because it’s anchored in the culture. What’s also anchored is manipulation to use the hospitality and kindness to get money, especially from foreigners. Most will never request the money directly. Instead, they will paint a picture that demonstrates need and then wait to see if the foreigner responds favorably, giving from the heart.
The lack of trust applies to Ghanaians and foreigners. Ghanaian to Ghanaian, most distrust is anchored to the love of money. Ghanaian to foreigner, distrust is due to colonialism. By the way, foreigners don’t trust Africans. Short-term thinking is directly related to poverty. Remember, my experiences are with people who are struggling to meet basic needs. Granted, it’s more complex than what I am writing. However, these are some key problems that adversely impact relationship building. As a servant, my patience is needed while God deals with the heart issues because it’s impossible to build relationships on solid foundations with such barriers. When I think about this on a larger scale, it explains why vast resources have been and continue to be
wasted trying to help Africa. Over the years, governments, organizations, churches, individuals, etc., have donated countless financial, human, and other resources to Africa to help needy Africans meet basic needs. And yet, today, famine, poverty, under-development, and more continue to stalk many
parts of the continent. This proves that money and other resources, alone, is not the answer. The way I see it, it’s okay to help people meet immediate needs. If someone is hungry, we should feed them, but this is short term. If we want to help them long-term, we need for God to deal with the hearts of foreigners and Ghanaians, while both sides display patience, forgiveness, and a lack of judgement. It’s this foundation that will give us the opportunity to help restore Africa to its greatness. I am so thankful that God has planted Sankofa International, Inc. so we can help long-term. 

 

Footnote: For the story behind this journey, please read “When My Feet Touched the Ground – A Matriarch’s Prophesy”. Every dollar raised, from selling the novel, is used to support Sankofa projects.
Click HERE to purchase the novel.
To be continued…

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By Richard Willis

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