My name is Autumn Buzzell and I live and work in Ghana, West Africa with City of Refuge Ministries. Here, I run our school, Faith Roots International Academy, and get to be a part in rescuing and the healing of children who have been trafficked into the fishing trade, orphaned, abandoned, and those who just need a little extra loving. What an amazing gift this life is!

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Monday, July 1, 2013

Calling to Prayer

I had a doosy of a week.  It was beautiful and full and busy.  But, it was a doosy.  And I walked away reeling.

A few weeks ago, I had written on my blog about my struggle with anxiety since John and Stacy have been gone.  You can read more about it: here.

And yesterday, I had another dose of some serious anxiety. 

It is completely frustrating because it is not something I have ever faced in this way before.  This curl up in a ball, butterflies in the stomach, heat beating, hard to breathe--anxiety.  It is frustrating and debilitating and overwhelming.

It started out with just a little niggling sensation on Sunday morning.  I had spent the better part of Saturday morning shouting to be heard over 300+ children, so when Sunday morning rolled around, my throat ached with the stress of Saturday's adventures. 

And then the thought came in my head that with Andrea needing to be at the airport that night, I might have another negative police encounter (which seems like they keep happening on the days when I am most overwhelmed and stressed...arggghhh...sometimes I just wish I blended in better here in Ghana so that I am not pulled over based on whether I'm wearing closed-toed shoes, or have side-reflectors, or whatever other nonsense they want to throw my way).  And the anxiety rushed in.

And really, that was just the tip off point.  Then come the words of the Liar...how I'm not capable of running this place...why would this responsibility be placed in my hands...the care of the volunteers...the frustrations of loss of staff...the weight of our children's futures...the day to day battles...the run through my head at warp speed...the lies...the lies...the lies...

And so, after a really fantastic church gathering, I was sent to my bed to literally wrestle my fears down.

It feels so physical.

The attack so brutal.  So emotional.  So encapsulating.

And when we left for Accra, I asked all the volunteers to be praying for protection, for release from the anxiety.  And then, when we arrived in Accra, I called my mom and cried my way through the mall trying desperately to explain the weird physical symptoms that were really just manifested emotions.

I think I am tired.  I think I'm worn thin.  But, I think I'm also being spiritually attacked.

I am calling you to prayer.  I am asking you to pray protection over me, pray against anxiety and fear, and pray for God's covering over City of Refuge.  We have seen so many taken down with malaria, with frustrations as it nears the end of the academic year, with weariness...we need prayer that God will be our strong tower, our covering, and our shield.

Will you be praying for us here?  Will you be praying for me? 

And how can I also be praying for you?

I am calling you to prayer as James 5 asks us to do:

13 Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.

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