August 03, 2010

Africa, Day 8, Part 2

7-16-10  In the airport

From the first customs check we went to the ticket line, which was quite long for us being there 4 hours before the flight left, and it was moving quite slowly.  We finally made it through the 2nd customs checkpoint and to the front of the line.. about 45 minutes later. 
Then we were told the computer system for all of Delta (worldwide) was down and it would be 'a while.'  A while ended up being hours.  Some of the hardest hours I've ever sat through.  In the midst of the waiting Jake pulled out the guitar and we sat on our luggage on played and sang (what seemed to be) our 'theme' songs for the trip - the Ewe song we learned and How He Loves.  That Ewe Song makes me feel closer to the culture and I absolutely love it... even though there were tears filling my eyes it was a comforting song to sing in the midst of the chaos of being stuck in the Accra airport for an indefinite amount of time.  After two hours the Delta people decided to start checking everyone in the old fashioned way - writing tickets out by hand.  So after we got through that fun we headed upstairs and through the other three security checkpoints.  After the last one Jake & I were told we couldn't board yet because our passes were manually written out.  So we sat and waited while Matt boarded the plane.  About 45 minutes later a man came and took our manual boarding passes and walked away, presumably heading downstairs.  Another 30 minutes later I had to ask Jake to just pray.  I was tired.  Emotionally spent and hanging by a thread.  It was thirty minutes past our 1:00am boarding time, our passes had been taken away and we were still not being allowed on the plane.  So Jake stepped into the amazing authority that he has and right in the middle of the chaotic waiting area, he prayed.  We closed our eyes and went to a place where all we could hear and pay attention to was the presence of God and he prayed.  It was such a comforting place and I truly felt the peace of God overwhelm me. 
Shortly after Jake prayed we were able to board the plane!  When we got on the plane, the look on Matt's face was filled with joy, and as soon as I sat down in my seat I lost it.  It was the first time the three of us had been away from each other the whole trip and it wasn't easy.  It was almost two in the morning.  I had been running on four hours of sleep and had been feeling emotions stronger than any I have ever felt before and I just reached my breaking point.  I was so happy to be on that plane, I didn't care if we weren't even moving yet, just being on the plane made things feel better.  But it also made things worse.  It meant we were actually leaving.  The tears just kept coming and it felt good to let it out.  I cried until I couldn't cry any more and the boys were there with me through it all, praying for me and reassuring me. 
I ended up sleeping for about 3 hours of the 10 hour flight.  The tears came back now and then, whenever I would think about Jeremiah, Jake and Matt.  I would think about how thankful I am for our amazing relationships.  I would think about how thankful I am for the peace that God gave me on this trip.