God’s plans for my time with the Amani women unfolded in ways that I couldn’t have planned. It was abundantly more than I had asked for or imagined.
I had originally only signed up to be a hostess. I thought it would be great to meet some women from Africa and invite them to stay in our new “girls” room. Then I felt called to help with the tour which ended up including a very special tea time for the P31 staff and Amani team. Each day held a special assignment specifically planned by God.
On the day after our tour of Charlotte, I dropped off Stella and Mary, the women staying with us, at the church. Several volunteers were there helping set up the boutique where the Amani products would be sold after the fashion show. My friend Lisa invited me to join the women for prayer and a light lunch. I had planned to catch up at work that day and return that night for the fashion narrative, but I sensed God had other plans.
Only it wasn’t the invitation to go pray. Oddly, I sensed that I was not supposed to go pray with the women. Instead I felt God telling me to roll up my sleeves and start working. I was kind of disappointed. I really like to pray with friends and I really like to eat with them, too. But there were clothes, tote bags, jewelry and crafts all over the place in the church atrium. So I started sorting and hanging things. During my time helping I overheard someone say they needed another steamer to get the wrinkles out of the clothes the women would be modeling that night. Hmm, I thought, surely I know someone with a steamer. I made a few phone calls and left messages.
I had been working for about an hour when my stomach started growling really bad. I had finished hanging the huge box of clothes I was assigned to so I walked over to where the food had been served. The women were just finishing lunch. As I took my first bite, my friend Lisa stood up and asked who could stay around to pray with the group. I hadn’t missed it after all! I quickly finished eating and moved into the circle of women to join them in prayer.
We spent the next 30-40 minutes praising God for who He is, thanking Him for all that He had done and asking for His anointing on all that He would do during the night as women came to hear the stories of women who had found the God of all hope, who had been rescued from darkness and despair, and called to declare His glory and praises. It was a time of listening to His spirit lead us in worship through praying together. It was beautiful and my heart overflowed with thanksgiving.
God knew just where I needed to be, and when I needed to be there.