An Intelligent Plan

My life is full of many testimonies. When I think of all of what the Lord has done, I am constantly reminded of how much He loves me. He has touched me in more ways than one. The story that I am about to share is based on a prayer that took close to ten years to be realized. To this day, receiving God’s answer to my prayers still uplifts me. May it inspire you today and increase your faith.

Unusual Circumstances

According to my mother, the news of her pregnancy came by surprise. At the time, she had been at least six months pregnant and had been nursing my elder brother, who had been born a few months earlier.

Apparently she hadn’t been expecting me due to the fact that whatever drugs she had been taking should have resulted in my abortion.

When she began to feel “unusual”, she made a trip to the hospital. This is when she found out from her doctor that I was on the way. Despite prior circumstances, God in His mercy had kept me alive.

However, the effect of the drugs did not come without its consequences. As the years went by, we would find the memory and logical processing portion of my brain was severely impaired. This would make it harder for me to properly grasp and understand larger concepts in school.

An Intelligent Request

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Me at the age of six

As a child, this pained me deeply because my two brothers were intelligent people and performed well in school. Yet I felt that I could never measure up to them; I would always be the one to come home with low grades. Even when I put much effort into my assignments, it still yielded no positive results.

Because of this, I began to grow timid everywhere I would find myself, even at church. I would hold back from verbalizing, or taking part in any activity because I was scared of making mistakes, and having people laugh at me.

In addition to my brothers’ gifted intelligence, they were also both loved and respected at church and in school.

Meanwhile, I had few friends because I never saw myself as being worthy enough to become friends with my classmates, all of whom I saw as more intelligent than me.

The most beautiful thing in all of this though, is that throughout the years my mother would never stop praying for me. She would solemnly plead with all of my heart, that I would be able to attain the knowledge to catch up on my studies. It was at the age of 13 that I began to join my mother, in praying fervently that the Lord would intervene on this matter.

One Sabbath afternoon, under the leadership of our newly appointed pastor, a prayer session was conducted. Only a few people stayed, my mom and I included.

As the pastor went around the group, we each began to present our prayer requests before the others. When it came to my turn, with tears in my eyes, I requested that God would give me intelligence.

After that day’s prayers, I expected to see a huge difference in my life. Sadly, this would not be the case. I did not see any immediate improvement in my learning, in fact, it seemed to only grow worse. I still had difficulty getting good grades in all of my classes.

Reason to Rejoice

When I completed Junior Secondary School, now known as Junior High School (JHS) in Ghana, the results were so bad, that I was not able to be admitted into any Senior High School (SHS) in the country.

During this same period a Seventh-day Adventist SHS was established in my region. The school administration didn’t seem to care about my results, but rather, still afforded me the opportunity to study there.

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Here I am, in my junior high school days

After I graduated from this Seventh-day Adventist high school in 2005, my elder brother (who was in the United States at the time) told me that it was my father’s desire that I join the two of them in the US. However, first thing was first: I had to find out what my SHS results were. In the meantime, my brother encouraged me to pursue hairdressing, while I waited to hear back from my school. So in 2006 I enrolled in beauty therapy school.

Although I was now in my 20s, I was still timid and intimidated around intelligent people. However, things slowly started turning around for the better. My first exam in the school gave me an experience I had never had before.  For the first time in my life, I received a mark of 76% on a written exam. I was so ecstatic that I could not keep from rejoicing.

Some of the students in my class had received marks ranging from 90 to 99 %, yet still insisted that they deserved higher grades. But not me. I was more than content with my mark. I thanked God immensely and even called my family to give them the good news. From this point on, I started doing well on all of my class tests and exams. This was a big boost of confidence for me, and helped me not to become so discouraged when I found out that my SHS results were poor.

Standing Ground

Due to the current circumstances, I decided to remain in the beauty therapy program and forgo plans to travel to the U.S. The program duration was for six months, so I ended up graduating in November 2006. Then, I began working as an intern in somebody’s saloon and various other beauty therapy places to upgrade my practical skills.

In 2008 I had a desire to go back to beauty therapy school to further my education. However, before then one of my classmates  told me that it would be too difficult for me at that level. When I heard this, I had trouble accepting it. I asked myself: “Why not? Why can’t I do it when others are?

So I did. And in 2009 I graduated first of my class in beauty therapy, not without a few accolades behind my name. My school then employed me as an instructor. It was great work, but I soon found that working as a beauty therapist was conflicting with my beliefs as a Seventh-day Adventist, especially in regards to Sabbath work. In fact, working on Saturdays seemed to be a general requirement for a lot of the places I had considering working for at the time.

As I was contemplating on what to do, another issue at the school arose. One of my coworkers began to pressure me to give certain students in the class high marks that they were not deserving of, in exchange for payment.  Out rightly I refused, so this same co-worker convinced these students to send complaints about me to the administration, in order to ensure that I was fired. Eventually, she succeeded, and I was asked to leave my position after having worked there for only six months. Regardless, I did not see this as a defeat but rather, the beginning of my success.

Reaching New Heights

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In 2011, I started remedial classes in order to retake my SHS examination. I wrote the exams, as I said this prayer within my heart: “God I’m writing this once again and whether I pass or not, I need your help to qualify for the next stage of my education. So I don’t know how you will do it, but I know that you will. I will be going to university next year. 

A year later, I received my results. As I looked it over, tears of joy sprang to my eyes. I had done well in all of the subjects, with the exception of mathematics.

Now, I had to make an hard decision. I had been impressed of the need to study something other than beauty therapy; something that would not directly conflict with my beliefs. My younger brother suggested the rehabilitation program. When I went to visit the school to find out more information, one of the lecturers kindly advised me to try enrolling into the Special Education program.

By this time, I was 26 years of age. The lecturer personally walked me through the online registration as well as all the necessary processes. I wrote the exams and God in His own way saw me through and granted me admission at the University of Education-Winneba to pursue my Bachelor’s degree in Special Education. God willing, I will graduate in November of this year.

Divine Purpose

IMG-20160201-WA0006Coming from a place where I was seen to be the least intelligent in my class, to now being able to have the opportunity to inspire and educate others, is truly a blessing. My own classmates tell me of how they see me to be extremely brilliant, and they are encouraged by my example.

I am amazed to witness how beautifully the Lord has been orchestrating events in my life. He helped me to chose the right program that has made His purpose for my life so much clearer, and has also placed me in the right position where I can be of much use to  others. I am counting on the Lord to see me through my last few months in school, as well as grant me success and victory.

Now I can stand in public and teach, with no fear or intimidation whatsoever. Today, I request the prayers and support of whoever may be reading my story….I also want to encourage you as the reader. You may be going through some difficult times, when it may seem as if all hope is lost and that your prayers are not being answered.

My dear friend, never give up and trust that God will fully reveal Himself in your life. I do not know where I would be today if it had not been for the prayers of my mother. I am inspired to know that God has a mighty plan and a purpose for creating me, and that in time, it will come to pass. May you also be motivated by this grand truth. God bless you!

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Ruth Adjoa Ackah
Ruth Adjoa Ackah

Ruth Adjoa Ackah is a beauty therapist and a final-year student at the University of Education in Winneba, Ghana. She will graduate with a bachelor of education with a special focus on Special Education in November 2016. Ruth enjoys reading and sharing the Word of God with others.

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