Why do I feel so guilty about coming back to my blog "haven" after having not posted in awhile? I honestly think it's because I want it to be so much more than it is right now. It's supposed to be my place to share...dream...teach...laugh...cry...scream...praise...all in words! I've been doing lots of ALL of that lately...just not here. Let me share a bit of what's been going on.
Back in the winter, my sweet friend and spiritual sister, Lorie, invited me to join her on a mission trip to Liberia, Africa to help lead women's retreats for a couple groups of precious Liberian women. Can I just say that no twisting of my arm was required, because this encompassed my calling and my passions: speaking, teaching women, sharing Christ's love, and Africa! Shortly after committing to the trip, Lorie continued to build her mission team while I began the process of raising financial support for me to be able to do this...mission trip funds were simply not in our budget this year. God was faithful! He provided every last dime that I needed! He. Is. So. Good!!! Throughout this spring, Lorie and I have been meeting weekly to prepare for this retreat, and she secured a couple of other dear women to make this journey with us. Excitement surrounding this trip and God's plan for us in this continued to mount! Fast forwarding a bit...
In ways that only God can do, He shocked all of us (Lorie and her husband included) a few weeks ago when he re-opened her womb after 7 years of unexplained fertility, and have given them the blessing of a new life. Yes! She's pregant! In all of the pregancy excitement, I momentarily forgot that this might mean she can't go to Africa. But, that's exactly what it means. While we still don't know what God is up to, and why He would choose to restore her fertility now right before we are scheduled to leave for this trip...I know that He is Sovereign and in complete control! He has a plan and purpose, and the rest of us on this mission team are still going to fulfill that purpose for Him. He has too much He wants us to share with these women, so we are going to do what we've been called to do in the land where He has called us! (Lorie: get ready for 2011!)
So...with all of that said, I've been a bit overwhelmed (in a VERY good way) preparing for this trip. While I also work outside my home at a summer camp and conference center, you can imagine that leaving to go to Africa the day before summer camp is set to begin brings a little anxiety. I have lots to do to prepare to be gone from work, to be gone from my family, and to prepare for these Liberian retreats. But...just you wait...upon my return, I'll probably have more blog posts than you care to read about over this adventure and journey that God is allowing me to take. I am completely humbled that He would choose me to serve Him in this way.
In preparing for this upcoming trip, I've been praying that God would give me specific scripture verses to cling to and take with me - written down separately - on this trip. So, whenever feelings of inadequacy and fear creep in or doubt or questions of why I'm doing this...I can immediately go to these verses and be reminded of what He promises in His Word. So, in preparing for this 10th memory verse of the year, he showed me something pretty amazing...I have beautiful feet! Bet ya didn't expect to hear that vain remark come out of my mouth did ya? Actually, it's based in scripture (my chosen verse for this second half of the month):
Romans 10:15b (NIV)
How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!
According to this, I have beautiful feet, because I'm on my way to Africa very soon to share this good news with sweet women! Woohoo! I just love God's word! This verse actually comes from Isaiah 52:7 also, but in that context, mountains are also referenced, and since I'll be on the African coast (away from mountains), I thought I'd stick with the Romans wording. Ha! Ha! Any of you clinging to a specific verse right now? I'd love to hear it. What are you working on memorizing?
I pray that the rest of your weekend is most blessed as is your upcoming week. I would love your prayers over our team for this trip and for the women that we will be serving. We leave on June 5 and return June 14. Thanks sweet friends!