I should be editing right now, but I wanted to take a minute to share what's on my heart these days:
I leave in 2 weeks. I really can't believe that it's finally here. I've been preparing for this trip for what seems like forever. Now the time has come to pack my bags and go.
I am truly amazed how God has provided the funds for this trip. I have raised over $1000 just by selling headbands! I just want to say THANK YOU to each of you that helped me! I am blown away. All along the way, God has provided exactly what I needed! Just yesterday I got a check from someone who saw my headbands and sign about my trip in my husband's store. I don't even know them, but they gave me exactly the amount I needed for shots today. I didn't know where that money was going to come from! People I hardly know have helped me the most. I have been left speechless more times than I can count. God has used this to stretch my faith and I haven't even left yet!
For those of you who don't know, I am going to Ethiopia through an organization called International Crisis Aid. They have many projects all over the world, but in Ethiopia their main focus is rescuing girls from sex trafficking. My heart broke the first time I realized how rampant and wide-spread this horrible injustice is in Ethiopia and all over the world. The men will go into the Red Light District and invite the girls to come to a party that we will host. At the party we will have the opportunity to show the love of Christ to these girls and tell them that they can get out of this life. We'll also get to talk to the girls who have been rescued and are in safe homes. To say that I don't think I'm ready for their stories is a huge understatement. I don't even know how to prepare. There is a feeding clinic we will work in as well. In case you haven't heard, starvation is extremely widespread in this region. Drought and war have ruined their crops. How do you prepare yourself to see starving children? The reality is sinking in now. They won't be mere faces on a piece of paper that I can ignore. They will be real and right in front of my face. I will touch them. I will see their pain.
Having this knowledge before me everyday puts things in a different light. I know Africa will change me. It already has. I just came back from the grocery store with all kinds of scrumptious food. My fridge is full with milk, bagels, cream cheese, fresh fruit, veggies, leftovers and our freezer has even more food, including ice cream. I have so much.
I have much; I give little.
I could go on and on, but I'll end with asking for your prayers. I know that I am powerless without the Holy Spirit moving and working through me. I know prayer works. I have seen it time and time again. I am praying that God brings many people to Himself. He doesn't need us, but He chooses to use us. Prayer is a huge part of that. If you are interested, I am putting together a prayer list where people can sign up to pray for us for one day while we are gone. Email me if you would like to be on it. I can't tell you how much that would mean to me.
I thought this song was fitting for this post. It's about Africa.