Ok...so I'm THIS excited about going to Africa in a few days:
Isn't that hilarious! I am really looking forward to getting back to Africa. I remember the first time I went (to Uganda and Sudan) I had a hard time at first because I'd spent so much time in Asia where everything went at such a fast pace. In Africa, they ran on their own time frame, they liked to sit and share stories and their lives with one another. Once I got used to it, I very much enjoyed that time.
As I'm writing this, I'm thinking about my friend Samantha who is going on a mission trip for the first time. She's so excited she can't hardly stand it. She's been that way for about a month now. I remember my first trip and I remember that feeling. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE being around people who get to go for the first time. I enjoy sitting back on the trip observing them and watching how their lives are being changed without them even knowing it. I love watching them experience something they've always wanted to experience and had no idea what it would really be like. I'm so passionate about helping the people go who always wanted to, but never thought they could. Then I like to watch their experience. It's an amazing thing!
As I'm writing I'm thinking about how I watched so many special friends of mine who are probably reading this, on your trips. My mom (who is the ultimate girly girl and I never thought would go somewhere where there was no air conditioning), Sheila, LaShay, Lauren, Cody, Martin, Emalee, Laura, Misty, Mama Marianne, David, Anival...and so many more. It's been so exciting to experience these trips together and the way God changed us forever by them.
I'm thinking of a trip to Guatemala where we were trying to dig a water well in the highlands and our drill bit wouldn't go through the volcanic rock...how disappointed we were that we weren't able to provide clean water to this village of people. How we prayed for God to show us all the other reasons he had us there, other than what we thought...which was to drill a water well. I remember the last night how Jennifer, David and Ken and I stayed up the entire last night and all we did was make silly videos. And we made up our "You might be on a mission trip if..." list (I have them on tape...they will surface at some point!) Then I remember the next year going back to Guatemala and drilling a sucessful well....and how God used that as a really special time with me and another friend that changed the both of our lives and our friendship forever.
I'm thinking of a trip to India where we worked with a ministry that rescues baby girls from death in India. (check out their website to learn more about that!) I think I will always, always, always be connected to this ministry for the rest of my life.
I'm thinking of the time when I was absolutely crazy enough to take 24 youth kids to Belize...almost all first time mission tripper's. It was hilariously funny and I learned alot!
There are so many more, each trip I've been on or organized or led have had a profound impact on my life....each in different ways. Most often my life was changed by the people I was serving or learning from, but at the same time my life was changed and touched by the people I went with. There's so much to learn about yourself and others while serving in this way. It's really something you can't describe unless you've experienced it.
So those of you who might be reading and you've never been....sign up next time! You won't regret it!