Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Prayer Requests

So we are a week out; I'll be in NY next Monday and then I leave for Uganda next Wednesday evening. There are so many last minute things to do, I feel like I'm running around like a mad woman! But for all the things on my to-do list, there is one that is the most important. If I'm not spiritually prepared then no amount of completed tasks will matter.  I can't go alone-I need all of you to continue to join me on this crazy adventure. Here is a quick list of prayers that are needed right now:
  1) Safety during travel: To NY and to Uganda
  2) Health: I've had a little bit of a cold, and I suffer from migraine headaches. I'm hoping that I will be healthy for the whole time I am there.
 3) Unity for the team I'm with: I will meet some of the people in NY and then the rest of them when I get to Uganda. Please pray that we would communicate well, encourage each other, and that we would be effective and courageous in what God has called us too.
  4) One or two Ugandan girls I can form really dynamic friendships with and minister too on a deeper level. 
  5) Please pray for courage for me-to fully embrace everything God wants to teach me and show me and do through me; and the courage to let go of those things that may keep me from the abundance of life He offers me. 

I love this prayer by St. Francis Assisi-this has been my prayer for the last few months: 

"Lord, make me an instrument of your peace, 
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy;

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; 
to be understood as to understand; 
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive; 
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; 
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life."

Thank you all so much for fighting alongside me. It means more to me then I can express. 


Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Countdown Begins

First off: a HUGE, GIGANTIC, ENORMOUS Thank You to all of you who have joined in supporting me financially and in prayer!! God has been doing some amazing things already and I'm so excited to see those continue. I am so blessed to get to walk and fight alongside such an incredible community!

There are 25 days until I leave for New York; 27 days until I am on my way to Uganda.

I am a strange mix of elation and pure terror. People keep asking me how I feel about it, or if I’m excited and I really don’t know how to respond. I’m both nervous and excited, thrilled and terrified and quite honestly stressed out.

I feel like I should be using this incredible gift of rest time in between graduation and leaving to be preparing, but how do you prepare for an entirely new world. I walk into this experience having read about the Ugandan culture, the climate, travel dangers, what to wear, what to expect; and yet on some level that is a great deal of knowledge one can only attain through the experience.  It is an entirely different thing to feel the dirt beneath my feet then to read about what dirt is like.

So I am both prepared and yet unprepared all the same. This some times overwhelms me because I like to be in control and have all the answers. I like my comfort and security and there is hardly a thing about this that says either of those words. I’m going to be uncomfortable, I’m going to be a mess and I’m starting to feel like that is where I am supposed to be.

Messy, broken, deeply human.

I hate to admit that I lacked faith, but when I thought about having to raise funds I was nervous.  Even as money started coming in, I was still fearful. God has been so incredibly faithful through this entire experience and has provided, through many of you, in such awe inspiring ways.

So now, my nerves that are coursing through my vains, a mix of fear, adventure, and pure adrenaline, find their solace in a really BIG God who is holding me together and letting me break all at the same time.  A God who provides even when I doubt, a God who shows up for me every single day when I don’t always show up for him, A God who loves me in spite of all of my humanness. That is the God who is on my side.  That is the God who is going before me and going with me.

A God who is perfect love in every way.

So for those of you who want to know if I am nervous? excited? The answer is "yes". But I am mostly desperately needy and hungry and coming to the realization (once again) that I am very very small, but it is when I reach the end of Lo, the end me, that God meets me and exceeds all of my hopes and all my dreams once again.

Thank you all for the prayers, they are appreciated and much needed-please continue!! 

Love you all.

What I'm reading: "The Jesus I Never Knew" by Phillip Yancey & "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years" by Donald Miller

What I'm listening to: "Wedding Dress" by Derek Webb & "Only After You" by Sixteen Cities