Sunday, September 27, 2009

AFRICA!!!!

Okay, I am actually here in South Africa. A land that I have always wanted to visit! I feel like I have gone to the ends of the earth! It is so beautiful, but there is something so familiar about it! It really reminds me of California. I have seen huge calla lilies (like the ones I used to have growing in my backyard in San Bruno), seafoam statice, birds of paradise, and California poppies! The weather is very similar to San Francisco. The first day we were here it was sunny and warm. The next day it rained all day! Today has been windy, but sunny. I have really loved all of it! Yesterday we drove to Hermanus Bay to a whale festival. We sat out on the cliffs and watched all the whales swim by. I couldn't believe how beautiful it was! I saw 2 mothers with their babies. Today we went to church at Westwood Baptist Church. The service was amazing. The service was about sacrificing all to Jesus...not giving Him the left overs. Then we got to go to our classrooms to set up for VBS. Tomorrow we start! I am so excited to meet these kids and tell them about God's love for them. I know the enemy is not happy about us being here, because we have already experience things being stolen, and a few injuries. I am not sure that I will be able to post pictures after all, but I will get some up when I get home. Well, right now I am sitting in an internet cafe, and it is time for dinner. I will try to update again in a few days! God is so good, and I am so happy to be here for Him!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

God is always so good!

I want to share with you about an opportunity that I have been given this year. Actually, it is an
opportunity that I have been given before, but this is the first time I have accepted it! Let me start by
giving you a little background info:
About a month after we started going to our church here in Georgia (and about 3 months after we
moved here in 2005), I listened to a lady talk about a trip to South Africa that she just got back from.
The purpose of the trip was to help run a Vacation Bible School for kids in a poor township outside of
Cape Town. She and her family had been doing this for 15 years at this point. I remember her talking
about loving on these kids and teaching them about Jesus, and looking at the pictures of the sweet
faces, and I turned to Jon and said, “Someday I would like to take a trip like that!” Well, over that next
year, I got to know Tracie and her family better and was invited to go along the following year. I really
wanted to go, but fear held me back. I wasn't ready to travel internationally (which at that time I hadn't
done yet) or leave my family for 12 days. Again in 2007 I chose not to go, even though I knew in my
heart that God wanted me to. As most of you know, 2008 is when Jon, the boys and I lived and worked
in Turkey for a month. God dealt with a lot of my fear issues on that trip. On our flight home, Jon and I
had many hours to sit and debrief the trip. I really felt God tell me that I was to go to South Africa this
year. I felt it so strongly, and yet when the trip was first brought up to me again about a month ago, I
was looking for reasons not to go. The fear was rising up again. There was also the possibility of
another ministry trip that Jon and I might be able to do together, but at this point that has not come
together, and I've decided in any case to not let that stand in my way.
The group that is going to South Africa has needed a helper for the first grade class (which is the age
group I LOVE to work with) and here, a month later, they were still looking for this helper. Again, I
heard God tell me that I was to go. I do feel like God kept anyone else from filling that position so that
I would be able to do it. Jon and I talked about me going and prayed about it. I wanted to make sure
that he would be okay with the kids for 12 days while I was away, and I wanted to know that he would
support me in doing this trip. Which of course he does, because he has wanted me to do this for the past
few years! I have a great husband! :)
So that brings me to the reason for this letter. I have decided to go. I am asking you to please pray for
me while I am away. I will leave on September 23rd and return home on October 4th. This is the first
trip I have taken by myself and the longest I have ever been away from my family!
I am really excited to see what God has planned during this trip. I can't wait to spend time with these
kids and teach them, and also see what they have to teach me!