I feel odd writing about a mission trip which is still a couple months away, but I’m learning to not think that way. There is so much to do in preparation for the trip. I remember back in Ecuador, when I made the decision to go I was immediately overwhelmed with how many things needed to be worked out. God assured me that He would work out the details. I just needed to trust and obey. That means I trust God to lead me as I complete the tasks set before me.
First, I need to raise enough funds to be able to purchase my plane ticket and the mission board (IberoAmerican Ministries) requires that I have my first two months funded before I arrive in Ecuador. (You can give online here.)
Second, I need to go through all my earthly goods and decide what I’ll take with me (very little), and what to get rid of (a whole lot). Thankfully, one of the Encounter youth sponsors from DFCC has kindly offered some storage space so I don’t have to get rid of everything. I can keep that special tea pot, my funky desk chair and all the warm clothes I won’t be taking with me — not that I’ve used them recently, anyway. But I do still need to have a mega sale at some point.
Third, I need to gather teaching materials to take with me to use at the school. Just last Sunday, one of the singers at DFCC loaded me up with a tote bag full of ESL teacher’s guides and a promise of more materials to come. Fortunately, school supplies can easily be obtained there with funds from my ministry budget, so I don’t have to use my suitcase weight allowance on crayons and construction paper.
You can see how, once again, God is faithful in providing and I haven’t even mentioned all the hugs, words of encouragement and prayers or the family who committed to monthly support back in December. Well, now I have mentioned them.
I think sometimes we tie ourselves up in knots when we have a need. I’ll share a need with my church friends, but don’t actually expect them to stop and pray right then. Many times I’m shy or embarrassed that I have a need or a request and I beat around the bush mentioning why the need is important. I forget to actually ask “Lord, I need…” I forget the promise of “ask and it will be given to you” (Matthew 7:7).
I love the simplicity of the story of blind Bartimaeus’ encounter with Jesus:
“What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him.
The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.”
“Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road. (Mark 10:51-52)
I find it interesting that the request is not phrased as a question and the word both Jesus and the blind man used is “want” not “need” … Well, in the English NIV version … but that might just be me getting complicated, again.
The simple truth is I believe something powerful happens when you get to the point where you can humble yourself before the Almighty and just ask.
Here are some things I’m requesting:
- A roommate for Sarah
- Energy to get things done