when i was in high school i planned to go with a youth mission organization to zimbabwe, africa on a summer mission trip. after arriving at boot camp i just couldn't hack it. to this day i am not sure what my problem was but for all the wrong reasons (fear, boyfriend at home, etc.) i quit and came home. i regret that decision. at some point in my walk with the Lord He gave me a heart for missions and for africa. i don't know in what capacity or when He may do something with that little portion of my heart but it has never changed. so here i am some 15 years or so later heading out to the highlands of peru.
in many ways i feel like i did before giving birth to my first child- it is going to be more wonderful and more challenging than i can comprehend at this point so let's just go! we will be traveling to lima and then to cuzco and from there we will travel to the rural village where we will serve the peruvian people. my role is one of assisting the dentists who will be caring for the villagers' dental needs. i will sterilize instruments, assist procedures and will also help with the food prep for our entire team. that last part sounds like it might be a big job but i feed six people daily so feeding 10 seems not too different.
while we are there we are taking a couple of days to sight see. i mean, it's not like i go to peru any ole time so we have to take in as much as we can while we can. we will ride on a train, stay in a hostel and even climb to the top of that big rock in this picture of machu picchu. i am assured that if i can hike the grand canyon then i can do this.
it is very strange to leave ross and the kids here. somehow i have a false sense of security when we are all together. leaving means not being able to control anything. this trip is forcing me out of any comfort zone i have clung to. i am not fearful or concerned for myself but i am tender for my family.
henry has been a little nervous about me going. he asked me if i would be killed for talking about Jesus. i have never been one to tell my kids, "mommy will always come home" or anything like that because nothing in this life is guaranteed. if i were to not return i would not want the last thing i say to my children to be a lie, even if it were unintentional. when henry asked this i simply responded with, "i hope not." i told him that if i were killed for telling people about Jesus then it would be a great way to go and that no matter what he would have to trust that God had not forgotten me. he then went on to ask me what would happen if my plane crashed in the water. in my head i was thinking, "wow this is a really morbid conversation." i again told him that i hoped that would not happen but if it did he would have to trust that God is good all the time. to which he replied, "all the time God is good."
it is hard to go and yet so very exciting at the same time! i know it is an adventure of a lifetime. it is an opportunity to live out what God put in my heart long ago. it is a chance to see people, in much different circumstances than i, coming to a saving knowledge of Christ. it is a chance to bring physical relief to people in pain. it is a change to see first hand what God is doing in the lives of the peruvian people. it is a chance to take part in a work that God is doing. it is a chance to see that life is not just about me or my little corner of the world.
Lord, You are greater and more mighty than i can even imagine. Your hand has stretched out further than i can fathom. You have invited me to take part in Your work and so here i am. break me. change me. mold me into the vessel You created me to be.