Our amazing mission team departed for Addis Ababa this yesterday morning. As I write they should be landing after a long 16 hour flight. They will head to the Ethiopia Guest Home for a quick shut eye and then back to the Addis airport to travel to Entebbe. Please pray for their strength and stamina as they then travel 3 hours to Jinja.
As you can see by these photos, the team packed over 60 bags full of shoes from Soles 4 Souls for 400 orphans and 400 of these precious hand made sock dolls. This Saturday will be the best day for these children at Amazima as each one get a brand new pair of shoes and a new doll. (I'm sure the older boys may give their to their little siblings. ;)) The grace and favor of God stayed on the crew as the United staff here at the Nashville airport allowed 4 additional bags for check in with no cost. I'm amazed at how much this happens for Visiting Orphans on our trips. It's such confirmation that God is the author of these trips and He so desires these supplies to get to the children. The picture of the team is of the 13 team members (plus one videographer) who were all leaving from Nashville. They met the rest of the team in the Dulles airport.
Britt and I will head over tomorrow morning, but our trip will be many hours longer as we did not get to fly on Ethiopian airlines. We will be traveling through Chicago, then to Amsterdam, Nairobi and then finally to Entebbe. We were eager to meet up with the team in Jinja and so we are flying on KLM. I bought 3 great books so as not to just feast on the free movies that the airlines offers. My book list consists of Sarah Palin's book, "Going Rogue", Bruce Wilkinson's new book, "You Were Born For This" and John Bevere's new book, "Extraordinary". I am looking forward to filling up with God's word on this trip before being poured out on His behalf as I get to love on these children.
I will do what I can to blog as I am in Africa. Can't wait to share our video we are producing about our trip and the pictures and stories when we return!
I am gearing up for another trip to Uganda. This time I will be joined by CMA artist, Britt Nicole. Britt was inspired by the Orphan's Ticket Home gala that was held in August. This will be Britt's first time on a mission trip and the first time to visit orphans or Africa. We have such a heart full of expectation about what God is going to do on this trip. Bethany Haley, Executive Director of Exile International and great friend of mine will be joining us on this trip as well. It's so neat that God is sending the three of us to Africa together. Little did we know when this picture was taken what God had in mind just a few months later.
My wonderful supportive husband, Simon will be leading a team of 31 people for Visiting Orphans. They are also going to Uganda and we will meet up with them in Jinja on January 3rd, spend a few days workign with Amazima ministries and Canaan Children's Home and then head to Gulu with Bethany's ministry to work with former LRA child soldiers. Bethany's ministry uses dance and art therapy to minister to their traumatized hearts and I'm so ready to be a tool for God to use in this way...
The trip itinerary will look like this:
January 1st, 2010 - Leave the Nashville airport for Entebbe, Uganda.
January 2nd - Arrive in Entebbe
January 3rd to 5th - Jinja working with Amazima & Canaan's
January 5th - Entebbe
January 6th to 11th - Gulu working with Village of Hope
January 12th - Home
Already our home has received 400 pairs of shoes from Soles 4 Souls for the 800 little feet that Katie Davis sponsors through her Amazima ministry. Tomorrow I am picking up 400 sock dolls for these children which were created by another ministry. We've also received 40 Christmas gifts for the street boys in Addis for Simon to take on his trip. Another team member has created 8 full size soccer goals by hand for these same street boys. I can't wait to see the faces on these little boys when they finally get REAL soccer nets! Please keep us in your prayers..that God would send us all in safety and that we would all be willing to step out of comfort zones and be used by Him in every way He desires....
We are so filled with love during the Christmas season as our loved ones pour into us and us into them. Usually we return to the New Year with that wonderful warm fuzzy full feeling that we are loved, secure and that we have a family to call home. But not for everyone…. Millions of children around the world don’t even know it’s Christmas or what in the world that could mean to them. Would you give this love in your heart away in 2010 by traveling to pour it into the orphans of this world?
If so, Visiting Orphans, a mission sending agency, needs you. They have designed trips to lead teams into orphanages all over the world with just this purpose in mind. When you travel with them to Ethiopia you even get to help work at the America World transitional home. They are also offering two trips to Southern China’s Hunan Region! You could return to the region where you once adopted or hope to and invest in the children who may never have the opportunity for a family. You can also visit the wonderful ministry of Amazima on a trip to Uganda. Or visit the children in the port town of Limon, Costa Rica this March who rarely, if ever receive teams to help.
Visiting Orphans is also leading trips to Ecuador, Ghana, Rwanda, El Salvador and Honduras. To learn more or join a Visiting Orphans trip, please click here .
Follow along as I take this mission seriously and minister to the orphans in this world.
Visiting Orphans...It pretty much speaks for itself. Our lives are made to give away to others and I love it that helping orphans is pure and undefiled religion! Follow along as I take God seriously about this mission and minister to the orphans in this world. He is constantly at work in our lives..we just sometimes have to shift our perspective to notice Him. I pray you will hopefully see Him in the words and pictures below..through my perspective.
This blogpage follows the mission trips I lead to minister to orphans in this world. I am the Executive Director of a mission sending agency called Visiting Orphans. (www.visitingorphans.org) I believe my mission in life is similar to the President of Compassion International, Dr. Wes Stafford. In his book, "Too Small to Ignore" he says, "On one side of this international bridge, my role is to minister to the poor, to the orphans, to "comfort the afflicted." And then I cross the bridge, coming back to the Western, more affluent world, where my job is to speak and write and to "affict the comfortable" to call them to action." Loving people on both sides of the spectrum...
I pray that something in my words or pictures will inspire you to reach out beyond yourself...to GO and help the "least of these".