It’s Independence Day weekend … and in the morning we’re leaving our comfortable surroundings for a week-long mission trip in Chichicastenango, Guatemala. This time, “we” means Greg, Cate and me. Ben is splitting his week between two grandmas.
Honestly, not traveling as a family of four was my biggest hesitation in committing to this trip in January. But I kept hearing God say, “Go.”
So that’s what we’re doing. When we step out in faith, we don’t always see the whole picture. Five months ago, I wasn’t sure why God was telling us to go now. But then in his goodness, I got to see a glimpse of the master plan. We’re preparing to bring a baby home this fall. I won’t be available to go to Guatemala for the next several years.
God knew this.
I know there could be a thousand other reasons we’re supposed to go now. We may even get to see some of those reasons this week. Or we may have to wait. Regardless, we believe God has called us to do this.
I’m most looking forward to experiencing this mission trip with my husband and my 8-year-old daughter. None of us have done anything like this before, so to do it together is especially exciting. I’m eager to see Cate interact with the other kids in our group and the ones who call Guatemala home.
We’re taking 50-pound suitcases packed with clothes, school supplies, soccer balls, and toiletries to donate. We’re carrying-on our own stuff in smaller suitcases and filling our backpacks with things we think we’ll need throughout the week. But no expectations are packed.
I don’t know what to expect, but I want to be open to whatever and whoever God has for us there.
In recent months, I’ve emailed with Katie, who works for Compassion International as a donor relations manager. This trip to Guatemala isn’t a Compassion trip, which is a thing. Katie and I initially connected in December when Greg and I made a donation and she called to thank me. I emailed her again a few months ago when I was trying to make meeting our Compassion-sponsored girl Roselyn, who lives in Guatemala, happen while we’re there. Sadly, that wouldn’t work out with our mission trip schedule and Compassion’s travel guidelines.
But Katie has been praying for my family as we prepare to go to a country she loves. And she emailed earlier this week to check in. The encouragement and sincerity in her words was so good for me. To know someone I’ve never met in person has invested themselves in our trip has reminded me how God’s Kingdom works.
And then she said this:
“When we are able to approach life and the opportunities the Lord gives us with open hands rather than tight-fisted, he fills those anxious places with so much joy and peace in His presence. It is certainly not an accident that you all will be on this trip, and I know He will work in and through you.”
Y’all, that is my prayer and hope. If you think about us this week, please join us in prayers for our family, for Ben and his time with grandmas, for the people we’ll meet and serve, for the missionaries who live there full time and have given their lives to this, and for traveling mercies.
People have asked what we’ll be doing. We’re going to build three houses, distribute clothes and food, and help with the ministry’s wheelchair distribution program. If you want to join us in specific prayers, below is information about the families for whom we’ll build houses.
I’m looking forward to bringing home stories to share with you. Thanks for being on this journey with us.
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