Friday, August 9, 2013

4 countries, 4 states, 6 weeks

SO......i'm the worst blogger ever.  As you can see, I totally skipped the month of July...oops!  I actually spent about 6-7 weeks traveling outside of Togo for various reasons.  First, I headed from Togo to Ghana in order to fly to France and joined a group from my home church (Sojourn Church, Louisville, KY) for a missions trip.  It was an awesome time of getting to see and meet people from home while serving the Lord in another place.  I would LOVE to talk about what we did in France, but actually, I can't. :-)  The organization that we work with is involved in ministry that is better left.........a little under-cover.  BUT pray for the missionaries in Southern France--God is doing a great work there!

Other than my family, I think these 2 miss me the most!

My niece Harley- now 2 years old! She was a few
months old when I left the US

After a week or so with my church, I was able to meet up with some close friends and explore Southern France a bit, and return to Switzerland to visit my old stomping ground where I did language school for 5 months.  It was all a sweet time mixed with a little western life culture shock, but I was thankful for it.

I then headed to the US where I had the opportunity to see my family.  My sister Patti actually had NO IDEA I was even coming to the States, so I dressed up as a Starbucks barista and totally surprised her!  It was probably the BEST surprise E.V.E.R!! (see my facebook page for the video!)
I got the chance to see my nieces and nephews who had grown so much since I left the US.  My nephew Luke, 13 years old, is now taller than I am!  The time went fast, but I savored it, as the trip to the US was unexpected.

After a few days in Louisville as well, I headed off to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, which was actually the purpose of my trip to the States.  As I have spent about 15 months in Togo, I realize that this is where I would like to continue to serve the Lord with the skills and heart He has given me, in both medicine and for the Togolese people.  I decided to start the process of becoming an official long-term missionary with ABWE (Association of Baptists for World Evangelism), which is the organization that runs our hospital.  As most of you know, I am currently employed by Samaritan's Purse.  This organizations supports my expenses on the field and any money raised goes towards ministry expenses (like the Pediatric Benevolence Fund).  In April, my time with Samaritan's Purse will end and I will be leaving Togo to return to the U.S. and continue to raise support.   If I have 50% of my support raised by July, and 85 % of my support raised by November, there is a chance I could be back in Togo by January 2015.   Of course, I realize that God has bigger (and often different) plans than I can often see, so I am praying for patience and flexibility through this process!

This is a picture of all the new ABWE heading to Togo in the
next few years.  Pray for all of us as we start pre-field training
and support raising!
I am hoping that some of you might prayerfully consider joining me on this journey through financial support.  In order to come back to Togo, I will need $3500 per month of committed support.  I'm looking for people who can start supporting now and those who could also commit to starting in April.  I'm praying that some individuals and/or churches may give $10 per month and others $500 per month.  Follow along in the months and year to come (with my fun thermometer on the left side of my blog page) and see what can
happen when we join together!  The Lord has gifted us and equipped us in different ways, and I look forward to sharing more with you in the months to come, of how you can be a huge part of Christ's love being shared here in Togo.

Thank you SO VERY MUCH to those of you who have already supported me throughout my time here: care packages, encouraging e-mails and letters, finances, PRAYER, and so much more.  God provides for me daily through YOU!

Grace and Peace