Oh December 1st, how you come like a thief in the night. Sometimes I turn around like “Where did this year go?”
And then God whispers and reminds me of each time we sat together, each murmur, each whisper, each clinging, each forgiveness. He is so dear like that.
This year has already been a year of Big Faith. Go read that post. It is so insightful as to where my heart has been this year. For years I’ve felt a need to serve women. Earlier this year, I knew it was women of Uganda, but the Lord said wait. I have things to do first. He was lining up people, sorting out our family and our move, working behind the scenes when I was just waiting. Waiting, oh that word. It is always active, never passive. When you know the God of the universe is at work while you wait.
In my bible study all semester my prayer requests have been this: To find my passion and mission. I’ve felt like I had lost it. I’ve been weary, exhausted. I’ve been a little lonesome. Some things were going well, but something just wasn’t right, you know?
Then, I had an opportunity last month to set out my beads from Uganda and share a few of the women’s stories (and our families) with some new local friends. It was a fundraiser for TEAM Faith, a new friend’s ministry to cancer patients and their families. And God showed up and my passion came roaring back, one answered prayer.
I didn’t intend to share so many details, but I just had to give a little background into what I experienced this past week.
Tuesday, I spent collecting food and driving up to my best friend’s house to fill her freezers. I’ve spent the past few months praying for her and her family. See, while we were in Uganda last fall, God was pursuing her heart to consider adoption again for their family. This time, instead of through foster care, internationally: Chinese special needs. He showed up BIG TIME and from first picture and match in early February to Family Day in middle of November, warp speed was the tune (though, when you’re in it, even 9 months feels like torture!).
Then, right before take off, news of a smaller grant got handed down. We set up a page and watched God move BIG! Like, crazy, big, fast, just plain BIG.
Then the plane got delayed a day coming home and, oh I have been there, disappointed and weary and so I was able to give thanks on Thanksgiving and get on my knees to lift up my friends. The next day, I was getting a report on our first day of ministry in Uganda, and how big God showed up. How He is our strength when we are exhausted. He is our purpose. He will get the paperwork and the website done. Because this is how He works. Through His people who have open hands that say: we are here, use us.
Saturday I received the Kirabo Seeds newsletter. With a handwritten note from our child we sponsor, a beautiful newsletter and a note about how they are considering and praying through homeschooling the children because of the education system there. Would we pray while God works out the details. Yes, of course.
Yesterday, my husband led worship at our church and it was such morning of praise. With my oldest daughter by my side it was hard to keep the tears back, thinking of what looking down a lifetime of ministry might look like, what my friend newly home with her daughter feels like, worshipping next to my nine year old, after losing a pet that morning before church, the blessing that is.
After a beautiful sermon on the Feast of Booths, it was go time. Tear down of our makeshift place of worship. Split up, hubby takes kids, I have to run and grab a lesson I’m teaching this week because a friend of mine (that is in our homeschool co-op and will miss dearly) is literally on a plane to Uganda with her hubby and 3 children and we get to teach her class (get this, on Christian heroes and missionaries) the last three weeks this semester. I think I’m just handing off a key and getting a lesson, but I forget she left some boxes of homeschool material to sell or use. It’s a blessing!
When we think of serving women in Uganda, we think of family preservation, orphan prevention, education, sustainability and job creation. But most of these women already have children, so we want to pour into the little ones as well. And these books she left for me, the women, going to become a missionary, she left me books I can give to my Ugandan friend to teach these children! She didn’t even know!
Not five minutes later, I get a text from a friend who runs a ministry that empowers women to serve Jesus in their every day lives, serving people right there in their community. She has boxes and boxes of homeschool and educational materials, she says please go look through it, it was donated to them and they can’t use it, they’ve tried to give it away. I figure, might as well. I want to be home in the cozy warmth watching a christmas movie with my kids and decorating the christmas tree. But, well, I can’t resist.
I get there to find classroom sets of beautiful classics. Teachers manuals for teaching English (what we prayerfully will do for these women), manipulatives to use with the children! Excess of what we can use in our ministry, but definitely enough to serve both this and the Kirabo Seeds kids! Even our homeschool co-op! God is a God of abundance when you are working in His will. Many times that abundance is simply His presence, His provision not just monetarily, but passion, purpose and persistence. He gives time when we feel like we have none, energy when we’re wiped out, friendships we didn’t know we needed.
I sat in that truck, packed so full, praising God for being who He is. We haven’t even ‘launched.’ I have literally only told 3 women who have been praying and of course Eric as he’s been involved. But God is already meeting needs we weren’t even sure of. I spent this afternoon after I had finished our homeschool day talking to the two Ugandan women who are seeking to serve the Lord in this work. I watched as God brought our hearts together. How He is the center of this work. How there is joy.
I sat back after a Sunday of running errands and watching God work refreshed and ready to meet the week. This week of Advent kick-off! Of Longing to see our savior! Won’t you join me? And maybe consider joining us as we work to serve Him through vulnerable women. Email me at worthyofourcalling [at] gmail dot come to learn more on this #GivingTuesday!