We are so excited to welcome our summer missionaries back today! Their flight will be landing this afternoon and heading back this way by this evening.
These six girls have been prayed for so much by the North Side family. While members have been praying for each ones, one morning we also gave all worshipers the name of one girl that they were specifically supposed to pray for. It’s been neat to have different people ask me how one of the girls was doing and if there was anything specific to pray for.
A few weeks ago, I drove through miles of farm in West Africa to a medium-sized village. The road was incredibly rough as we navigated through crops. As we approached the village, I saw a sight that would have been worth the entire trip.
In the middle of a circle of dirty children and working women, I saw two American college girls who looked like they belonged. Rolling some “peanut butter balls” in a dusty bowl, Cassie and Samantha looked like they lived there.
In reality, they did live there. The six girls in the above picture have spent their entire summer in a hut in the middle of the middle of the middle of nowhere. Feeling the call of the Holy Spirit on their lives, they “lost” a summer they could have spent building their resume. The last two months could have been spent taking more classes to get ahead for graduation, working a job to earn money to spend on frivolous things, or interning somewhere to work up a vocational ladder. Instead, they immersed themselves in a land that is one of the hardest places physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually that I’ve ever been.
All of them have been sick. They have probably missed certain comforts from time to time. The conditions have been rough, and the people there are very far from God.
And yet they followed. They said, “yes.” They will never be the same and never will those people. Seeing each of these girls serve was one of the highlights of my life. Each of these girls are dear to our family (the boys can’t wait to see them again!), and we could not be more proud of them. Having them at either the church house or our house diving into God’s Word and discipling them has been a huge honor. To have them in our home when our daughter was home just reminded Amanda and myself of how much of family they truly are. To be able to serve beside them and to hear them speak the language and know the people so well was something I will never forget.
I am honored to say I know such legends as these godly women. Welcome back, but know that the trip is not over.
He’s just getting started.