Oct 20, 2010

I have arrived!!!

Johannesburg International Airport
I have officially arrived in Johannesburg, South Africa! After a 24+ travel day, I am now sitting in the main baby house clicking away on my laptop alongside on of the other volunteer aunties, Lisa listening to a few babies fuss while the nighttime aunties attend to them.
Talk about surreal!

Thank you for praying for my travels, although all of the flights were full I had wonderful seat-mates, I was able to get good sleep, find my flights and all of my luggage arrived intact! After I made it painlessly through customs I waited for an hour or so to be picked up by Lindsay (the volunteer coordinator) and Lisa, we grabbed some dinner and headed to the main baby house in Glenvista which is southwest of Johannesburg (I think!). As for now, I will be here at the main baby house sharing a room with Lisa and another volunteer named Sue. Lisa is a 23 year old graduate from Wisconsin and Sue is a grandma from the UK. They are doing some construction downstairs on our rooms but things should be settled in a few days.

It is beyond wild that the Savior has allowed me this time to serve. I am very excited and have no idea what to expect. This past Sunday I had the privilege of sharing my story with the congregation at VBC and sing with my brother, Daniel. I can honestly say I have rarely felt so blessed and encouraged in a matter of a few hours. Thank you to those of you who shared your encouraging words and for the many of you who purchased a cookie, cupcake or journal. I will miss you all but I am so very excited to share this journey with you.

While I traveled today these lyrics ran through my head over and over again:

  1. I need Thee every hour, most gracious Lord;
    No tender voice like Thine can peace afford.
    • I need Thee, oh, I need Thee;
      Every hour I need Thee;
      Oh, bless me now, my Savior,
      I come to Thee.
  2. I need Thee every hour, stay Thou nearby;
    Temptations lose their pow’r when Thou art nigh.
  3. I need Thee every hour, in joy or pain;
    Come quickly and abide, or life is vain.
  4. I need Thee every hour; teach me Thy will;
    And Thy rich promises in me fulfill.
  5. I need Thee every hour, most Holy One;
    Oh, make me Thine indeed, Thou blessed Son.

I can only imagine how more true these words will become for me as this adventure has officially begun it's South African section. May these words grow ever-increasingly more true for you as well! Love you...

Oct 2, 2010

This is for reals...

I can't believe that, Lord willing, this time next month I will be posting from Johannesburg, South Africa...another continent, yo!

I had such a fabulous day with my sweet family today. I took Isaiah and AJ to the build-a-bear workshop, held baby Noah for at least an hour after his first sponge bath and had a relaxing (and very delicious) dinner with Dan & Em while skyping with my mom and dad who are celebrating their 33rd wedding anniversary. I am one blessed little lady!

Today at the build-a-bear workshop with the boys, I chose to record a message for each one to be tucked in their little bears to remind them how much their Auntie Colie loves them. Just as I pushed the record button to start recording a huge (and unexpected) lump rose in my throat as my eyes smarted with tears. I am going to miss these boys, my family, my life while I am away.

Although I am completely blessed with a "love the ones your with" kind of mentality that will help me dive into live at DOH I know that this adventure I am embarking on comes with costs. High costs. Worthy costs, but high ones nonetheless. I am going to miss Isaiah excitedly sharing his latest idea or request with his little nose pressed against mine. I am going to miss AJ's sweet and encouraging words that come from the sweet mater of fact i-love-you-for-you place in his heart. I am going to miss Noah's first smiles and laughs, missing out on getting to watch his personality shape firsthand. And that's just with the boys!

I could go on and on about who and what I'm going to miss (pumpkin spice lattes and Em's shortbread cookies, for example) but I know that serving the One I love most comes with a cost. There are things I must forfeit in pursing this adventure. But He is worth it. His glory is worth it all. I believe and I know it... I think I just needed to remind myself tonight.
18 days and counting...

Sweet Baby Noah Jordan sleeping with his little half-grin -- less than a week old!

Our futile attempt at a group photo using my camera phone

Their bears sans the Star Wars outfits they picked out for their bears

He is just so sweet! I really can't get enough of him...

Emily's jam shortbread cookies that she whipped up in 15 minutes flat!

The Journey of Surrender

It is a pretty spectacular thing: watching a family be born right in front of your eyes. To see years of prayers answered in a moment. ...