We have been attending a new church, and love it. A couple of weeks ago the pastor stopped and chatted to us as we came into church. My first random thought was "that's cool", (the last time we spoke to him was a year ago when we were introduced, and he remembered us). Somehow our conversation led to South Africa, and before we knew it he asked if we would be interested in incorporating our trip back there with a missions trip, as they are sending some people back this summer. He gave Josh his e-mail and told us to go pray about it and talk about it and then let him know. We were both very excited about the prospect. We had originally wanted to do a mission trip as part of our trip back to South Africa, and this seemed to have landed in our laps. We talked and prayed.
My prayer went something like this: "I don't know how, or if this will pan out like my deepest desires hope that it will, but what it reminded me of is your faithfulness and provision, always. Lord thank you for the reminder. The reminder that you are faithful, and that when we go to South Africa it is because you provided for us to go." I realized whether this trip happened or not, this would be what I was walking away from it with. An awesome reminder. An awesome promise.
So Josh sent off the e-mail. And then we waited.......and waited. By the following Sunday we still hadn't heard anything. During the sermon my friend Jess wrote me a note saying "Jim didn't get the e-mail". So after church we tracked Jim down to make sure he was aware that we were really interested. Josh gave Jim his number and he told us to think of dates that will work for us, and then he would call later that afternoon before the board meeting to talk more about it. So we figured out the dates that would work, chatted to Jim and then waited....again.....
Monday afternoon Josh got the call.....and..... we are not going. This trip is apparently a scouting trip for the church, and the board felt that the four people already going were enough to scout. However Jim assured us this is not a "no" but a "on pause", if the church decides to get more involved in doing more missions in South Africa, then there would be more trips. And so we are back to our original plan of saving and hoping to go in December.
I was not as bummed as I thought I would be. In fact I felt totally at peace. And when I was puzzling over the whole experience, like why would such an exciting opportunity come along only to immediately fall through. I could say I don't get it.....but I kinda do, cos I am walking away with the knowledge, peace and complete confidence that God is in control, He has a plan, and He IS faithful. And so if the sole purpose of this experience was to remind me of that, then that's worth it to me.
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
So our summer plans remain to head up to Canada for a couple of weeks. Our good friends, Jess and Dave may be joining us, with our puppies, Moose and Emmi....watch out Canada!