February 3, 2014

Adoptee Restoration Goes to Africa!

Many of you read My Story this past summer.

And you cried at times. 
And you rejoiced at others.
And you related.

Before I started this blog…
I shared parts of my story in another place. 

Today, I want to tell you about this place and how I ended up there.  

In 2007, while wrestling with several decisions, God spoke to me in the quietness of my heart. He gave me direction to say no to various  opportunities that had been presented to me at the time, and focus on writing. He said He would  “take me to the nations from my laptop.”  I had no idea how He planned to do that. But I knew it was His voice.  I obeyed that instruction, and waited to see what would happen.

In the next month,  a missionary from Brazil who I had never met before came to our church to share.  He said that God gave him a message for me.  “Go home and pack your bags!" he said.  "You’re going to the nations, and the purpose will be to speak to women!” I thought, “Okay God, here I am." I have to confess, I didn't pack my bags that night.

A few days after that missions service, Dr. Bill and Barbara Kuert, missionaries to Kenya, connected with me.  It came about due to a set of circumstances that began as a result of a series of blog posts I wrote! (Yep, there it was... the "I will take you to the nations from your laptop!")

Dr. Kuert invited me to speak at a pastors’ wives conference in Africa and to also be the keynote speaker at the Assemblies of God national women’s conference in Kenya. (Thousands of women attend this conference each year -- traveling many miles to get to the event that takes place in Nairobi.)

None of us could predict just how powerful those meetings would be, or how they would change not only their lives but mine.  

I shared about abandonment.

And, most important, I shared about HOPE.

Bringing their pain to the altar...what a powerful night.

As I opened my heart to women 8,000 miles away, God’s grace and power rained down upon us and did amazing things.  We experienced miracles in front of our eyes. The altars were packed each night as women brought their pain and loss, seeking a healing touch from God. So many received.

I never imagined myself having this opportunity even once! And yet I stand humbled and amazed that I have just been invited to come for the FOURTH TIME.

With every post I write here, I aim to give understanding.

I don't make a habit of asking for help for me here personally, but today is a day I'm going to.

There's no pressure, at all.
Simply an invite.

I’m asking any of  you who may feel a heart-tug about this, to help me carry the message of hope that is on my heart, back to Africa.

Pain comes in different forms...

and happens in different places...

but it is universally understood. 

People relate to loss and grief and the struggle to forgive or heal no matter who they are or where they live.

The story has yet unfolded. 
It's a story of forgiveness, grace and healing. 

God wastes NOTHING. 
I can't wait to see what He's about to do.

Working with my interpreter, sharing with the national women's leaders

I usually take one person along to help me. They also have opportunity to share their heart, to pray with people, and do whatever is needed to assist on the trip.

My son Jordan is going with me this time. This year’s conference is November 10-14, however we will stay longer, preach at different churches, minister to their pastor’s wives and women’s ministries leaders, and reach out to the children and families in the slums of Mathare.   Each time I've  gone to Africa I've had the honor of ministering there, at the New Mathare Valley Church and their center for children.  We take gifts with for the women and children, that friends help us gather, for them.

There will be so many different opportunities...a packed schedule of making a difference as much as we can while we are there. 

Preaching at one of the services

Although I have been invited to come, this  is  a missions trip and I must raise the funds to go, as I am ministering to those who do not have the resources to bring me there.  So I do what it takes to get to them, with a little help from my friends. 

These young adults from Mathare keep in touch with me all year long.  I adore them!
Please pray for us as we prepare in all ways for this trip, and remember us in your prayers while we’re actually there.  

I will be giving updates online while there as much as possible and will have a special Facebook page to share with those who are praying and supporting us and have particular interest in what we're doing there.

Thank you for helping me take some of the same words of hope that have blessed many of you to the people of Africa.

Here are instructions to give if you desire to help:

Giving is easy on line through this link at www.cctb.us (our church website). Be sure to signify that your donation is for Kenya Missions.


Send a check to: 
Celebration Church
Attn: Kenya Missions 
 16235 Lake Magdalene Blvd.
Tampa, FL 33613

Make the check out to Celebration Church and in the memo, mark your donation “Kenya Missions”.    

You are so appreciated and loved.  Mean it. <3