Friday, May 26, 2017

This is going to be epic!

"Are we there yet?"

That's a question we expect to hear a lot over the next month and a half. Why? Because we are heading out on a nearly 7 week road trip.

During this trip we will either pass through or stop in each of the following 20 states:

Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia

That's 40% of the states in the U.S. during one trip over just under 7 weeks.

This is going to be epic!

During this trip we will see family and old friends, meet with pastors/church leaders, preach, share about our mission, see new places, have fun adventures, witness some friends get married (Polly is actually in the wedding), go through security training, missionary training and missionary renewal, be commissioned as appointed missionaries with the Assemblies of God World Missions and even attend a district council.

This is going to be epic!

During this trip we will travel dozens of hours over thousands of miles. We will sleep in at least 12 different places, meaning 12 different beds. We will pass three holidays - Memorial Day, Father's Day and Independence Day.

This is going to be epic!

But in order for this trip to be epic, it needs one more very critical thing: prayer. That's why I'm writing this blog. We desire your prayers covering numerous things as we embark on this epic road trip. Will you pray with us?

Below are some of the specifics areas about which you can be praying for us, but also please feel free to pray for other areas as the Spirit leads you. I have broken down the list into sections to better organize it:

1. Spiritually
  • That during a crazy, busy schedule we would make time to spend in prayer and Bible reading
  • That we would be sensitive to the Holy Spirit for opportunities to share the love and hope of Christ with people on our journey
  • That we would look more like Jesus at the end of the trip than the beginning
2. Physically
  • For health - we will be traveling so much and interacting with so many people; also, we will have to work harder to find/create time to exercise and will be eating out more than usual; we need self-control
  • For rest - we will be sleeping in different places and running on a different schedule than the norm and driving a lot of miles
  • For safety in travel - we will be traveling a lot of miles with a lot of other motorists; we are driving an older van with nearly 200,000 miles on it so prayers for the van to experience no mechanical issues would be great too
  • For good weather - for travel and personal protection and enjoyment
3. Relationally/Socially
  • Interpersonal family relationships - we will be traveling a lot of miles and spending a lot of hours together
  • Family - we will be seeing family we don't often see and even meeting family we've never met, including our 1-year-old niece
  • Friends - we will be seeing old friends and making new ones
  • Those left behind - we won't be seeing my Massachusetts family during the trip and will only see Polly's Pennsylvania family near the beginning and end; the kids will also be leaving behind their close friends they've made here for the duration of the trip
  • The right connections with the right people for the right reasons
  • That we would be a blessing to others and be willing to be blessed by others
4. Emotionally
  • Spending lots of time together, especially in a car, lends itself to a range of emotions; we must be careful how we deal with and express those emotions
  • The flip side of seeing old friends and making new ones and all that excitement is the inevitable "see you later"
  • Patience, patience, patience - we will need lots of patience
5. Mentally
  • To stay awake and alert as we drive
  • To grow and learn so much from others and especially in our trainings
  • Clarity in mind and thought as we make travel and other decisions
6. Financially
  • For great gas mileage and great deals at hotels (thankfully, we will be spending very little time in hotels)
  • For God's blessing over those who generously give to our budget which covers the travel and training expenses
  • That the offerings/donations we receive on the road would cover the travel expenses
  • For God's blessing over those who have graciously offered housing and/or meals during this journey
7. Ministerially
  • For great services when we have the opportunity to preach/share
  • For great meetings with pastors/church leaders
  • For favor as we learn things that will help us in our ministry here and in Bolivia
Thank you so much for your prayers! We're so excited for this trip but also a little overwhelmed and stressed. But we know that God goes with us and we trust Him to bring us through. This is going to be great. With God, this is going to be epic!