Friends are an amazing thing to have, and I keep getting prodded and encouraged to write again. So, in my desire to know how everyone else is, I will put myself out on display and share where things are at with Reach Global. This is still just the starting phase, but hopefully this will answer some of the questions. My desire is to sit with each friend I have, drink coffee or go walking through the woods, and hear what is on their heart. How, really, is your family doing? And your ministry? And the projects you’ve excitedly started, and the difficult places in your heart that God asks you to go? My thoughts right now are with the network of friends and family that I have around the country.
Writing one blog post is easy. Putting myself out there over and over? Not so much.
Sitting with my friend Menda and drinking coffee, she asked where I was at in my my planning process, and what does leaving Alaska look like right now. I shared how I was overwhelmed with the details of becoming a missionary, and all the things that need to be done, and probably was missing the big picture. I’m moving in less than 100 days, and need to get rid of most of my things (again!), and I need to start the process of support raising, and decide all the places I am going to drive to while in the States over the summer and fall. And and and, I have already pulled out my Spanish workbooks again, read some of the books recommended for those jumping into ministry, and have people walking with me and praying…but really, where do I start? The big picture is that I have a vision to tell other people’s stories, and I am floundering a bit trying to find words for mine.
Menda suggested I just be honest. Start here, now. So, here I am, now. Fresh faced, and ready or not, I’m diving in.
There are a few months left of my job here in Port Alsworth, and it is currently a struggle to not let myself get lost in the daydreaming. I so desire to be present, and fully pour out all that I have for the students I am working with. Pray for me. Once the transition starts (which it has), it’s difficult to remain fully present. It says nothing of the love I have for my community and the people I see every day. It’s just one of those pains of transitioning.
I need to make some decisions about where to go this summer. At the present moment, I am planning to drive from Anchorage to Seattle, down to Long Beach, CA and over to Riverside. After a few weeks fully soaking up California, I’ll head to Vail, CO and Denver. Later in the summer, I would very much like to visit the east coast, and at least spend some time in North Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland. In all honesty, I have been craving a true road trip now for about 8 months, so I think this necessary one is a sweet thing. My daydreams often land here, as I imagine reconnecting with old friends and making some new ones, drinking sweet tea and having warm feet.
I am going to start sending out a monthly newsletter— it’s better to start now than just when I get down to Costa Rica! If you would like to be included in a mailing list, send me your email address. I am not sure how long the support raising process will be, and am doing my best to be incredibly flexible in my mental planning. I have been recommended a few books on the subject, but any current or former missionaries or ministry workers who have suggestions, please make them! I would be grateful to soak up any wisdom.
Alaska is very brown right now, but the days are getting longer, bit by bit. This is one of the mildest winters on record, but the darkness is still difficult to bear. I am beyond grateful that the season is changing, and I shamelessly claim my Californian birth right now as I am completely Vitamin D deficient. The children and adults here alike (minus the one other Californian in this village) all crave snow and colder weather. I realize that it is probably a good thing that God is calling me to be down in Costa Rica, because every time I hear such talk, I get a bit resentful and possibly even teary.
There are so many things I’ll miss about life in Alaska— not only the broad, wonderful outdoors and views, but the relationships and family I have here. Teaching art, piano, and art therapy have been such a privilege. I love when children (particularly the ones I live with), come to my bedroom door and ask to art journal with me. I love that they call my bedroom my “lair” also. I love the women who have let me come into their lives, and the dynamic of camaraderie that this community has. I’m pretty sad to miss out on an Alaskan summer, because there is truly nothing like it on earth! But I am also beyond excited to have some California/Colorado/East Coast summer too.
Okay. There’s me. Tell me about you. Send me your email, and I’ll learn quickly how to use MailChimp.