So, I totally failed on my 12 step goal to post a new blog post at least once a month last year.....sigh...thankfully God is very forgiving!
Sooooo, I'm sure all of you are on the edge of your seat just dying to know the latest things that God is doing in this path to Peru! I know I always am! I shall now fulfill those long awaited desires to be in the know! Ready??? Here goes!
Since I returned from Peru last July until just recently, the main thing that the Lord has been doing has been aiding and directing the Leadership and the Outreach Commitee at my church with getting all the formal procedures figured out, created, and documented to then be more formally and better prepared to take on the full responsibility and role of a "Sending Church." This process has involved creating an evalution process for anyone within our body who may in the future also feel led to the mission field. I will be the first member within my church that we are sending out to the mission field, so we have really sought the Lord's direction and guidance as we formalize and document what it really means to be a sending church. I was then evaluated based on that process - first by the Outreach Committee, then by the elders at my church. In case ya'll were wondering, they all are in agreeance that this is truly the Lord's will for me and have committed to helping me, guiding me, and completely partnering with me as the Lord sends me to Peru. We are finally NOW at the point of looking at logistics for me moving, getting my financial needs finalized, spreading the word and getting prepared to help me begin fund-raising, etc. I am soo blessed to be a member of a body of believers who take missions seriously and are willing to take on the full responsibility of mentoring me, caring for me, keeping me accountable, etc. They will not just be a monthly support check, but they will be my entire support team that I can rely on to keep me focused as well as turn to when I'm at my wits end and feeling overwhelmed.
While all of that has been going on, I have continued to stay in contact with all of my new friends at the Refuge of Hope(they all have internet and facebook!) as well as the U.S. Director for the Refuge and talk about what my role will be at the Refuge, Logistics, Networking, etc. I have continued to work as a freelance interpreter in the DC/VA/MD area and God has been faithful to continue to provide me the income so I can work on accomplishing the goal of paying off my debt before I move to Peru. I have one credit card, the rest of my student loans, and my car payment to pay off. I am planning on selling my car before I leave, so that should hopefully take care of itself.
I have also interviewed with a Sending Agency that my church is looking at partnering with. They will provide us a non-profit organization that all of my funds support can be facilitated through, provide me an international health insurance plan I can join, allow me to be a "W2" employee under them so they will take care of deducting taxes, as well as provide us as a church guidance and resources to aid us as we send out a missionary(me) from within the body. We are hoping to partner with them soon, and then I will be at the point where I can begin fund-raising!
I have also begun the grand task of purging personal items that will not be useful in Peru, as well as acquiring and packing items that will be useful or that have been given to me as donations for the Refuge of Hope. This of course has resulted in my room constantly housing rubbermaids in various stages of being filled, to then join their ever-increasing comrads in my parent's attic as they patiently wait to be shipped to Peru. :-)
So there you have it! Lots of behind the scenes kind of stuff happening, but all still important! We are at the ending stages of these policy formalizations, and so going forward should start to get even more interesting! We will begin looking at getting literature about what I'm doing printed, start fund-raising, connect with other churches, etc, and soo much more!
Thank You all sooo much for your continued prayers and support! We have really needed God's guidance and direction as we've accomplished all of the above, and your faithful prayers have been invaluable! Please continue to pray as we continue forward with looking at departure dates, shipping my stuff, funding, and all the tons of details still left to figure out. You all are a huge blessing to me and I couldn't continue without the prayers of the saints and the partnership of the church here. God Bless! :-)