“Let him who would move the world first move himself.” Socrates
Plane tickets? Check.
Water filters? Check.
Work boots? Check.
And the list goes on…
For weeks now our days have been consumed with question and answers and crossing off items on those pesky to-do lists!
“Did you manage to rent us a car in Johannesburg with four wheel drive? Those dirt roads can become impassable.”
“Do you think the girls need steel-toed boots? Surely they won’t be using a machete.”
“Has our South African money come in? How much is 5000 rands anyway?”
“Wonder if our phones will work on that 2G network?”
It’s funny that our family will only be gone for one month, but travel into a third world country is no easy task. If any detail is overlooked chances are we could get stuck with no way of getting the items we may need. However, at the end of each Q & A session, Jeff and I seem to agree- an adventurous spirit, a willing heart, a desire to serve, and the humility to become learners will probably go a long way toward our success on this venture.
We will be flying out on February 18 to Lesotho (pronounced le-soo-too) located within the borders of South Africa. Although we have lived in Uganda, this nation is unlike any place we have ever visited. (It’s actually 2700 miles from Uganda, full of its own customs, languages, tribes and peoples.) It will be summer when we arrive, but due to the high altitude (we will be living at over 5000 ft. elevation) the temperatures through the day will be pleasant (70s) and cooler at night (50s).
We have registered to attend an agricultural conference in which the four of us will be students alongside African nationals and other missionaries, learning best practices for sustainable agriculture in Africa. The lessons will be coupled with Bible studies as well. Our hope is to drink it all in and then to someday venture out into even more rural villages to teach both the farming practices and the Bible truths simultaneously. Our conference will last three weeks and then we will have a few days to get to know the nationals, visit local villages, spend time with other missionaries, and attend local church services. We have also carved out the last three days to visit a Safari park in South Africa.
I am certain this will be an eye-opening, life-changing experience for both me and Jeff and of course, our daughters. We plan to close our schoolbooks for a month (good-bye Greek tragedies and sentence diagramming) and let the wonderful world of Africa be our teacher. While we are so blessed to have this opportunity unfold before us, please consider uniting with us in prayer. I have a truly adventurous personality, but I wouldn’t dare travel into this spiritually unprepared. If you will partner with us in prayer we would greatly appreciate it!
- Smooth travel- Okay— so this journey is a doozy! Just getting to Lesotho will be a pretty big undertaking. We will fly Memphis to Atlanta on February 18 and then board a huge Boeing 777 for a 16 hour non-stop flight to Johannesburg. Please pray for Jeff who has a touch of claustrophobia and cannot sit for longer than a movie. Pray for me because I get motion-sickness, even on simple car rides. Pray for our daughters, that the screen time will work its magic and they will never even notice a full day has passed.
- Jet lag- With the 8 hour time difference and a day lost on a plane, we will undoubtedly land with our heads in la la land. Pray that we can rest at the appropriate times and quickly adjust to our new night and day.
- The second plane- After Johannesburg, we will board a tiny plan for the last leg of our trip to Lesotho, approximately a one hour flight. Since taking off and landing make me the most motion sick, this is actually the flight I am more worried about! It’s nothing but a long take off and landing!
- The car ride- After landing in Lesotho we will be picked up by a missionary who will drive us through a 2 1/2 hour, wild, unpaved, mountainous, treacherous trek to our conference. (Did I mention I get car sick?)
Honestly, these are our greatest prayer needs at this time. Once we are in country and at the conference we will be able to share with you about the accommodations, the people, the land around us, and any other needs we see. Ultimately, this trip is not about us— it’s about spreading God’s kingdom and giving Him glory at every twist and turn. We want to draw near to Him and let His love and light flow through us.
We do covet your prayers in that as well: may the King of our hearts be made known in and through us. May we find Him ever faithful in all corners of the earth. Thank you from our very hearts to yours for taking this journey with us.