Monday, November 12, 2012

Sandy, We're Coming for You.

Six years ago I had the privilege of traveling to Bay St. Louis, Mississippi to be a part of Hurricane Katrina relief in the Gulf Region. Not only did I get to go again that winter, I also got to go a third time the following summer.

When I say privilege, I truly mean it. Meeting the people of Bay St. Louis was life changing. Falling in love with them, their city, and their lives was a joy that I treasure deep in my heart.

Now, here is where it gets interesting...
About two months ago, a few of us had a desire to head back to the south and assist with whatever might be needed after Hurricane Isaac had struck the gulf region. We marked our calendars, and a few people even requested time off work (myself included). But when we connected with the organization we intended to go with - we were told that by the dates we could go in November they would probably have wrapped up work in the area.

And then on October 29th, Sandy hit the Jersey Shore.

So now, a team of 11 13 14 of us will be traveling East, instead of South. On November 28th, the exact date we had planned to head South, 8 9 10 of us will be leaving town on a redeye for the East Coast.
The following day 3 4  more will join us. The Lord has been incredibly favorable to those who are going - a few requested time off fully expecting a NO answer, but they got the approval!

We will work for several days - hopefully - aiding a hurting community - only equipped with what the Lord has gifted us. And then we will return home, I am certain, we will be bringing back a piece of the Garden State back to the Golden State.

We have no clue what we will meet when we get there. We have, have an idea, but really no clue what work we will be doing (demo, clean up, feeding people, or even just being there to encourage those who are hurting).
 Nine Eleven of the 11 13 14 served in Mississippi, one served in Louisiana. Most of us went on multiple trips. We each have our own stories from our time there.  So much of the work that was done wasn't tangible or visible. A lot of the work done there was in our own hearts.

And as we head out to tackle another hurricane, we are 6 years older, 6 years different, hopefully 6 years more like Christ. A lot has happened in our hearts and lives in the past 6 years.

In its short time of existence, Hope Church has worked hard to serve the Lord wherever, and whenever opportunities arise. And they seem to arise often.

It's one of the joys of being a part of a small church.
We have the ability to take action, and take it fast.

From sending our pastor and another leader to Sudan with only two weeks notice back in April, to sending another two guys to the Nuba Moutains just few short months later, to bringing flowers to the elderly in an assisted living facility on Valentine's day, to offering financial support to families who have an urgent need - it is exciting to be a part of what the Lord is doing.

It is what we at Hope call "Glocal Ministry". Global AND Local.

Here is the lesson that the Lord has been teaching me, over, and over, and over, particularly this year - is that you have NO CLUE what he might have in store for you right around the corner. I have no idea where he is going to work or move next.

A two weeks ago I'm watching TV shows that take place in New Jersey. And in a three more, I'll be standing in that exact area.

God reminds me of His faithfulness. Of His presence in everything. Of His sovereign plan.
Even when, and especially when, I can't see it.

It encourages me like crazy. When everything seems hopeless, and impossible, I look back on these things I have seen God do and I am reminded of His power.

We serve a BIG GOD, and I am so grateful that He works, even when I doubt. Even when I am blind to it.
And those moments when my eyes are opened, and His bigger plan is revealed, I rejoice!!

One of our mottos the last few months has been "PRAY. GO. GIVE. TELL."
I have gotten to be a part of the prayer, the giving, and the telling.
This time, I get to GO. 

So, if you want, join our team in prayer, as we head East.
We are grateful for your love and support and covet your prayers.


  1. Really awesome x 1 million! Your team will be in our prayers, can't wait to see how God works through you! Your stories make my guts happy, I miss you craft roomie!

  2. amen! prayers are sent! praying for a safe trip and that God' hand and work will upon his people

  3. Is it possible to get a picture of your team? I'd love to add your picture to our missionary map wall so we can pray for you every day! So glad you get to GO!

  4. This is so exciting! I had a feeling you guys were brewing up a trip to the East Coast :) One of these weekends Seth and I will come up to Hope and hear all about it! Thanks for keeping us updated!

  5. Six years more like Jesus.
    I love that, and I really think its true.
    It has been one of my biggest blessings and greatest joys to go from: you stopping me from getting into trouble in Mississippi, to me keeping YOU from getting into trouble in Jersey.
    I. Cannot. WAIT.

    We love Jersey for suresy.
    Golden State <--> Garden State
    And back and forth and back and forth.

  6. I love your obedience to go! Praying for you girl!

  7. So excited!
    Great overview and recap of the last 6 years.
    Can't wait to see what's next for this growing crew!!
    Sandy... hide your kids... we're coming for you!

  8. Yay! Count on me praying for your team!! Thanks for stepping out & serving in the name of perfect, sacrificial, amazing love. To God be the glory!

  9. seriously, you write good.
    thank you for expressing what was in my heart and what i was struggling to put my finger on.

    six years of crazy, nothing-but-what-God-has-done growth! HE IS GOOD!

    ps, thanks for the glocal shout out. ;)
    much love and cannot wait to serve with you again!

  10. love this whole thing. chills. so excited for you guys.

  11. you are amazing. so so excited to see Jesus work through your team.

  12. Can't wait to serve alongside you! Even if it is only for a day :) #RestoreTheShore