It's no secret that I love Africa.
It's also not a secret that there is nowhere else I'd rather be.
I can honestly say I feel more at home there than I ever have here.
It's been a year and a half since I was last on African soil.
And my heart has longed to go back ever since I left.
In fact, I clearly remember a moment in the Malawi airport where I honestly considered not coming back at all. Thoughts like, "Lee and the girls can just come here." and "I can stay." flashed through my mind.
However,God has made it clear that that is not His plan for us.
But that doesn't make staying away any easier.
When we committed to adopt Emily, I knew what that would mean-- no more Africa for a while.
All of our pennies these days head into our adoption fund.
And no pennies means no Africa.
I knew this would be hard for me.
It's like giving up my passion and putting a part of heart in the corner on hold.
No Africa until Emily comes home or until I get to go visit her (no, visiting orphans in Congo doesn't usually happen. But my God is bigger than 'usually doesn't happen', and you just never know what He has in store). The point is, I knew when we began the adoption process that I wouldn't be able to afford to go back to Africa for anything not directly associated with our daughter.
And that's hard.
Part of me is selfish.
I want to be in my happy place.
I want to be where my heart is longing to be.
But I want my daughter more.
(No, this is not Emily. Remember-- no pictures of her until she is home. These little girls are part of the reason I wanted to stay in Malawi.)
However, Africa is apparently where God wants me to be because this past January I won a trip to go to visit our Noonday Collection artisans.
So, this July, I will officially be headed to Rwanda.
God is sending me back to Africa.
I'm still in shock.
My heart is overwhelmed with joy.
I can't wait to meet our artisans.
In fact, I've wanted to head to Rwanda ever since I saw this artisan holding the card I made.
I will get to hug her neck.
I will get to talk to her about her life.
I will get to go back to Africa.
And I simply can't wait.
I'll be traveling with twelve of my beloved Noonday sisters.
It is sure to be quite the adventure.
I don't know what all God has in store for us while we are in Rwanda.
But I DO KNOW that He is using Noonday over and over and over again to remind me just how GREAT He is and just how much He loves little ole' me.
A few other things I know today?
Tomorrow I'm hitting the road on a solo trip to do two adoption fundraisers with Noonday for beloved families working to bring their littles home and to spend some time with 400 other adoptive mamas at the Created for Care retreat. I CANNOT WAIT. If you need me tonight, just know that I won't be sleeping-- I'll be up counting the hours until Santa comes because that's how excited I am to head back to Created for Care and be surrounded by mamas with hearts like mine.
I ALSO know that there is still time for YOU to become a part of our journey to Emily and make your mark in her story. Find out the details on how you can do that here.
Happy Wednesday to you and you and you!