Sunday, March 1, 2009

I am going to....

AFRICA!

Hello Friends!

I am writing to tell you about an amazing journey I am going to embark on 3 weeks from yesterday. I am going to South Africa!

My church, New Hope, sends a team every year to South Africa to work with a group called Ten Thousand Homes. This organization was created by some great friends of ours, Jen and Jeremy Price. Their mission is this:

Ten Thousand Homes creates “HOME” for children orphaned by HIV/AIDS in
Southern Africa by building multi-care centers, building homes, and providing
a sense of belonging for orphans and vulnerable children.”


While there, we will have the privilege of coming alongside Jen and Jeremy’s team of full-time workers to assist in various projects, including helping with the roofing of one of their newly built homes, putting on a Vacation Bible School for the kids, serving in the multi-care centers, and visiting and praying for those who are sick with HIV/AIDS.

While I in no way feel equipped to do any of those things, I know that Jesus is more than able and willing to give me the strength where I feel inadequate. God’s heart is for the poor…for the defenseless, the orphan, the widow.

“He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well with him.
Is that not what it means to know me?” says the Lord.” Jeremiah 22:16

(Photo by Jen Price)

I was recently in a Bible study, and our assigned reading for the week was the book of Ephesians. I somehow got off track and found myself journaling about the first three chapters of 1 John. At first I was frustrated that I had been “wasting” my time in the wrong book (ha ha), but God never wastes an opportunity to speak to us through His word. I found myself reading and re-reading the same verse.

“If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no
pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love
with words or tongue, but with actions and in truth.” I John 3:17-18

I asked God what He wanted me to do in response to this verse. I think God has many answers to that question, and going on this trip is just the first. I know that I will miss Steve, Seth and Caleb so very much, but at the same time, I am excited to be able to go on this trip without the responsibilities of “wife” or “mother”. (It took a few wise women speaking into my life to make me feel ok about even saying that last statement!) I know that God has things he wants to do in my heart; to shape me and mold me to be more like Him, to have more of His heart for His people who are in need. I am looking forward to being all His for 14 days!

I am blessed to already have the funds I need to be able to go on this trip. However, I am going with 9 other people who are raising funds to be able to go and serve, and any financial assistance you feel led to give to our team would be so appreciated. But most of all, we need your prayers! Prayers for health, team unity, open ears, hearts to serve, and for us to be a purposeful blessing to those we encounter in South Africa.

I would also like to ask for prayer for my husband and two young sons I am leaving behind for 14 days. The longest I have been away from the boys is 4 days, so this will definitely be a new and stretching experience for all of us. I look forward to hearing about all the male bonding that will be going on at the Horvath house!

I would just ask you to pray specifically for health for Steve, Seth and Caleb, for an abundance of grace and patience for all of them, and for God’s peace and comfort to rest mightily on my home in my absence. My Mom and Dad have graciously agreed to help with the boys while I am gone, but I know that Steve could also use some extra help from our extended “family” of friends! While Steve was away for 17 days in Pakistan earlier this year, so many of you called to check on me, offered to watch the boys for an afternoon or evening, or invited us over to share a meal with you. Please extend those same loving arms to Steve and the boys while I am away in Africa!

Thank you in advance for your support and prayers. It makes it so much easier to go knowing that our family and friends will step in to help and pray while I am gone. May God richly bless you for the love you show!

Following His call,

Courtney

5 comments:

Kritter Krit said...

You are just a neat, neat, NEAT person. I know why Sarah loves you to death, and I wish I knew you as more than just a "bloggy friend".

Will be praying for your trip, and for your boys left behind in their male bonding (and mess-making). Yikes! ;)

life with the wisners said...

oh friend. i adore you. absolutely adore you.

and SO wish i could go to. definitely so i could experience what you're going to experience. but also so i could experience it WITH you.

your passion is amazing. i love it. i will definitely be praying for you while you're there. as well as your cute little family back home. they will miss their mama but hopefully be praying that their mama is experiencing Christ.

i love that you somehow found yourself in 1 john. God. He's quite a character.

i love this post. i am thrilled for you. and i can't wait to see what He's going to do with you and through you and for you.

love you.

julia d. hull said...

YEA GOD! YEA COURTNEY! We will definitely lift you, your team and your family up in prayer while you are chasing God's heart. Just think how changed you will be from the trip and the 'new' wife and mom that will be returning home to her family...it's all GOOD. :)

Jen said...

I can't believe it's in 3 weeks! Can't wait to see you soon! This time we can have you over for a meal at our house!

John, Carla & Rae Shaw said...

Yea Courtney! I am so glad you are coming! I look forward to seeing you and will be praying for the boys! Steve will do an awesome job. And what a blessing that you have all your funds.

Hurry on over here!