Near the beginning of 2015, around January 25, my wife and I had just wrapped up a Connection Groups meeting we called on a Sunday to prepare for an upcoming CG Expo called by our senior pastor unexpectedly for the following week. We went to a Missions Ministry meeting that was being held within 30 minutes of the ending of our meeting (invited by one of our fellow Connection Group’s leaders) just to get information. We had missions in our heart but not for at least two years down the road since we were still directors of the Connection Groups Ministry, we knew we had to fulfill God’s call on that ministry before He would release us to perform another assignment.
We had Israel and the Philippines in our hearts as where we would like to go and I had anywhere in Africa deep down in the back my mind. So we went with the understanding that this meeting would help us prepare for some type of mission trip two years later. We had originally looked into missions in 2008 but were not financially ready since at that time the trips were around $2000 a person.
So we went with a couple of members that were trying to get us to come on a mission trip for a few months (more as a kind way of saying we will check it out but we know God hasn’t called us yet), although we were feeling like we might be released from Connection Groups at the end of 2015 since it had been a very challenging journey (seven years, six as directors) with seemingly little success.
As we sat in the meeting, they ran down the list of trips planned for the year (approximately 13 – 15), of which the Philippines and Israel were part of them. As they described the trips plus cost, we were both feeling that we were still not ready at the time and it would be another 2 years.
When they described the Israel mission trip, there was no unction to sign up at all, when they mentioned the Philippines, a small unction but not for this year, so we felt our instincts were right on target and just sat patiently waiting for the meeting to end so we could go home. After all it was a long day for us.
BUT God had a different Plan!
As they went down the list i was getting impatient while my wife was getting excited, she always wanted to go on a missions trip. Then when they announced Uganda, a strong unction overcame me, I began to see visions of smiling African children surrounding me. I began to weep and began to silently ask God what was this overwhelming sense of sadness, the images of the children. I began to ask Him, “How are we going to pay for this? My wife is unemployed, we are behind in our finances, our vehicles need fixing, we are still over the CG Ministry, every seemingly valid question and excuse as to why this couldn’t be from God popped into my thought process. But all I kept hearing was done, done, done, done, done and done!
I sat there stunned and overwhelmed because I was looking at it from the natural: there was no way we could get ready in such a short period of time with all of the things we had to overcome in our current financial condition. We were just not ready!
Then as I looked over to my wife who was all smiles, enjoying the explanations of the different countries the Missions Ministry was describing, she quietly leaned over, looked me in the eyes and loving said to me, “I guess we are going to Uganda” I was now dumbfounded since I hadn’t said a word to her. I then realized were going to Uganda!
Over the next two weeks we both began to pray of confirmation and it kept coming, from the pulpit, me getting dreams at 1, 2 and 3 o’clock in the morning about the Uganda people and especially the children. I was still overwhelmed. I finally awoke one morning in the process and arrogantly but silently prayed to God that if this was really from Him, make my wife pray everything I was going to pray that morning because ‘I’m tired’ and I’m not going to pray. [Really?!] Well, guess what, after we finished our morning prayers together, she began to pray over me before going to work and prayed EVERYTHING I was going to pray that morning.
So now I knew for sure, we were definitely going and we had to trust God, still feeling overwhelmed I did not tell my wife what just occurred and sent her off to work.
One week later, she came home and stated that God showed her how we were going to pay for the trip. We looked into it and used one of her forgotten 401K plans to fund not only the trip but get our vehicles repaired and help others with their needs! (I watched Him miraculously grow it by $2000 in 2 days before we withdrew all the funds). OUR God is an awesome God!!!!
So in less than two weeks we will be heading to Uganda, our first mission trip and God has already placed another mission trip (Thailand) for next year in our hearts (we thought Philippines but he said we wanted that). We are humbled to be used by our Lord and Savior in this way.
You can follow our journey and keep updated at this link: Our Missions Blog