It's funny how the sun comes up, and the birds chirp, and the sprinklers kick on in the yards, and everyone goes about their lives like normal, even though this is ANYTHING but a normal day.
I woke up for the first time at 2:20 a.m., and forced myself to NOT get out of the bed, but to go back to sleep for a few more hours. When my alarm went off at 5:15, I was glad. I was ready.
And also, I wasn't. I'm still not.
Can anyone ever really be ready for something monumental and life-changing? Even knowing it will be all those things doesn't prepare you to walk the path. All the preparation in the world is never enough. Some things are just like being hit by a bus, or thrown into the deep end of a pool and told to SWIM.
This is going to be like that.
It's going to be hard and exhausting and crowded and uncomfortable...and overwhelmingly wonderful and filled with blessings and miracles I can't even fathom.
I wonder, as I stare out the window of the plane, if everyone feels this sense of expectation mingled with terror, tumbling around with the trepidation of leaving home and the excitement of a new experience.
Probably. Our team is made up of many first timers, after all, and many (like me) who haven't been in many years. Even the seasoned pros have a twinkle in their eye.
It's going to change everything.
It does every time.
I know it does, because I know so many veterans of this feeling, this calling, this mission.
Every single time, you fight down the nerves. And you battle through obstacles. And you forge ahead, chin set, teeth grinding, through goodbye hugs and salty kisses. You push down the sense of panic, and you grip tightly to the calling instead.
People come to see you off, and they wave and they pray and they slip treats and notes into your bag, and then...then their is security and checkpoints and bathroom breaks and a crowd of people all pulsing with adrenaline. But the planes...the planes are quiet and the hum of the engine drowns out the talking, and that's when it sinks in.
All the preparing. All the shopping. All the packing. All the praying.
Its all led up to this.
And life changes forever.
It's a missions trip. Its obeying the call, the one that beats in the chest of every believer.
Go. Tell everyone. Tell them of Him. Tell them of His love. His mercy. His peace.
And so...we do. And our families step up and fill in the gaps while we are gone, and that makes them missionaries too. And it makes our hearts swell with love and gratitude.
The Lord has us in the palm of His hand. And He has our loved ones on the other side of the world in the same hand. So we are all together in Him. And we are all tellers of His story.
Missionaries. Emissaries. The GO team.
Until the whole world hears.