My Life Verse

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Tanzania Here I come!

 
 
 
 
As most of you know, God completely transformed my life over the past two years and I discovered that He has called me to be a Missionary in Africa. On this journey, I have traveled to South Africa, Swaziland, Mozambique, and Ghana! Next year, I get to add a new country of that nation to my list as I will be on my way to Tanzania for 2 weeks in February. Here are some brief details about the trip: Tanzania is in East Africa. I am traveling with a family from my church. We are working with King of Glories International Ministry and Living Waters Ministry during our time there. We will be building relationships, making connections, and serving however we can help with a school and orphanage that is under these ministries. I will be gone February 13-March 1.
 
In exactly 10 weeks I will return to Africa!!! I am SO excited. I can't even describe the burning desire in my heart to return, the deep love I have for the people, and the amount of space my heart holds for this nation. This time I will be traveling with a family from my church, the Rider's. (See picture above) The Rider family were missionaries in Mozambique for many years and started the non-profit Cross-Connections Outreach, which I went to Africa with the first two times I traveled there. They are amazing and I am so privileged and blessed to be traveling with them on this trip.
 
I would like to share with you how this trip came about for me. Keep in mind, I did not plan to go anywhere for 1 year because I felt I was supposed to be home and work, build relationships, and focus on my family. However, God had different plans.
 
Shortly after I got home from YWAM, I went walking with Crystal Rider and we talked about my experiences in YWAM. I shared with her the good and bad, growth that God did within me, and the dreams I have on my heart that He confirmed time and time again over the 5 months that I was gone. As I spoke about Africa, she shared with me how she might have an opportunity to travel to Tanzania, Africa in January or February and she asked that I join her in prayer and ask God if that is something He might have me be a part of or not. I was ecstatic because I thought I wouldn't be able to go to Africa for at least one year, since I had committed to working as a nanny for that amount of time. As I prayed, I felt God's peace about going. I knew in my heart I wanted to go because I have not been back to Africa since this burning passion in my heart has increased and my faith has been strengthened. But, I wanted to be sure this was God's will and not mine, so I continued to pray and ask for confirmation from the Lord that He truly was saying yes to this. When I was driving to meet Crystal for our walk, I noticed there was one single cloud in the sky and closely observed the shape of it, thinking it must be significant. After meeting with her, I googled a picture of Tanzania, and sure enough, it was the same shape as that single cloud I saw on my way to meet her. Wow. It only continued. I was looking for decor to add to my room since I'd be living at home longer now, and one day I felt the Holy Spirit direct me to go into this particular Ross. And, as I was looking at the decor, I literally stopped in my tracks as I realized there was a canvas that I was passing with Tanzania on it (the one pictured above). I was blown away and in awe. I knew it was divine because I didn't even find what I was looking for in there but I felt so strongly that I was supposed to look in that particular location. Another time, I sat down at a local Starbucks. Most Starbucks coffee places have African coffee so they have pictures of different countries in their locations, and being a regular Starbucks drinker, I figured I wouldn't take that as a confirmation. However, this time was different. I sat down in a comfy chair as it was the only spot open. I wanted to use my computer, so I was hoping a table would open up. Well, sure enough, shortly after I sat down, the only table available was underneath the Tanzania canvas, to which I noticed after I sat down. God really has a sense of humor.
 
Crystal planned to talk to the man affiliated with the ministry we'd be connecting with in Tanzania on my birthday, October 22nd. She called me and shared the exciting news that he gave her permission to bring me and then she told me that her husband, Paul, and her son, Levi would also be joining us! (see picture above. I traveled with their family to Israel last March on a tour with a group from my church) There was one twist, though. She needed to know by Thursday whether or not I could go and it was a Monday night that she informed me of this. I knew that was really soon and I was concerned about how I was going to talk to my bosses and if they would give me time off, because I committed to 1 year and they were already giving me vacation time when they were taking a vacation. But I knew I needed to ask and I had so many confirmations, so if my bosses said yes, this would be the last and final confirmation that me traveling to Tanzania in February was fully His perfect will for me. And, sure enough, my bosses said yes!! In the morning I asked the father and he said to talk to his wife when she got home, but that he didn't think it would be a problem because it would only be a couple of weeks and it is far enough away that they can work something out. So, I mentioned it to his wife and she literally said "just plan on going and we will work it out"! WHAT?!?!? I couldn't believe it. Haha. I literally was like, really God, it was that easy?!? wow.
 
As this is the giving season, I want to give you an opportunity to give.  And, what better way to give this season than to give to something that is lasting?
 
And so, here I am, just 10 weeks away from journeying to a new part of Africa, one step closer to reaching my dreams. I really want to stress the importance that this is not just "another missions trip" for me. I know confidently that I am called to be a long-term missionary in Africa and I am in the process of discovering where that will be and when that will happen. Therefore, your gift to me this season will be long-lasting because it enables me to continue in this process of going where God takes me, in hopeful expectation of being planted somewhere long-term in the near future.

Please know that there is a possibility that Tanzania could be a door for a long-term position for me. Please consider partnering with me in spying out the land! While I am physically in the land, I will be seeking to hear from God if this is where He will have me plant my seed. God has put it on my heart to raise $5,000 for this trip. This is the first time God has given me a desire and a specific amount to bring with me and give away while I am there. Therefore, my personal costs will be $4,000 mostly for travels and living expenses, but I intend to give away $1,000. And I am excited to see God provide everything I need by the time that I leave, exactly 10 weeks from today! :) That's only $500/week!


If you are interested in partnering with me and giving anytime before February 13, you can do so in two ways:

1. Tax-Deduction: Write checks to HHFCM (His Hands and Feet Christian Ministry) which is a non-profit organization that supports and cheers me on as a missionary. 100% of your funds will go directly to my trip. *Be sure to write Katie Elder in the memo. Mail checks to Andria Haubruge 811 Crestview Ct. San Marcos, CA 92078

2. No tax-deduction: Write checks to Katie Elder and mail to P.O. Box 501908 San Diego, CA 92150

If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask. You can email me at katiemarie.elder@gmail.com or call me at (858) 229- 4730. And please email me your prayer requests as I would love to be praying for YOU on a consistent basis.
 
Love you all!