Thursday, January 31, 2013

Updating on Ethiopia

Hey friends! Just wanted to give you all a little update on our upcoming Ethiopia trip. Time is drawing closer - only 136 or so days left until David and I leave for Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. We are incredibly excited and are literally counting down the days. We have even gotten the kids excited about this trip and they are now asking how old they have to be to be able to go! I believe the answer to that is 8 or 10, but whatever it is, they will be going as soon as they meet requirements. Team Blevins' passion and heart for serving the people of Ethiopia is only growing more and more by the day and we can't imagine not taking Chloe and Brody with us one day to serve together as a family. How awesome would that be?!?

So, let me take just a moment to update you on how things are going in the fundraising department because God has shown up and shown up BIG! As of now, we are only $969 short of having my entire trip paid for. HOWEVER, we have been promised a donation of $1000 so in all actuality, my trip is paid for and David's balance is beginning to be chipped away at. So what does that mean for us? Well, it means that we have received donations (including the pledge) totaling $2700 thus far. WHAT?!?!?! We only started raising funds 30 days ago. All I can think of when I look at this is the scripture that says: "All glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20). This is for sure more than I ever thought of when I prayed over the first batch of fundraising letters that we sent out.

What else does this mean for us? It means that we still need to raise $2819 but we are trusting in God to supply all of that and we are even asking for an abundance because any and all extra will be used to purchase goats, sheep, chickens, etc...for the Ethiopian families. It will also go towards donkeys for the women to use to transport humongous loads up and down the mountains every day in order to make a tiny amount of income for their families. When I say humongous I mean these sweet ladies carry 200 pounds (literally) on their backs of sticks that are used for building things etc..(picture is below). David said on his last trip there that they stopped a lady headed up the mountain to give her a new pair of shoes and that it took 6 guys to handle the load that this one poor woman was carrying by herself. Can you even imagine?!?

So all of that to say, please please please keep praying about donating to our trip if you haven't already done so. It goes well beyond blessing David and myself into blessing the Ethiopians. And of course, we will always covet any and all prayers for our trip. We can't wait to see what God is going to do and will of course update you periodically so that we can give all the glory back to the only One who deserves it.

This little guy who was an orphan at the time of David's trip is probably 2.5 years old by now. I have no idea of whether he is still in the orphanage or if he has been adopted yet, but isn't he the cutest?!? We will be visiting orphans on our trip by the hundreds.

This is an example from David's last trip of stopping on the side of the road to pass out blessing bags to the children. The bags include shoes, socks, underwear, and and outfit. Look how they line the road! Any extra money we raise will be used to give these blessing bags out as well. David and I will also be packing extra bags of our kids' clothes and shoes to take with us to give out.

Check out these handsome little guys! My heart just breaks thinking about these little boys needing things as simple as underwear and socks and not having them. I just wish I could bring them home to Tennessee with us. Who knows...maybe one day???

This is a lady carrying the heavy load as described above. Think how amazing it would be to be able to give her a donkey to carry this physical load and while we are at it, we could show her what it means to be like Christ and help her see what it means to let Him carry her heavy emotional loads.

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