Monday, August 18, 2014

What are we doing??

 Life has been a blur the last 5 months as we have been prepping and anticipating for India. We are nearing the end of summer, which means we will soon been heading off for India. That. Is. Crazy!! For those that have been keeping up on Facebook, our life has looked a bit...well crazy and confusing to those that don't know what we've been up to the last 5 months. In order to clear up some of that confusion, we will answer the question just what in the world are we doing??? Here's a timeline of our plans through the year. It is very true that man makes plans, but the Lord determines his steps! Because it is very clear the Lord has been directing our steps from the very beginning!...

Last year (2013) we began looking into doing a missions trip together. Originally we wanted to do the World Race, 11 countries in 11 months. India wasn't even on my radar because at this point in the year, all their long term missions were only for women. We had some trials towards the end of our year that put pursuing missions on the back burner. We knew we were just supposed to wait on the Lord to for the right timing. 

Beginning of January - Healing came. The Lord brought us through our trials and we saw that we might be able to do missions, but maybe not as long as we were originally thinking. For the first time, Rahab's Rope was opening up most of their long term trips to men volunteers. inquired about being a husband and wife team to Goa through Rahab's Rope
Mid-January - officially applied to be interns with Rahab's Rope
February - Our applications were accepted to be fall interns. Sent in our deposit to secure our spots. The only people that knew was our family and pastor.
Mid-March - decided to move to Alaska after we returned in the beginning of winter. We had always talked about it, but never seriously until then. We knew we had to quit our jobs and give up our apartment to go on this trip, so we thought going to my hometown would be a perfect place to start over. We wanted to drive up, since we had just bought our car and didn't want to sell it yet. So we knew we would have to drive in the summer before our trip, since we did not want to drive in the middle of winter when we planned on moving there. began saving for that portion of the trip.
April - made it public we were going to India. Began fundraising, sending out support letters, and getting support from our church. 
May - applied for our passports. Participated in "Everywhere Missions" at our church where we set up a table at our church every Sunday for 5 weeks to talk about our missions trip. Got a bit burnt out this month and discouraged about fundraising. 
June - 50% supported. The Lord reminded us that even if we didn't do anything, if He really wanted us to go He would provide. There was no need to worry or burn myself out. Started slowly packing for our move and having so much fun with our family and friends in Livermore.
July - The Lord provided above our goal of $10,000!! Applied for visas, finished packing for our move, spent last few weeks with our family, got our vaccines, and said goodbye to San Francisco. Was blessed with the most amazing summers in California because of the community we were in.
August 1st - left on our #Alaskabound road trip! Left bright and early at 7:30 in the morning. Anticipated the rest of the 3,500 miles ahead. Stops on the U.S. side: Crater Lake, Salem OR, Portland, Vancouver WA, and Bellingham. 
August 5th - made it to Canada. Hoped to take 5 days to get to Alaska. Lots of driving. Lots of adventure. 
August 8th - pushed through the Yukon and made it to Alaska in 4 days! We had some stresses 
and conflict on the road. The Lord was most definitely teaching us patience. Looking back now, I see  how our conflict was an answer to prayer, because we really had to work on communication and fighting to be on the same team. Next destination was Anchorage to relax for a couple of days.
August 11th - made it to Homer. Stayed in an amazing treehouse bnb for our "last night" on the mainland. Our ferry was scheduled to leave the next night to get to Kodiak. Lies. 
August 12th - got stuck in Homer because the ferry had maintenance issues. See how the Lord determines our steps? This time was hard because I so wanted to be home and was mentally done with being a nomad. It was also hard because we didn't know if we would be able to get our car to Kodiak which was the whole reason for the trip.  Looking back, I know the Lord was 1) teaching us to trust Him and 2) teaching us to be okay with the unexpected. I mean we are going to India for heaven's sake! 
August 14th-15th - successfully made it on our rescheduled ticket with our car. Finally home in Kodiak. 

We are now in Kodiak, catching up with friends and nature and doing little acts of service and ministry here and there when needed. It is good to be home, but I am ready to get to India. I realize after this how I will neve stop longing for ultimate rest and "done with being a nomad". I see now more than ever how I am a foreigner in this world and the home I am longing for is with my Heavenly Father. So as I travel on this life-long "road trip", I pray I live to the hilt of every moment the Lord provides (both expected and unexpected moments) to bring Him glory and bring people along on this journey. It is also encouraging for as long as I "travel" on this earth, Christ is with me! 
I  really want to say thank you to those of you that have supported us financially and through prayers. This would not be happening without the body of Christ that has surrounded us over the past couple of years! I apologize for my lack of updates. So often so many things are running through my mind that it is hard to slow it down and share it with others. I want to make sure when we are India we are sharing our journey and the Lord's work there with you all that have supported us! We do not leave for India until Saturday September 6th, so we still have a couple more weeks of prepping spiritually and mentally for our trip. We aren't really done traveling as only we leave to spend a final week in California to spend time with our family and church family before leaving for our trip. We will also be spending a week traveling on the east coast right before we depart on our 14 hour flight to India on August 6th. I will never be done being a nomad. Again, thank you and keep us in our prayers! 

Ways you can pray:
- that Caleb and I would grow in being further united in this mission. 
- that we would have joy, even in the unexpected.
- our trust would continue to grow in th Lord. 
- That we would fully rely on Him. 

Blessings from the Sharps


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