Thursday, May 7, 2009

Travel Preparation Mercies

I am participating today in “Thankful Thursday,” hosted by Sonya at Truth for the Journey.

Recently, I have begun collecting what I need for my trip to Uganda in June, and planning how I will pack it all. I won’t need so much in the way of clothing, but we will have a lot of exposure to the elements, so I need to take things like hat, sunscreen, insect repellent, and plastic bags. We also have to take a lot of our food. In many ways it is like packing for the trips we often make to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in Minnesota/Canada.

Most of my cargo, however, will be things for the Ugandans we will be ministering to. Many wonderful friends have helped me collect toothpaste, toothbrushes, dental floss, and eye glasses. I am also taking some teaching tools...a puppet, and some Bible story big books from a Sunday school curriculum, as well as a large bag of candy. As I prepare for this trip I am filled with gratefulness. Here are some things that come to my mind in the way of praise today:

• I am thankful for the generosity so many have shown in helping me fund my trip. In the beginning I was a bit uncomfortable asking for help, but God has provided so amazingly through the generosity of some great friends and family members. He also provided us with a surprise tax refund this year. What a blessing!

• I am thankful for a few ladies who took it upon themselves to ask dentists and eye clinics for donations. I am amazed and overwhelmed by the result! Of course I’m also thankful for the dentists and doctors that donated.

• I am thankful for all of those who have promised to pray for me and the rest of the team. I am specifically thankful for a couple of friends who are my designated prayer partners.

• I am thankful that I live in a country with a stable and relatively honest government. It is so easy to complain about how things are going here, but we have it good! I am reading a book about Idi Amin and the severe injustices that occurred under his reign in Uganda. Many of today’s problems in Uganda resulted from his abuse of power.

• I am thankful that I always have plenty of good food and fresh water, and that I don’t normally have to worry about contracting diseases through what I ingest.

• I am extremely thankful for this opportunity I have to minister to and encourage the people I meet in Uganda –to share God’s love and message of hope and salvation with them. Even though my suitcases will be overflowing with items to give them, I am pretty sure I will receive much more than I give. My life will be changed forever.

• I am thankful that God is stretching me, but also allowing me to use the specific gifts and abilities He has given me. He is so good! His faithfulness and grace are evident in both big ways and small.


  1. I love your list of thankfulness. I will pray for you as you head to Uganda. My family is big on missions! My middle daughter is heading back to Bolivia, SA after she FINALLY graduates from LSU after 5 years. SHe will spend almost 5 weeks there and then heads to Africa to work in a medical missions this fall before HOPEFULLY going to med school next year.

    Many prayers for you!

  2. Coming from Mr. Linky on Thankful Thursdays. I think this is beautiful. God be with you in Uganda!!

  3. Greetings Sharlyn, Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting. WOW! What a powerful TT list and opportunity to serve God in Uganda. I'll be praying for you as you minister and share God's love. How long will you be gone?

    I see you're from CR, IA. I grew up in Marion and moved from there when I was 13. I still have family in IA near the Quad Cities.

    I enjoyed your story of how you named your blog. And look forward to reading more about your trip.

    Blessings, SusanD

  4. Bussy and exciting time for you..Will pray for your mission to Uganda......
    Blessed TT

    BTW special that your mums name is also Bernice...I'm not hearing it alot overhere....

  5. May GOD bless you in Uganda as only He can..much love and prayers, andrea

    PS: recently, I have been having trouble accessing your blog...just wanted you to know. It was fine, today.

  6. Yes, I love your thankful list, too. I am glad everything is coming together for your trip.
    Thank you also for what you shared on my blog! God bless you, Laurie

  7. Sharlyn,

    Thank you for stopping by my blog today and for your kind comments. So you are going to Uganda? How wonderful! I've never been on a missions trip, but I do sponsor a boy in Brazil through Compassion International. Yes, you do end up receiving more than you give!

    Blessings to you,

  8. We never know how blessed we are.

    Thoughts and Prayers for your trip


  9. Grateful am I for your willingness to serve on a mission trip. Having been to Nicaragua twice and planning on a trip to Ecuador this year, I know the joy and the heartache that is before you. Godspeed on your journey!


  10. Hi! I am visiting from Truth 4 the Journey. I love your blog name & reason for it! It was a great story.

    It was nice to read your thankful list and get to know you better.

    Best of all, although I am in VA, I have been to Cedar Rapids many times, as my husband is from Iowa and his folks still live near Waterloo, and his brother is in Solon. Have a great day!

  11. What a tremendous opportunity to touch the lives of the people of Uganda. I thank God for your faithfulness in answering the call to go.
    Blessings - Lisa

  12. WOW...a missions trip. I've only been once as a teenager and we went to a location here in our own state that had been deeply affected by a flood. I still remember being amazed at what I saw right here basically in my own back yard. Even though it was 200 miles away.

  13. Sharlyn,

    What a beautiful and bountiful list of the many things you are thankful for.

    We will be praying for you that your time in Uganda will produce some amazing fruit and strong roots that find furtile soil there.

    I am sure it will be a life changing time for you and can't wait to hear all about it when you return.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

  14. I enjoyed reading your thankful list! Where in Uganda are you going? My son has gone there twice- once on a mission trip and then he spent last summer there fulfilling his college internship requirement. Fortunately, he was able to combine serving the Lord there and his school projects:) He stayed on an island in Lake Victoria.

    I will be praying for your trip!
    Thanks for coming by my place for a visit:)

    Linda C


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