The Journey Begins

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Today is the first day of our physical Journey as we leave late tonight on the first leg of our flight to the Dominican Republic.  Yet, our spiritual journey started long ago as God began to work in our hearts and minds to bring us to this place.  It has also been preceded by many others who have known a piece of God's vision; those who encouraged a missions vision, and those who have worked to develop a program for short-term missions at Hillside. 

Our team meetings started in early January and our last one was Monday evening that included dinner at the Carl’s home and special training from Sarah Ago.  I am humbled to say that it is an impressive group of brothers and sister in Christ, and a well-developed program.  I know that I will be deeply enriched in my fellowship with my fellow team members.

Sadly, our journey starts with two members who will not be able to attend due to illness.  We will certainly miss Mary-Beth Gibson and Nicola Hemerling on our trip, and ask you to join us in prayer for their healing.

For all of us, the days leading up to our departure have its own challenges.  Family, work, health, finances as well as preparing for our travel and the ministry with brothers and sisters in Christ in the Dominican Republic have been continually present.  We all have our own stories, and we look forward to sharing those with one another and seeing how our loving Father works through us regardless of our view of our own limitations.  We look forward to what He teaches us about culture and a world view of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

As we begin, we ask you to pray for our safe travels, for health and safety, and for us to bond as a group with Christ at the center of all our interactions within the team, and all those we work with.  We ask you to pray that we have His awareness of need for those He has called us to serve, and for each of us to be quiet in order to listen to Holy Spirit speak to us. 

Lastly, we are enormously grateful for the family at Hillside that have made it possible for us to serve in this way, and the wonderful support we know that we have in you.  While we are gone in another land, we will be remembering you in our prayers as well.  We look forward to sharing a small part of our stories in this blog, and more so when we return.

- James Fowler