Sweet friends, I’ve got some news. This is probably one of several half-month posts you’ll see in the next little while.
After Georgia’s win over Auburn this weekend it seemed an appropriate time to bring your attention to my upcoming trip to Africa.
That’s right, Africa.
In November of 2012 I met this sweet friend one night after a long travel day. My team climbed off the bus in the middle of nowhere Swaziland (which is already in the middle of nowhere South Africa) and walked into the team house to find dinner waiting for us. One of my teammates and I were shocked to see a bright orange Auburn sweatshirt sitting on a bench as we walked in, potato salad, and southern accents. It was this random night in November that I met Morgan Jones. We spent a month pulling carrots out of the ground, eating donuts, and drinking Coke by the glass bottle. We even managed to squeeze a sleepover in one night before we left.
Since then, we’ve both been around the world and back. I finished my eleven months on the Race and landed in Atlanta to find my family and friends there, including Morgan and her brother! We went to Olive Garden and it became this funny little tradition. Eight months later she left to live in Swaziland forever. She has been serving as a full-time missionary for three years.
In all this time, we’ve continued to talk online and see each other when we’re in the same country (which is rare, obviously), and she’s found this great guy she’s going to marry.
So, in March of 2017, I get to stand beside her as she weds this man in the mountains of Swaziland and, y’all, I am beside myself excited. For one, I get to stand by this sweet friend on one of the most incredible days of her life, but also because I get to go back to one of my favorite countries in the world. I get to see faces I haven’t seen since in over four years. I get to walk dirt roads lined with sugar cane fields and wake up to sunrises in the biggest sky I’ve ever seen. I get to play games and laugh with children in a country I love so dearly and minister alongside some of the greatest folks I know.
Did I mention how excited I am?
Several of us are going over early so we can spend a week working with Morgan’s ministry there in Swaziland. This will include several days at carepoints where GoGos, grandmothers, cook and teach the children in the area who don’t have the option to go to school and often don’t have money for meals. (They are the best cooks. I’m not even kidding. We get to shred carrots and cut potatoes, and I hope they will make fried chicken again because it is so good, y’all.) These women are incredible to me because they spend their “retirement” serving their community rather than taking a break from life. They hold so much wisdom and gumption. I love learning from them, laughing with them, and serving alongside them.
Morgan has some great friends who have managed to get us discount flight tickets, which is such a crazy blessing from the Lord. The trip will cost around $1800 dollars, which is SO CHEAP for a flight and lodging/transportation in Africa- hopping the Atlantic is expensive and this trip would typically be about twice this cost.
I am readily taking donations if you are interested in partnering with me. I am also selling sugar scrubs made with doTerra essential oils. They are incredible for your skin and make awesome gifts for Christmas and birthdays for teachers, relatives, and friends! I’ve pictured some a friend of mine made in the past below.
I will be making lavender, grapefruit (amazing for your skin), Candy Cane (peppermint), and Cinnamon Vanilla (the scent of this one is incredible).
The scrubs will be $10 each plus shipping. Please let me know by December 1 if you’d like one before Christmas!
If you’re interested in partnering with me, but don’t care for a sugar scrub, you can send online donations via paypal to firstname.lastname@example.org, via the Cash App (powered by Square, super secure, and probably the best way to send money digitally), or send checks (and letters!) to PO Box 941 Rome, GA 30162.
Please join with me in praying for Morgan and Bongani as they prepare to join their lives and continue ministry together in the coming months and years. If you’re married, feel free to leave wisdom in the comments for them as they prepare for this amazing journey. Also pray for their ministry in the coming years as they grow together and continue to work alongside so many others in Swaziland for the Kingdom! God is working so many wonderful things through these people and they are dear to my heart.