p2p blog header_Justine

 

Packing, Peace and Provision!

As many of you would know, in 35 days we move out of our house in beautiful Tathra and in 47 days we fly out of Australia to begin what is already shaping up to be an amazing adventure.

Our family (minus Chloe) will be travelling to West Africa to spend three years volunteering on the Africa Mercy (a hospital ship off the West African coast.)  We fly out of Australia on 4th June arriving in Dallas to begin five weeks of training, then fly to Haiti for two weeks of field service, before flying on to Las Palmas in the Canary Islands to meet the ship and our new home.  From there we have a short six hour sail to Tenerife and then a two week sail down to Conakry in Guinea where we will be docked for 10 months, during which time Dave will start his position as Principal of the Academy.

You can probably imagine our house, and our lives are quite chaotic at the moment.  Not only have we been selling most of our belongings, we have been packing up what we want to keep (photo albums and photos!) and giving away the rest of our “stuff” as we work on finishing up our lives in Australia.  Packing … the first P.

In amongst all of this, life still happens.  We sadly lost a friend two weeks ago to a shark attack just off the cliff in front of our house, and amidst the sadness, grief, total disbelief and Dave getting ready to lead the beautiful memorial service, Dave had a knee operation and developed a deep vein thrombosis.  I photographed my last wedding (in pouring rain), Chloe continues to settle into University life, and we have had some family photos taken.

Life is life, a mixture of great stuff and tough stuff – and in and through it all, we have had an incredible sense of God given Peace.  The most important P!

The last P … provision!  We started this journey knowing that we had most of the income that we would need to pay our way whilst on board, but we didn’t have the up-front costs (of approximately $18,000 US) to land ourselves on the boat in Guinea.  All along we were encouraged that it would be okay and “would we still do this if the money wasn’t an issue?”  We have been receiving money, whether through the sale of our “stuff” or amazing gifts from people we know and some that we have never met, just at the right time that we have needed it. This is an amazing journey of faith!

If you would like to join us in this adventure by supporting us, you can do that through the Donor Page we have set up.

But wait there is more … I have also been contacted regarding an interview with the Communications Team about a part time photography position on board.  More on that one later …

One last thing that happened today was that we went along to our Easter service at church where we met a young nurse who lives in Melbourne and is visiting her family in Tathra for the weekend.  She had a Mercy Ships sweater on!  Now you need to understand that our town is made up of just 1600 residents.  It really is a little country town and this was nothing short of amazing!

It was great to talk with her about her experiences being on board for two months late last year.  So many amazing stories and amazing photos.  One of the stories she told me was that before she had even considered joining the Africa Mercy, she had a series of “random” encounters with people who had been on the ship.  People from all walks of life that she kept meeting in a variety of countries as she travelled around the world – she is our first!

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23 Responses to Blog: The Three Ps and Random Encounters

  1. Kaye Rhodes says:

    Wishing you and your family a wonderful, fulfilling mission. God bless you all. Looking forward to your updates!

  2. Suzy Dust says:

    Hi Justine! Congratulations on your new adventure! I’m just getting caught up after months of being away and had wondered what you decided. I’m not surprised at all you came to this decision. I wish you all the best and I hope we continue to hear about your experiences. Suzy

  3. Linda Johnson says:

    Justine, looks like you all are in for quite an adventure. I know exactly where you will be during your training in Texas. I pass Mercy Ships once a year on my way to one of the scrapbook retreats that I attend outside of Lindale. Wishing you all safe travels and lots of great memories in the making.

  4. Carolyn says:

    We were sitting around after dinner talking and my son said, “Mom, have you ever heard of a hospital ship that goes around Africa and ministers to people?” I smiled and said, “Why, yes, son. Juzzi from Australia and her family are going to be on Mercy Ship for three years very soon!” “Really?! How cool!” You’re a rock star at my house now. 🙂

  5. Sandy says:

    I have to admit that ever since you told us about your adventure I have been looking at the globe, in a self-imposed geography lesson. I have been curious about the locations you have been talking about and figured I’d like to be more familiar with the countries and where they are. It sounds like such an amazing adventure. I can’t wait to tag along.

  6. Anita Albritton says:

    Justine, like so many others I have been so intrigued by your upcoming plans and changes. I feel as if I am living vicariously through your adventures and by Shelley’s too! I can only imagine what a crazy time it is getting ready to go! I wanted to tell you how very sorry I am about the loss of your friend. What an emotional roller coaster, between the excitement of your life changes and mourning your loss. Thinking of you and your family, and cheering you all on!!

    • Justine says:

      It’s a roller coaster alright Nita! There is also the sadness of leaving Chloe combined with the excitement of going … it’s all happening!

      • Anita Albritton says:

        Oh my! Of course! Don’t know how I could have forgotten to mention Chloe!! My kiddo live about an hour away attending university, and the good-byes are always difficult! What a challenge that is for your family!! Wishing you all the best!!

      • Anita Albritton says:

        Oh my! Of course! Don’t know how I could have forgotten to mention Chloe!! My kiddos live about an hour away attending university, and the good-byes are always difficult! What a challenge that is for your family!! Wishing you all the best!!

  7. westsea says:

    fyi – (sorry to put this comment here, but I couldn’t find a “contact us” option) – it may just be me, but for the past several days, the password field is not available when I try to log in. It then takes me to another page saying I did not enter my password correctly and giving me another chance, which works just fine. If you could pass this along to the appropriate pixie, that would be great! Thanks.

    • Shelley says:

      It’s not just you. It is a problem that we are aware of, but it is not something we can control. It actually does work, it just doesn’t look like it does. What happens is that the login text does not show up as you enter it. In fact the text is there, you just can’t see it. If you type your user name and password, it will still let you log on. In fact as long as your name is showing, the password is probably already there, so just hit Login and you should be OK. The other option is to use the Login button in the very top menu bar (next to the search box). It is working OK.
      (FYI for next time – The Contact Us link is on one of the globes in our page header)

  8. Ruth says:

    Wishing you all the best as you start this new adventure, It sounds like it will be a life changing experience.

  9. adakallen adakallen says:

    What a journey!!!!

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