A lot can happen in ten months and somehow, even more can happen in two weeks.
I remember sitting in the International Lounge last May as our community prayed over and sent out the second element of the Congo Advance team. I remember thinking what an amazing opportunity that would be and tucked away a desire to go. At the time I was still only planning on being with Mercy Ships for a few months thus it seemed unlikely I would ever go, so it became very much a forgotten thought. Until a few weeks ago when someone mentioned in passing that my name had been on a short list for the team but due to staffing I wasn’t able to go. At the same time I felt equal parts flattered and disappointed.
Over the next few days I’d mulled it over and began praying and asking for someway for it to work out for me to be a part of the team. Thinking it a wild request I maintained quite a realistic outlook and didn’t mention it to many people. It shouldn’t surprise me anymore how God works things out and how quickly a department being understaffed goes to being fully staffed and arrival dates of new crew move up almost two months, how conversations happen, more conversations and how things come together and finally all the signatures are on the transfer form and its official that I am the Operations Liaison for the Guinea Advance team.
So what exactly does this mean? For starters it means I’ll be leaving Pointe-Noire the beginning of May and moving to Conakry. Once there it means a lot of work; work that will challenge and use my skill set and grow me. I’ll primarily be working with customs, immigration, transportation, finance, and other businesses to ensure we have clearance for containers, that crew can actually get into the country, have cell phone coverage for our business numbers, etc.
This opportunity also means living in Africa not just next to Africa, it means living in a house and hearing street noises not just AC and generators, it means living in community with a small group and building new friendships and shared experiences. It means long days and work weeks, it means rapidly and desperately improving my french, it means many prayers for health and rest… in short it means a beautiful adventure.