Well I try on occasion to give some life updates that are more personal than my day to day blogs for those members of my extended family or even friends that don't live close enough to be able to communicate on a daily basis and that's what this blog will be! I've received a few emails/texts over the past couple of weeks asking about some upcoming events in my life and I figured I'd just address those here!
WEDDING First, my brother is getting married on June 15th and I am definitely excited to be apart of their wedding and accept my new sister into the family. Nicolle has been a blessing in my life for many years and our family adores her and is thrilled for her to join us. You Tate's be nice, she's one of us now! LOL. My trip to Africa this summer will be leaving AFTER their wedding :)
AFRICA 2013 As many of you have heard I am going back to Africa this summer! I'm going with Global Celebration the ministry of Georgian and Winnie Banov. Along with a team, we will be going to Mozambique to visit the Iris Ministries base there. If Iris sounds familiar, IT SHOULD, that is the ministry that I visited this last summer in South Sudan. Iris Ministries is an organization started by one of my biggest heroes, Heidi Baker. At the bottom I will attach this year's newsletter that I should be mailing out SOON. While in Mozambique I'll be getting to do some of my FAVORITE things: loving on orphans, feeding the hungry, and of course ministering the gospel! As always I'd love to have your prayer and/or financial support. This year you can donate online with a credit card at www.youcaring.com/jessikatate or of course just wait for other options when you receive my newsletter. Please be praying June 24th-July 9th. I will give updates until that time on the youcaring site, so go check it out even if you don't want to donate financially!
I did just return home from an incredible vacation where I was able to visit Cozumel, Grand Cayman, and Jamaica. It was 7 days of just complete relaxation, reading books, and enjoying God's beautiful creation. Many have asked for more pictures from the trip and I just honestly haven't gotten time to edit those yet, but here are a few (unedited)!
WHAT'S NEXT... I've had plenty of questions asked about where I plan on being this coming up year. Whew what a difficult question! This past year, and really if I were honest, since I graduated college, has been a time of truly "trusting in the Lord with all my heart and leaning not to my own understanding" for where I'd go, where I'd live, what I'd be doing, you know just some minor details of life (LOL). Each year and each season has been a new time of listening to the Holy Spirit and being obedient. Obviously I went to college to do something completely different than anything I've done and probably ever will do. From missionary work, to teaching/coaching, being a full time youth pastor, to back to teaching/coaching, some more mission work etc. I have learned to not put God in my box of what I think I should do, what I feel I'm gifted at doing, or even sometimes what I feel "called" to do or when I feel "called" to do it. As I said in a recent blog, He is GOD, He is Lord, and He gets to make the decisions for my life. All of that being said, I'm still praying and asking God what this next year will look like. Life has sometimes felt like a circus, but I know one thing for sure, I know Who I follow and I know that I trust Him. So for now, I'm sorry, but no details on what's ahead. There are several options on the table and I'm just trusting God to be true to His word, and that my steps will be ordered by Him (Ps. 37:23, Prov. 16:9, Prov. 20:24).
As always I'm excited about what God has done, is doing, and will do. Thank you so much for being such a supportive family, group of friends, and even just loyal blog readers! I know that God created us to need community and I couldn't be more thankful for the incredible community He has given me.
Be Blessed, J. Tate