My not-so-baby baby girl is on a mission trip in La Paz, Bolivia with a group from The Diocese of Albany. Today is their first whole day on the ground there, and I imagine they are feeling more rested after having arrived very early yesterday morning on the overnight flight from Miami. I’m praying that they are all feeling well and suffering no ill effects from the 14,000+ feet geographic location, and that the abrupt return to winter hasn’t phased the hearty north easterners at all.
After some prayer time this morning, I was reflecting on the blessing and challenge that is a teenage daughter. I love her so much! She amazes me. And, like many teenagers and their moms, we frustrate each other (mostly when my priority for her time and hers don’t match). That’s so ok, in fact, I think it’s probably how it’s supposed to be as she learns to make her own choices and manage the results, as she negotiates the emotional and social minefield that being a high school aged girl looks like.
Leaving for this trip was particularly hard for her. It’s not the first time she’s gone on a mission trip, but a series of things that might seem minor from the outside conspired to make it hard to go. Things like not getting to see her best friend before the trip (and said bff leaving for her own trip shortly after Cathie’s return), my having to back out of the trip a while back, and her brother having a particularly bad series of attacks making it necessary for us to leave the airport sooner than we’d hoped. All of that, together with being the well-sibling of the sick kid whose illness dictates much of our schedule (and the abrupt changing thereof), made for some tears at the terminal. Understandable, yes; nonetheless difficult.
She’s such a capable person! She’s nearly there in all the skills she needs for life, and her Lord has given her such wonderful gifts. Adam says she gets the “blind stupid faith that makes no logical sense” concept and lives it out. I pray this trip will be just that for her, living it out and inviting others into the life as she does. I know her gifts for loving people where they are, her compassion and her ability to share life with new people will serve God well on this trip. I’m praying her little photo album of her family and friends will be a great tool for opening the door to hearing about the lives of the people she meets and serves.
She’s equipped and sent in ministry, she’s living the life… I can hardly wait to hear how amazing this experience is for her, and for the Kingdom.