Less than four weeks ago we said hello. Less than four weeks ago we packed a bag from our host family’s house to spend a few days with strangers. Less than four weeks ago we started a new job (or at least changed what it had looked like prior). Less than four weeks ago we were introduced to the body of believers at COTA that have been praying and preparing tirelessly for us. Yet those four weeks have felt like months already.

Everyone trusted there would be other fellows, a place to sleep, a job to work (and be paid), and support from the people at Church of the Apostles. This trust has grown from a blind faith in the program and Ashley into a deep trust of one another through sharing of meals and stories, laughter and dancing, and even crying and conflict. We had an eventful retreat to start the year at Lake Gaston (thanks DT+fam) where we began to build this trust and learn how we each ended up in Raleigh.

As a person who craves rhythm and comfort, I have definitely felt the exhaustion from the intensity of this program and the ever changing schedule, but I wouldn’t change it for anything. Each person has been placed in this program at this specific time in their life for a reason God knows and might make evident now or years down the road. Everyone’s life and walk with the Lord has looked different as do each of our challenges and insecurities. Through this community though we can encourage and be encouraged by one another and the lessons we have learned along the way.

In the past four weeks we have started work, began to mentor children through Neighbor to Neighbor, started class, shared our testimony, met with mentors, and began lifelong friendships. In the past four weeks these people have become my people. My heart breaks when I hear their hurt and see them in pain.

My prayer for the coming month is to continue to trust. To trust what God wants to do with my future. Trust God’s plan for my career. Trust God’s plan for my friendships and relationships. Trust God’s plan when I face challenges. I pray that we all trust God with a child-like faith, honoring him and his power over all things. I fully expect to face challenges and doubts during and after this year, but with trust in the Lord I know I don’t have to be anxious about what is ahead and instead experience and learn what God wants me to experience and learn.


ps if you are checking out the blog contemplating whether or not to apply for Raleigh Fellows, do it and trust the Lord will give you clarity and discernment