Thursday, December 29, 2011

Want to win $250 while helping me get to Uganda??

It’s that time of the year.  You know…post Christmas and pre-tax refund.  The time of year when many of us are just barely making ends meets after spending too much on Christmas gifts and  getting ready to watch our mailboxes closely for that long awaited W2 (unless you usually owe, in that case, I am SO SORRY!)  The last thing you want right now is someone asking you for money for their cause.  I get it.  Really, I do. 

Too bad I’m going to ask anyway, but at least I have a little incentive (thanks to a generous supporter).

In case you haven’t heard me shouting it from the rooftops yet, I’m going to Uganda in March.  In just 12 weeks.  (Give me a moment while I recover from that statement.  As if I’m not freaked out enough by flying to Guatemala often, yes, now I’m going to get on a plane and go to east Africa….deep breaths…..).  Want to know the crazy thing?  I have NO IDEA how I’m going to get there.  I just know I will…somehow, someway.  And that’s where I hope you come in.  I need sponsors in a BAD way.  One to sponsor the whole trip or lots to sponsor small portions of it.  Either way works for me, but whatever it is, I need $2500 for this trip and I need it pronto. 

I’ve been praying and thinking and praying and thinking some more of how to raise the cash.  I’ve gone through every option that I tell people to try when raising money for Guatemala mission trips.  (I may have to rethink some of my suggestions because when it comes down to it, some of them have just been dumb and I would never even try it….sorry past AAB team members who have been on the receiving end of bad suggestions!)

A bake sale won’t work.  My cookies always come out as crispy as potato chips, my cakes always split and (not to share their secrets or anything), but most of my local friends just aren’t the baking kind.  I can’t have a yard sale because I’m yard-saled out.  If you’ve been in my house lately, you’d see that I really just don’t have anything left to sell except my really old TV and I better hold on to it because Danny needs entertainment while I’m in Uganda (not to mention it would only get me five bucks.)  I thought about doing a raffle, but I don’t have anything big enough to raffle off and really, does anyone want to see another person standing in front of Wal-Mart selling raffle tickets?  So here’s what I came up….

We’ll give away money (ok, really a Visa gift card, but if it works like cash, it’s really the same, right?).  Anyone that helps me get to Uganda by sponsoring me with a $10 donation will be entered to win.  For every $10 donated, you get another entry. $10=1 chance, $20=2 chances, $100=10 chances….you get the idea.  We will announce the winner at 5pm CST on January 15th.  If you can’t donate $10, can you sponsor me with $5, even $1?  Seriously, any amount will help.  And PLEASE PRAY.  And again, if by some chance more is raised than what is needed for the trip, all remaining donations will be turned over to AAB to be used for programs to assist families in Guatemala.  So by all means, if we make it to 100% and you still want a chance to win, keep donating.

It’s easy to donate.  You can ChipIn on the top right of the blog using your credit card, you can send it directly through PayPal to terry dot bracey at gmail dot com (be sure to say it’s a donation for Uganda, please) or you can mail me a check or money order (let me know if you need my address).

Now, you have until January 15th, but don’t wait until then to get it done.  Go ahead and do it now before you forget (like I usually do in situations like this).

In all seriousness, I really need your help.  Without sponsors, this trip will not happen.  I can’t wait to see how God is going to work this out.

OK….enough babbling…thanks in advance for helping me finally get to Uganda!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

ChipIn for Uganda

This is a super weird place for me.  Usually I’m the one trying to help people come up with ways to fund their mission trips to Guatemala (or wherever).  It’s hard for me to ask for help, even when I’m asking people for money to support families in Guatemala.  It’s doubly hard for me to ask for personal help, like I’m doing right now.

So everyone knows that I know that for now we have been called to work in Guatemala and most know that I know that I also need to get to Asia (who knows if it’s really Cambodia, Thailand, India…only time will tell) and I’m going to India on a mission trip in September.  Some know that several years ago I also began feeling that familiar tug on my heart for Uganda specifically.  I tried to ignore it, but it hasn’t gone away and now I have the opportunity to possibly begin realizing what it’s all about.  I don’t think these heart tugs to these very specific areas in the world are coincidence so if God opens the door for me to get there (like with India later this year), I have to take it because obviously there is something I am supposed to see or do there.  I didn’t expect 2012 to be full of open doors, but that’s what has happened.  Now I also have the chance to travel to Uganda in March and I am trusting that even though I do not know how I am going to get there, He does and will provide the way.  Both the India and Uganda trips are with our church, with people that we know and trust, so again I do not think it is coincidental.  I am so thankful that after years of praying the doors have swung wide open to these areas of the world that have been on my heart for so long and I do not have to travel on my own or with a group that I do not know to either the first time.

Here’s the deal.  I need help to get to Uganda.  Again, I hate to ask for help, but I keep hearing in the back of my mind, “You have not because you ask not,” and I know that the Lord so often uses others to help people get to where He wants them to be.  I’ve seen it so many times with AAB team members and in the ministry itself.  So I’m asking for your help.  Would you consider donating any amount to help me get to Uganda?  Time is running short and I know it’s right after Christmas when everyone is strapped after all the usual holiday expenses, but if you can donate even the smallest amount, it will be a huge help and I will be forever grateful.  This is one of those times when literally every dollar counts.  You can donate online by clicking on the ChipIn button on the top right of the blog or by check or money order (let me know if you need my address).  Even if you cannot contribute financially, would you join me in praying for this trip…for funding and for the trip itself?

If, by chance, more than enough if raised to cover the trip, all remaining money will be donated to AAB to support families in Guatemala.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What’s In A Name?

Like so many, I am looking forward to celebrating Christmas.  Focusing on what it is truly about is important to me and I am spending time this week reading Scripture that is all too familiar, but still so fresh and new.

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

I am slightly obsessed with names.  It may take me a while to remember a name, but once I get it, I rarely forget it.  And I would much rather put faces with names in ministry…like in Guatemala…or anywhere else in the world…where I believe with all that I am that people are more than statistics and projects.  Each person has a name and a story. 

Perhaps that is why I so love the many names of Jesus.  Because he is more than just someone that was born and died.  Because he has the best story and it is never ending.  As if I had never read it before, what “he will be called” has stirred my heart in a new way tonight and I can’t help but speak his name which describes so much of what he is to me.

He IS called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace and by me he is called Savior, Almighty, Healer, King of Kings, Bread of Life and Living Water, Messiah, Holy One, Emmanuel, Comforter, Redeemer.  Jesus. And this is just what I find myself saying.  A quick google search reveals hundreds of names by which he is called (whether they are accurate or inaccurate I do not know). Oh how I love to speak his name…the one name that has more power than any other…the one that I live and would die for…the one who left his throne to save sinners like me. 

With such a powerful meaning, how could I lose sight of what Christmas if really about?

From our family to yours, Merry Christmas.  May you be filled with peace, love and joy during this most beautiful season.