Sunday, April 17, 2011


In less than twelve hours, my fifteen year old daughter will be on a plane heading toward Thailand and the plans that God has for her there. Here is what she wrote earlier tonight:


"Jesus said to them, 'Come, follow me! I will teach you how to catch people instead of fish.' They immediately left their nets and followed him."
-Mark 1:17-18

I remember what it was like when I could say that there was only forty days until I left on my mission trip, and then thirty, twenty seemed to pass by before I even had a chance to acknowledge it, and then there was only ten. Five. Four. By this time, I began not being able to sleep at night anymore. I lay awake for hours thinking about what the next week would bring.

Last night at my going away party, as I sat among my closest friends and family as they encouraged and prayed over me, and then when the reality of the time and situation hit that there was only one single day that separated me from leaving for two heart began beating like a jungle drum.

I don't understand it; last year I was more than ready to leave on my month long mission trip to Romania, and even after three long weeks I wasn't even close to being ready to come home again, either. But this time around, I'm not overcome with relief or excitement, but rather an overwhelming, immense...fear.

I'm afraid.

I'm so afraid that I can't even swallow the feeling that is so strong it's become tangible. I know, same old song, "I'm going to miss my family, I'm so inadequate, false humility, false humility, bleh." But no really. And then on top of this terror and anxieties, I'm sad. I'm sad to leave. I have been blessed with the most beautiful biological sisters, incredible brothers, and inspiring parents, and then there's my church which congregation consists of one hundred and twenty people--give or take--whom over the years I have learned to see as my family in Christ, and then you have all my close friends and acquaintances whom I also think of as my brothers and sisters. Also this emotional outlook I've developed over the past few days, that there are only a few days until I leave. has effected the way I see everyone. So in my abundance of good thoughts and appreciation towards everyone, even the random store clerk who checked me and my milk out Friday is counted as my sister in Christ. Yay.

However, through all this hesitation and even dread, the Lord has ceaselessly whispered into my heart, "Come, and follow me, and I will teach you My ways. And Betsie, through leaving and giving up, I will give you so much more."

It's not enough for me to just leave tomorrow on my flight, and it's not enough to just give up two months. It will only be enough--and not even then!--when I am leaving everything to follow the Lord every single day so as to learn His ways, to learn to be a fisher of men. Not just every day in Thailand, though, but every single day of my life beginning this moment, right now.
It is my prayer and hope that all my sisters and brothers, biological and through Christ, all my friends, acquaintances, friendly store clerks, would grab my hand and that we would do just that together.

Always, Betsie

To read more of Betsie's writings, go to her blog:

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