About this time last year, our family had been to Florida, enjoyed a cheap but great vacation to the Disney/Orlando area and Abbey and I were knee-deep in Abbey's Vegan Eats, raising support and awareness for her upcoming Mission Year. I don't even know at this point if she'd received her assignment in Houston, Texas. I only knew in a little over a month, our girl was flying out on that big bird, making her way into the wonderful adventure God had for her.
This side of a year's Journey and next Friday, we will welcome home a very different Sojourner of faith. I wish I could convey to you all the blessed ways in which Abbey has changed.
She has learned compassion and patience by serving children who live in deep poverty in one of Houston's toughest neighborhoods. She's had the joy of becoming family with people she had never even met last July.
Because of them and the neighbors that have welcomed them into their lives, she's had a taste of authentic, intentional community and she longs for more...more of God showing up and showing off His Kingdom Love in and through the lives of people committed to serving Him.
As evidenced by Abbey's Vegan Eats, food was already her passion...now it is her rallying cry for the injustice of food deserts and limited, unhealthy choices for those already confined by conventional thought, unfair practices and no means to pull themselves up out of the mire of cheap, traditional American convenience food, that is killing them. She longs to teach others how to live fulfilled, healthy lives, caring for the only temple God gave them...their bodies.
She has still found time to embrace the beautiful and to be creative, but her team and City Directors have helped unleash the inner Artist that has struggled to accept her gifts. Creativity through art, musical theatre, baking and more are necessary survival skills now that she has opened up the toolbox of talent that God had already equipped her with.
Who will come off of that big bird we put her on last year? I'm not exactly sure and I don't know precisely where she's headed next...but I am absolutely certain that with the Holy Spirit as her Guide, it will continue to be the adventure of a lifetime.
We love you Abbey and we long to see your face! (I Thess. 2:17)
If you'd like to see more photos of Abbey's Mission Year experience, follow her on Instagram.