Since we leave in a couple of days this will likely be my last post until I get home from Pine Ridge. It never fails to amaze me how completely insane the last few days before a trip can be. Tonight at church was like a comedy of errors. Too much to get into but I'm sure it would make a great movie clip.
I would really appreciate your prayers. Not just for the trip and our mission there, and not just for the crew, but I would appreciate your prayers for me personally. Typically the last week is the week where the crew's expectations begin to clash with reality and that always produces at least one very unhappy crew member. Usually that person is the one who has not attended meetings and is in no way prepared but they rarely see their fault in the matter. Much easier to blame the person in charge - which would be me.
Along with that stress is the stress of getting things in order. Most of our stuff is purchased and packed but there are always last minute items that can't be purchased ahead of time. And there are last minutes details to be worked out. For instance, the lady who is trying to secure a donation of bread told me tonight that a local bakery is going to donate all 300 hot dog buns but that their shipment doesn't get in unitl Friday night. Problem - we load the Ryder truck at 7pm Friday night. I'm not sure what time their shipment gets in, but this could be interesting. Hopefully I will not end up at an all night groc. store trying to find 300 hotdog buns at midnight.
Then Brian and I will drive to another location to pick up another donation of frozen meat at 5am Saturday morning and will then meet up with the crew and be ready to leave at 5:30am. That doesn't leave a lot of time for sleep. The last thing I need is to be tired and grouchy and have to deal with unreasonable people. The vast majority of my crew have been amazingly good natured, flexible, and eager to go above and beyond what I ask, but as I said, there is always one or two people who make things diffiult.
I love these trips. I really do. It's my passion to see the church reach out beyond it's four walls and be Jesus with skin on to the world's needy. And I am willing to continue to do whatever it takes to see that happen. But it is exhausting and stressful work and I will be glad when this trip is over.