I am burdened with glorious purpose. But unlike Loki in The Avengers, I neither seek the destruction of Earth nor revenge upon an estranged sibling. My glorious purpose is to be available to the Lord for His glorious purposes, whatever and whenever those may be. No one dies, and nothing gets blown up, but it’s still pretty exciting stuff.
Take my years of directing Vacation Bible School at our church. Hardly a year went by without some monumental prequel. My first year, I served (did I mention this involved doing choreography while singing for three consecutive hours daily?) exactly eight weeks after having a complete hysterectomy. One year I was deliberately T-boned a week before VBS by a guy who was convinced he was Satan and who had just assaulted two of my friends. I watched as he conducted his police interview while in a fetal position in the trunk of the new Jag he rented without insurance. That day was the first chapter in my history of cervical problems.
Another year I was on the verge of lung surgery for a longterm infection. One year I smiled, sang and did stunts and choreography through gallbladder attacks. One year I sprained my wrist, and another year I blew my knee. Oh, I could go on.
Then there was my stint in the Philippines, where I led VBS for missionary kids while their parents attended a conference. On my first morning, I had a severe reaction (picture a giant red hive with arms and legs) to a new lotion known for being benign. I spent my entire week downing Benadryl like it was candy every four hours and then peeling away sheets of skin like some giant, freakish reptile. And this in a culture where everyone is obsessed with ivory skin, which mine is when it’s not covered in hives or scales.
But I persevere in all this because God blesses my efforts, no matter how much I go through in answering His call. People come to understand that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. Lives are changed. And I eventually bounce back.
So I’m constantly praying about new opportunities. And one recently caught my eye: a trip to Anchorage, home to nearly half of Alaska. Most Alaskans do not belong to a church or understand the message of the gospel, which is, simply put, that Jesus saves.
For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in Him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?
– Romans 10:13-15a
While in Anchorage, I would be one of two people in charge of a weeklong camp for kids in a high-density housing area. We’ll be partnering with the church community there as well as a missions organization. I plan to pack plenty of Benadryl.
And here’s your opportunity to partner with me. If you feel led to offer support toward my trip, send a donation of any amount toward my $1,700 total to Aloma Church, 1815 S.R. 436, Winter Park, Fla. 32792, and write “Cheri Henderson – Anchorage” in the memo field. That last part is really important so that your giving actually goes toward my trip and not into the general church fund. By partnering with me, it would almost be like going on mission together, except that you wouldn’t have to remind me of what to pack or alert me when I’m breaking out in welts.
Most of all, pray. Pray for the unreached people within our own nation and around the world. Pray that hearts will be open for the good news of salvation in Jesus. Pray for our team. And pray for your own heart, that it too would be burdened with glorious purpose.