ethiopia changed me.
god used my time in ethiopia to transform me.
I truly believe that I am coming home a different person.
as one of my besties jenna said, a new woman, a new wife, a new mommy and a new friend.
i’m a summer girl. always have been. I have loved every summer since I can remember.
going to camp(s), playing on the lake with friends & family, baseball games, disney world, concerts, road trips.
the 4th of july is my second favorite holiday behind christmas.
I love the warm texas summer nights.
I love the break from the normal go-go-go schedule that the rest of the year holds.
I love the sunshine.
so it’s funny if you think about it.
one of the best summers of my entire life was spent in a big-dirty-rainy city, hanging out next to the trash dump.
ethiopia changed me.
it changed my priorities, it changed the way I look at life and people.
it changed the way I define family.
I asked god all summer (and so did Stephen) to give us a big vision for our future.
we want so desperatly to serve Him in a big way, and I wanted to use my time in Addis to figure out what that may be.
there were times I was frustrated, not feeling like I had a purpose.
the enemy was really firing at me this time.
it really wasn’t until the past week that God revealed to me His vision for us. and showed me why I was supposed to be in Ethiopia all summer.
and it’s summed up in one word: family.
I’m a mom, a sister, and a wife.
and being a mom & sister don’t look like you might naturally think here.
god blessed me this summer with getting to spend time with my two babies, camp + asher. to really bond with them. and I am grateful every second for the time we had together in their home country.
god also allowed me to spend time & build deeper relationships with our two sponsor daughters. tsion (10) and abenezer (12) - who call us mom & dad. (who call camp + asher their brother and sister)
I became sister to many.... I can’t tell you how much joy it brings me when my boys call me sister.
and, my notes that read, “my beloved mom” and “dear my wonderful mamma Wynne” from my sons Eyob + Biligne brought serious tears to my eyes.
we are family.
and god is revealing more and more to me that THAT is what counts.
whether you look alike or not.
god can start a bond between two people that look nothing alike & don’t have the same blood running through their veins. those things don’t matter. love does.
and even if all I did this summer was be a mother and spend time with my big crazy ethiopian family, then my time served it’s purpose.
I will never look at family the same.
it’s made me more appreciative of my natural family than ever. the way my parents, in laws, sisters, grandparents, grandparents-in-law, cousins, aunts, uncles, sister-in-law have loved us and supported us has been amazing.
especially seeing and spending time with kids this summer who don’t have anything like the family I have.
my parents dropped everything & came to Ethiopia to meet their 2 grandkids - what? I love my family, and although we are somewhat dysfunctional (what family isn’t!), I love them and they love us. we are family -- always.
living in midland, away from natural family, we’ve built family here too. a church family. people who come to our house at midnight the night before a big trip to pray for us. people who work their tails off while mommy is away to make sure everything is perfect for c+a. people who cook us meals. people who fight to protect us & love us the way we need to be loved in this season. family.
in more ways than I can count.