submitted by Emily Long, Team Member of Team Ethiopia 2012 “Life is short.” A lot of people say that, but very few are fortunate enough to really believe it. After my fiancée passed away earlier this year, I now consider myself one of the “fortunate” ones to understand the truth in this often overused cliché. When I mention in conversation that I’m going to Ethiopia with the church in September, the first question is usually, “Why Ethiopia?” Ethiopia may seem like a bizarre destination to some people. Quite honestly, if you had asked me a year ago to list the top 10 countries that I wanted to visit, I’d be lying if I said that Ethiopia made the list at all. However, Africa has been on my bucket list for as long as I can remember. So when the opportunity to travel there with a group from Downtown Church to work on an coffee farm presented itself, my immediate response was “Why not?!?” Not to mention that everything that Downtown Church does is fun and cool. Sign me up.
This isn’t your typical church mission trip. But I have a mission. I’ve learned a lot about myself over the last year. My patience has been tried. I have a new found respect for faith in general; my own has strengthened exponentially. But I want to learn more. Not only about myself, but people and foreign lands and cultures and traditions and ways of life, both literally and spiritually. I want to be challenged. And I’m not sure there’s a better way to do that than to immerse yourself into the Ethiopian culture with 12 other people willing and wanting to do the same.
Life really is short.