After I told my parents, things got easier. I wasn't stressing about keeping secrets from them. And it was then that I could really concentrate about whether or not I was going to take this seriously, or if I wanted to go back to my original plan and go to Sierra and become an emergency room nurse...
15 days after I talk to my parents, I get a Facebook message:
And with that message, it all became real to me.
These people heard a rumor (obviously started by my dad..) and wanted me to come spend time with them in Ethiopia? It didn't make sense to me! I was just an 18 year old girl, hadn't graduated from high school yet, and they were inviting me to come spend time with them? The same people I was having dreams about? Coincidence? I think not!
I didn't know what to say. I shut my computer, and just sat there. I prayed again right then, and then went to sleep.
I told me mom the next day, I was obviously giddy and excited, that it all might happen. I didn't know if it would happen. I was still praying about it. But now the door was open. And it made it more real to me that if this was really what God wanted to do, than he would have his way and make it happen.
For two weeks I opened that Facebook message to reply in some way and just didn't know what to say. I mean, I really didn't know if I wanted to go yet. But when I did finally decide that I thought this was something I really wanted to do, I ended up talking to a friend, and they told me just to share my heart with Levi and if he still wanted me to come after I told him my story than I would decide to go.
So two weeks after I got the message, I sent one of my own to Levi, saying everything about my heart for Africa, how it started years ago! In 6th grade I received a prophesy about Africa, and that was the initial seed planting. I thought that with the adoption of Tsehay and Fekadu that they were what that prophesy was about. But it came back up when praying about what to do after high school! So I went on for a bit about that, and sent my message.
You know with the new Facebook messages, how you can see when people read the messsages? Yeah. I checked back constantly to see if the message was read, just so I could see the response when/if he responded. I saw that he had checked it one morning and just sat there waiting to see if he would respond. Well he didn't respond that day.. Or the day after.. Or the day after. My mind went negative. So he read my message and just ignored it. Awesome. "See, this wasn't a thought from God. He never really wanted you to go," I told myself each day that I didn't get a response. I remember almost crying to the friend that told me to share my heart, and told them that he ignored my message, so it wasn't from God. That friend told me to have patience. Because he was on the other side of the world, where the power might be down or whatever might have come up. I told them they were right, and went to bed.
Of course due to my finally beginning to be patient, and calmness about the whole thing, I woke up the next morning and had a message from Levi... The first line saying "Emma. I have been trying to get time to sit down at y compter and write you but every time I have the power is out or the internet goes down ...." So my friend was right. I was just being too impatient. The rest of the message said that they wanted me to come back with them in October when they returned to Ethiopia after a summer here, than I could! For however long I wanted, a month, six, a year! So with that message not only was the confirmation about going there, but also that long term was possible! God is so good!
I made my decision that I was going to go within the next few days. And Levi and I talked a little bit more back and forth about random things. He explained to me about what I would be doing, and the job sounded perfect for me. He was coming to America soon and we would talk then.
It was all coming together. I had a place to stay. A job to do. And Jesus with me to make it all happen.