October 06 Update
Here is the website that explains my training in Colorado: www.mti.org/splice.htm
Well I am almost done raising support! I am currently at 95% in total support. I need about $175 in monthly support and hope to have it in the next few weeks so I can buy my plan ticket to Africa and give you a definite departure date.
I am leaving October 30th for Colorado Springs for three weeks of cross-cultural training and will return November 17th. This training will prepare me for the struggles and difficulties of living in a cross-cultural context. I will be taught how to care for myself emotionally and spiritually and learn how to handle trials in light of doing ministry. After this training, I will be home for Thanksgiving and hopefully leave the week or two after.
The reason I am taking time now to do ministry is so I can discern whether I should go to seminary, and learn about/test possible gifts in ministry. The Lord has been active in this area of my life. While doing my internship at St. Jude, I became somewhat interested in the whole idea of doing something in healthcare as a profession when I come back from Ethiopia. This was a challenge to my call to seminary. I realize that there is a lot of time between now and then, but also want to be a steward of that time.
I have felt, however, a continued call to seminary for a number of years. After spending a few months thinking and praying about it, I feel strongly that the Lord is still calling me to pursue seminary when I get back. I would pursue a masters in divinity and possible a masters in counseling. I trust the Lord will further work out this calling while I serve in Africa. I am thankful that the Lord and I have wrestled through this before I depart because this knowledge will be helpful in guiding my interests in the work in Ethiopia. Hopefully, knowing this background will help you understand why I took this step to serve in Africa.
There are two ways to best keep up with me while I am overseas. The first is my blog site, which is jimplunk.blogspot.com. I will try to update that at least once a week as an interactive online journal. The other is Skype, which is an instant messenger that can also be used for making phone calls. My account name is jimplunk. I will try to set up regular times that I will be on it to talk. When I get there I will also send you my mailing address. I will remind you of my contact information as my departure gets closer. Thanks for your support and prayers.
1. Confirmation of calling to Ethiopia in the midst of hard transition with leaving friends and family.
2. That the Lord would already be working to prepare the team and I for my arrival and a work that I can do.
3. Fellowship with other believers in Ethiopia and especially a male accountability partner for encouragement.
4. Safe travel to/from training in Colorado.
5. Loose ends would come together with packing, getting immunizations, and me finishing my Evangelism Explosion training in the next month so I can be ready to leave when I get back from Colorado.
Donations: MTW, P.O. Box 116284, Atlanta, GA 30368-6284
NOTE: Jim Plunk Account: 016125
Monthly Pledges: MTW, 1600 North Brown Road, Lawrenceville, GA. 30043-8141
NOTE: Jim Plunk Account: 016125