Random Things I Learned from Deputation

As we were driving around Chicago I heard a little voice say, “Mommy, my tummy hurts….”. Inside of me I was screaming, “Oh no, please no…not here, not now.” There was no way for Kevin to even pull over in the bumper to bumper traffic. It was dark and as I jumped over the front seat I could feel and smell sickness everywhere – all over him, the car seat, the floor. As I stripped his soaked clothes off him I secretly wished we didn’t have to make this trip, yet I managed to find a blanket to wrap around him and hold him close until we made it home….

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There are so many of these stories I could share…

….running out of gas when it was freezing outside in the middle of the night. It took the tow truck guy two hours to get to us. By the time he arrived we were all snuggled in the backseat under loads of blankets praying God would send help soon…I just wanted to cry and be home, but instead I sang songs to Noah to keep him sleeping.

….staying with the crazy cat lady…

…when my toddler pulled the fire alarm at the church…

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…the time our five months old was having trouble breathing and we had to leave in the middle of the night for the ER. I was a nervous wreck holding my sick baby and then as Kevin reached to open the door we looked at each other with a blank stare thinking to ourselves, “Do we walk into the host family’s bedroom and wake them or should we sneak out and leave the door unlocked?”

…when my toddler walked out of the church bathroom with no underpants on….

The list is long, yet we are thankful God has protected and provided for us during this unique chapter of our lives. Last night I wrote a random list of things I learned – I don’t want to ever forget how this journey felt. Deputation affected every area of my life – it left nothing untouched. It was demanding spiritually, emotionally, and physically. I experienced being tired on a whole new level, yet I also experienced God’s grace in a way I had never felt either. 2015-03-19 15.06.05

Random Things I’ve Learned on Deputation

  1. Be yourself
  2. Never eat eggs from hotels
  3. Always keep grocery bags in the back seat they can be handy for many things
  4. Travel with lots of wipes – clorox wipes, baby wipes, shout it out wipes, you name it!
  5. Be fully present in EVERY moment
  6. Serve
  7. Be humble
  8. Look for opportunities to encourage others
  9. Sometimes it’s not good to smile and nod when you don’t understand people
  10. Don’t have any expectations for how you should be treated
  11. Communicate with your spouse often about details and come up with a secret code for “no”, “yes” ha!
  12. Pray – a lot!
  13. Remember deputation isn’t forever
  14. Make a packing list2015-06-09 22.24.46
  15. Keep your family/kids first – stay in the nursery if you have to.
  16. If someone brings something to a Potluck in a Pampered Chef dish it usually is good.
  17. It’s ok to say no sometimes
  18. Know your limitations
  19. Travel with detergent pods not a bottle of liquid detergent
  20. Make your van a happy place – cheery music, keep it clean and smelling nice
  21. Say goodbye to alone time, but take alone time. Sometimes Kevin would drop me off at Target just so I could be alone for thirty minutes.
  22. Take pictures and journal – it’s a once in a lifetime journey
  23. Make friends and keep up with old friends
  24. Smile
  25. Have an extra church outfit hanging in the backseat “just in case”
  26. McDonald’s have the dirtiest bathrooms after gas stations of course
  27. Travel with a snack basket
  28. Barnes and Nobles make for good stops – train table, WIFI
  29. Laundry days are happy days. 2015-01-26 12.56.05
  30. Always travel with thank you cards, hostess gifts, and mints 😉
  31. If possible, iron ahead of time
  32. Eating out after church with small children is a challenge (that’s the nice way of saying it)
  33. Keep in mind that deputation is your ministry – God is bringing people through your life that He wants you to minister to – go out and be a light!
  34. Drink lots of water and travel with Airborne/ take vitamins
  35. Potty training on the road is HARD
  36. Exercise – I rarely did, but it would be ideal – ha! IMG_0393
  37. Don’t let your testimony become rote – keep it fresh.
  38. Stay motivated by remembering your end goal – to tell your field about Jesus
  39. Work hard and be 100% wherever you happen to be
  40. Sanitize your hands often
  41. Make travel time productive 2015-03-16 10.15.53
  42. Be creative how you can help your husband/children
  43. Pack your own sheets…maybe even towels
  44. Say thank you and show lots of gratitude
  45. Don’t be lazy – deputation is your job so treat it that way.
  46. Being sick on the road is horrible! Ick.
  47. If you are under three hours away from home, choose to drive home rather than stay the night
  48. Be flexible! Be Flexible! Be Flexible!
  49. Involve your children
  50. Pack mostly solids and use accessories to change outfits 2015-03-30 12.49.09
  51. Be prompt with communication
  52. Keep a can of Sprite in the van incase you are in the middle of nowhere and get sick. I learned the hard way in the UP of Michigan – longest 48 hours of my life. ;(
  53. Be gracious
  54. Don’t be a picky eater – just swallow it and take a drink
  55. Over plan/ over prepare/ and be prompt (early) to engagements
  56. Keep Tylenol handy
  57. Take initiative and do any task assigned eagerly
  58. Chick-fil-A is the best stop with kids hands down
  59. Remember time zones…IMG_0072
  60. Just relax. You’re gonna be ok.
  61. Staying in homes can be like a box of chocolates as Sam says…you never know what you’re gonna get.
  62. Google “play cafe” in every big city you visit – they are normally a slice of heaven on earth if you have kids. The kids play and you can sip coffee – a rare moment of bliss.
  63. Realize you will travel with lots of bags – food bag, medicine bag, diaper bag, church bag, camera bag, toiletry bag, maybe a shoe bag, dirty clothes bag, toy bag….yes, lots of bags and don’t forget your extra sheet bag. 😉
  64. Travel with your own oatmeal packets – you can save a fortune on breakfast that way – all you need is hot water (saves you from eating hotel eggs – ha!) . On that note….all Paneras have a microwave….pick up a fresh coffee and warm up your oatmeal. Voila! Also, traveling with canned soup can save you from having to leave your hotel room for dinner.
  65. Do your research on the church you are visiting – it makes a difference if you can mention things you learned from reading up on them.
  66. Find fun things to do in the area you are visiting. We found so many free interesting things to see during our trips. IMG_0439
  67. Enjoy and have fun!

Comments & Responses

3 Responses so far.

  1. Laurie Nunez says:

    I love #16! As a Pampered Chef consultant, I concur 😉 it was so nice to have you guys at our missions conference this year – Berean Baptist Church in Rockford, IL

  2. Charla Peery says:

    Have so enjoyed your communications about deputation. I continue to pray for you all as you journey to England/Wales and for guidance as God shows you your field of ministry. God bless you both and your precious boys.

  3. I do commend you for all your faithfully prepared information for prayer keeping us up to date and fully understanding all that was going on for you.

    It is always good when folks are fully honest. I really appreciated your endeavours. Thank you.

    God bless you and provide for all your needs as He
    HAS till now He will continue to do so. Your efforts to achieve with two small children has been amazing I must say.

    loving greetings from Mary x

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