Meagan and I are SO excited about going to Haiti with Mission of Hope! We leave on May 14th, four days after my graduation, and will return on the 21st, just in time for my bar exam prep course to begin. I want to do this trip for a lot of reasons, but one of the main reasons is because I kind of feel like my time in law school has been all about ME and MY goals and what I want to do with MY life, and I'm ready to give back and focus on everyone but me for a little while. I don't want to make law school sound like a totally self-absorbed place or anything, because it's not, and it's of course not like I haven't been caring for others during my time here, but I think you may understand what I mean. I feel like most people in graduate or professional school can relate--you're there in the first place to pursue your own goals and build your career and the life you want, and at least in law school, there's the added competition to get good grades, which come at the expense of your classmates' grades because of the mandatory grading curve . . . you can't all win. And when one person does well in something or takes an opportunity, in general, that's one less opportunity for everybody else. This is just the nature of the beast and the way it is. And everything is always geared toward what YOU want with your life and where YOU eventually want to live and what type of law YOU want to practice, and being totally immersed for three years in one goal to better yourself can make you feel self-absorbed after awhile, even if you are not.
So that's the environment I have been in since 2011, and I am so glad to have very nearly achieved my goal of graduation from law school, but what better way to celebrate that than to step outside myself for a little while and give something back? Because before I know it, I will be immersed in preparing for the bar exam and then in working long hours as a brand-new attorney, and it will once again be all too easy to forget the world around me that needs Jesus and needs hope and to only focus on me, since this is everyone's natural tendency. So this is how I want to celebrate this milestone, because the country of Haiti needs the love of Jesus, and as I have been blessed, I want to bless others.
Meagan and I had a very slow start to our fundraising efforts for the trip. We created a website and told our friends about it, but several weeks went by before any donations came in, and we were really uncertain about whether God was really leading us to go. In the past couple of weeks, we have been able to raise just more than half of what we need, which was great but still left both of us nervous about where to scrape up the other $500 apiece, plus money for incidental expenses and vaccinations and anti-malaria medications and so forth that we will need (especially because I am in school and do not earn much money right now). But yesterday--in just one day--we received a very unexpected and very generous gift of $1,000, plus $200 from another donor, and we are now basically fully funded for the trip itself and only need a few small funds to cover a couple of the expenses I mentioned above. This was such a huge blessing, and I couldn't believe it when I found out. God is so good! And now I am sure that we are supposed to go, even though I have sensed for a long time that we are, but have also known that I can't be irresponsible financially and go even if we have a major shortfall of funding. Well, we certainly do not come up short anymore!
More updates to come soon as we continue to prepare for the trip!