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How do you make the decision to relocate your entire family to a foreign country in the course of a week?

I had decided to go on a Anti-trafficking mission trip to Spain and North Africa in late November. Scott (my husband) and I had the unique opportunity to stay in a friends vacation home in Malaga, Spain the week before my mission trip. We spent 10 days together in Spain. It was an incredible opportunity to rest and connect and one we really needed. Although moving our entire family to Spain was not a thought that even crossed our minds during that time, we both felt there was significance to us being in Spain together. We acknowledged a strange comfort in Spain and a sense of home that we couldn’t really explain at the time. We chalked it up to being such experienced world travelers (winky-face) and didn’t think much more about it.

On my mission trip, I was with a team of women working with a few different organizations in Spain and North Africa. The focus of our trip was primarily working with trafficked woman, but we also spent some time in North Africa working with refugees and a feeding program for the poor.

Scott had flown home to be with our 3 boys and every day we FaceTimed and I shared with him and the boys all that was happening on my trip. The trip itself was incredible. The opportunities, experiences, and people had such a significant impact on me and I felt compelled to remain invested in their stories, the work they were doing, and to use what resources I had to help support them once I returned home. What I didn’t know at the time was that as I FaceTimed Scott each day sharing all these stories with him, something powerful was happening in his heart. I didn’t get a glimpse of it until the day I flew home. I arrived back in Seattle after 13 hours of travel and a 9 hour time difference and no sleep. I hugged my babies whom I had missed immensely after being away from them for 20 days. I unpacked and fell on my bed. Scott came in and laid next to me. I went on rambling and sharing random thoughts about my trip and he started asking very specific questions. Questions that quickly made me feel like something beyond just debriefing my trip was happening. As we talked we realized that we were both trying to process some of the same thoughts in our minds about Spain. Our hearts mirrored one another. It was an unanticipated work of the Holy spirit.

In the last two and a half years of being foster parents we’ve learned how to sacrifice our comforts and love recklessly. We’ve set up camp at the crossroads of pain and hope and found peace. The unknowns in our journey have lost their power to intimidate and paralyze. We’ve watched the gospel come alive and felt the abundant joy of being on mission with Jesus. We are not the same people we were two and a half years ago. We’ve become steadfast in our faith and trust in God’s sovereignty, which has allowed us the freedom to follow him in confidence, not needing all the answers. So, when an opportunity to serve, and set free women trapped in sexual slavery opened before us, there was an effortless response in our hearts, “why not us?” The territory is the same, it’s all redeeming lives—snatching the vulnerable from the hand of evil and placing them in wide open spaces of abundant love and grace. We took what felt like a casual step, not a leap of faith. We stepped out in obedience in response to this opportunity…and let me be clear, there’s no special call here. We saw a need, evidence of God at work and an opportunity to join him and we chose to make ourselves available. The moment we said ‘yes’ to this opportunity (the day I got home from Spain), momentum started building and hasn’t stopped since. In the course of a week every detail started falling into place in ways we couldn’t have planned or crafted ourselves. Our journey on mission with Jesus is an adventure that can not be anticipated but one that never disappoints. It has more life and abundance than any comfortable life we could make for ourselves.

We’d like to invite you along for the ride. It will surely be messy and challenging—probably even painful—but also beautiful, fulfilling and fun. You know the risks already, especially if you walked Lucy’s story with us. We will give you opportunity to engage your heart in things you may instinctively avoid exploring and we will ask Jesus to meet you there. Our adventure can be your adventure too. We don’t fully know where this adventure will lead us, we have a sense of being in Spain potentially 2-5yrs. We’re hoping to be in Spain by Fall, so things will be moving quickly.

In His abundant grace,
The Bothels

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