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“You can choose courage or you can choose comfort. You cannot have both.”

-Brene Brown

Most of my life I have lived among the fearful, timid and anxious. Afraid to try new things; to try hard things. I once believed I wasn’t brave enough and instead of fighting against that belief, I leaned into it. I used it as the crutch of my identity, something I didn’t bother to change or work on. But I know better than that now. It has taken me far too long to stop listening to the lies, and to be able to distinguish the lies from the Truth; the truth about who I am and who God created me to be.

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”

2 Timothy 1:7 (NKJV)

What would it look like if chose courage over fear?

Courage to accept and love who I am. Courage to admit and move on from mistakes. Courage to forgive myself. Courage to learn from a failure. Courage to give myself grace. Courage to be vulnerable. Courage to ask for help when I feel like I’m losing control in my darkness and don’t know how to come back to the light. Courage to seek others when I really want to seek isolation. Courage to find joy. Courage to say no. Courage to say yes. Courage to try something new. Courage to push myself physically in new ways with new strength. Courage to try something hard and challenging.

By leaning into the courage, it has lead me to take on a big and exciting challenge that I have accepted for this year. I have signed up to help raise money for the sports ministry program at the school in Kenya that our church partners with. There is a team of about 30 of us signed up, from all over the country. Together, our team has committed to raising (at least) $175,000 to help launch the new sports program and start the construction on the sports field/facility. That breaks down to around $5,000 that we each need to try to rally. In the efforts to raise money, the other task we have committed too, is raising awareness of the cause by climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania!!

Mt. Kilimanjaro is the highest free standing mountain in the world and fourth overall in the world for summit height. The summit of Kilimanjaro, called Uhuru Peak, stands tall at 19, 341ft. We will be tackling this mountain trek at the end of this year (last week of 2019, into 2020). For myself, the rest of 2019 will be focused on this massive endeavor – fundraising, training, prepping, etc. This blog and website will serve as my hub for news, info, thoughts, adventures, and all that stuff, as I prepare mentally and physically for this adventure. I don’t want to do any of this alone, so please join in on this journey right along with me!

About the cause…

Christian Missionary Fellowship International (CMFI), and program partner Missions of Hope International (MOHI) located in Nairobi, Kenya, have teamed up to create a one-of-a-kind, multipurpose synthetic turf sports field for thousands of African children living in extreme poverty. This will be a state-of-the art sports field will also help to expand the current sports ministry program for 16,000 children throughout Kenya.

The majority of impoverished children have little access to education and no sports programs. Through this unique partnership, CMFI/MOHI will build a low-maintenance turf field that will give access and opportunity to children with no clean, safe place to play in a recreational, outdoor setting.

photo by Dane Voorhees

To give to this ministry, please click on the ‘donate’ button in the right menu selection. That link will take you to the page with more info and how you can donate. That page specifically is for the sports programming fundraiser; if you would like to donate to my overall trip costs to get to Africa to see these kids we’re helping and then climb that mountain, please email me for more info.

4 comments on “The Journey Begins

  1. Congrats on moving past your fear and into your calling!! Our mighty God has mighty plans for you sweet sister!!
    -Lisa Wenninger

    Liked by 1 person

    1. vanessacote says:

      Thank you Lisa! I’m excited to see how God unfolds this year 🙂


  2. Christina says:

    Wow you are so brave to tackle something I believe each of us struggle with… having courage. I’m looking forward to your posts and seeing you reach your amazing goals

    Liked by 1 person

    1. vanessacote says:

      Thanks for your support and encouragement Christina!


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