The legendary, at least in my mind, trip to Portland, Ore., happened! Technically, the retreat itself was in Vancouver, Wash., but you better believe I made my way to the city for some quality Portland coffee. This summer, when I was interviewing for this internship with Blood:Water, I was told about the retreat we would be taking to Portland, and let’s just say it may or may not have given me even more of a reason to want to intern at Blood:Water. I LOVE PORTLAND. The endless boutique coffee shops, the artistic feel, the beautiful fog that sits on top of the evergreens and city buildings are just a few of the many good things. I was able to experience three different coffee shops while I was there, not to mention an acai bowl from a local juice bar. My taste buds were happy!
Okay, that’s out of the way, let’s get to the real reason I was there. It was incredible to be able to take this journey with Amanda, Aaron, Audrey, and, of course, the two future summer interns at Blood:Water! Getting to know each other outside of the office was definitely one of my favorite parts of being at the intern retreat. Throughout each meaningful conversation we had and Bible passage we read through, I was constantly reminded of Micah 6:8, where we are told to seek justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God. That is what the Gospel looks like as it works itself out in the life of a believer. This is the motivation behind Blood:Water, even in the smallest details of the everyday office work.
I am so blessed to be able to spend nine months as a part of this organization, learning the ins and outs of what partnering with local organizations to provide clean water and HIV care to Africa looks like, all the way from the technical and organizational details, to lives changed and justice attained for our friends in Africa. I am grateful to Murdock Charitable Trust for hosting this retreat and making this experience at Blood:Water possible for me. Our weekend in Portland reiterated the fuel behind my life as a Christian, and the fuel behind the mission of Blood:Water:
To SEEK JUSTICE, LOVE MERCY, and WALK HUMBLY with our God, who became the ultimate servant for us. His grace and love toward mankind throughout his ministry knew no end, just as the grace our Father extends to us daily through the cross of Christ knows no end. He has given us grace upon grace, even in the smallest details of every breath we take. For this reason, we too must seek to extend limitless love and mercy. His grace is our fuel.