This is day three of training at Mission Training International (MTI), and all I can say is, “Ahhh…breathe.” Of course that is a multi-faceted statement because not only does coming here give us a place to hang our hat for a few weeks, but I have also caught a nasty cold. Perhaps a normal cold under normal circumstances, such as living at sea level, but at 8,000 feet….this thing is killer. Breathing at this altitude is a chore. Naturally, I caught the cold on arrival, but thankfully I seem to be improving today. Praying for the worst to be over and to keep it to myself.
Back to breathing in the more metaphorical sense.
It is so good to be here. Good to be just us (as a family), good to take a break from the craziness of travel, good to put a pause on speaking-sharing-support raising, good to re-focus on what we’ve been asked to do.
We’ve been on the road since February 2. It was fun that first day when we were driving on I-5 through Portland and the car stopped. Yes, stopped. In the fast-lane, during the morning rush-hour with no shoulder, and by no shoulder I mean no shoulder…none. We were on our way to meet my aunt and uncles for breakfast and in fact were only about 10 miles from the restaurant, and the car stopped. No power, no lights, no nothing…just rolling along in the fast lane! Rob managed to get us over to the side of the road, which of course is a misnomer because there was no side of the road. Even as far as he could get us we still stuck out into the driving lane…enough to stop traffic completely. It became mildly comical at that point when someone honked at us…’cause we chose to stop there? I called 9-1-1 to send a car for emergency lights (we didn’t even have hazard lights) and then called our emergency tow service to come get us out of there. While I was on the phone in the middle of describing our location, shazam…the radio came on, the lights came on and my window rolled down. I mean shazam! Just like that! Rob slammed the hood shut, jumped in and the car started right up.
After breakfast my aunt and uncles were incredibly gracious in helping us get to a car parts store. They gifted us in many ways…this is my story with them…I have always been blessed by their considerate ways and generosity…each one of them, and at the parts store Rob was able to determine that the battery needed to be replaced and was able to do so right there in the parking lot.
My husband is like that. He can fix anything, anywhere, anytime. Call it Mr. Fix-it superpowers.
So we were back on the road again with about an hour’s worth of work. I am still taken back a bit by all of that. Had the incident occurred anywhere else on our journey we would have been stuck. What would have taken a full-day from our already packed schedule took us one hour, and all that we needed was given to us! Think of the towing, the service station, the fact that we would have paid for work on the car that Rob can do on his own…. It would have been expensive and it would have been time consuming, and possibly de-railing us from the church visits that are so vital to our support raising process. Wow, thank you Lord for Your timing. God is so very good and He provides in so many ways!
So after the car incident we visited the Board for ALP in Redding, shared at Riverview in Santee, spent the night with the Bond’s in Thousand Oaks, shared with the missions boards at First Presbyterian in Long Beach and with First Presbyterian in Oceanside. We are so thankful for each of these churches and hope for church partnership with each one. We were able to share with the congregation at Riverview…that was awesome! Thank you all!
And then we went to Disneyland…
Super fun! We rode everything imaginable at California Adventures and soared through imaginary places at Disneyland. It was the best, and a long-overdue break. We were all desperate to do something fun, just us, and this was a perfect remedy. Just for the record…we didn’t wait in line for anything.
From one kingdom to another… the Magic Kingdom to the Kingdom of Swaziland, all for the glory of the One true King!
Back on the trail again, we visited First Presbyterian in Grand Junction, CO. First with the mission board for lunch on Friday, then we delivered the kids to family in Castle Rock, CO, and then back up the mountain to share with First Presbyterian on Sunday. Wow…we were blown away by the enthusiasm at this church! Thank you Grand Junction!
Driving, driving, driving….all we do is driving….all day…. (you can sing that to the tune of Rawhide) Yep…something like 3,000 miles. From one international border to the other, we drove the length of the west coast, back and forth through L.A., out to Colorado and back and forth from front range to western slope, and Denver to Palmer Lake. By the way, if you ever need to drive through L.A., the best time to do it is during the Superbowl….hardly any traffic!
I am so glad we have a new battery.
I am done with the car.
So now I take a deep breath and lean into this little window of rest while here at MTI. No bones about it, the conversations about culture, family life and ministry are challenging, deep, and often convicting, but we have settled in and are staying put for three weeks. The timing of this couldn’t be any better. You know you have been on the move for a while when your husband gets excited about having dresser drawers and a place to hang our clothes. Yes folks…we have unpacked our things. At least for a moment we have a home!
I like this place… we have two adjoining rooms. Each of the kids have their own bed (a first since we began the journey) and plenty of “living room” space through out to hang with new friends. The program is intense. Rob and I are challenged for sure, but it is rich discussion and we are surrounded by like-minded people who are also in the process of being sent. I am so glad I am here.
Holy smokes is it windy outside right now! We forget how windy Colorado can get…sounds like a hurricane out there. The lights are flickering. Power outage? I guess they seek to train us in every aspect of the missionaries’ life!
Oh…and I added photos to our picasa library of the trip so far. You can peek at them with the link on the right called “more photos @ picasa.”
Thanks for following us.
PS. We have met one of our two funding goals of 100% for our outgoing expenses. Thank you! Now we are looking to finish up with the last of the monthly expenses. Will you help us with the last 2o%? We are almost there! Thank you for your support financially and prayerfully!