Greetings! I noticed I've gained a few new followers this week. Welcome! Please (No really, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE!) feel free to leave a comment below... I graciously accept all feedback, encouraging statements, funny stuff, and good ol' kicks in the pants. And, thank you for stopping by. I appreciate it!
Now, before we get started, I must warn you that this third installment promises to be a doosie of a long one... Because, I have promised myself, come Hades or high CO2, I'm wrapping it up tonight.
The story of two rookie missionaries on their first journey back to the United States... How one of them stopped the other from succombing to madness... And why the GRACE of God is much more than a mindless cliche.
If you'd like to catch up, I've provided links to PART ONE and PART TWO
Let's see, where was I? Broke? Covered that. Infant in tow? Check. Ah yes,... Completely refreshed we boarded the plane... Ten-ish hours later we landed in Miami, and we immediately boarded another airplane, were picked up in Detroit, and lived happily ever after... Or, maybe all the stinkin' flights headed to Michigan were full that night... Did I mention we were broke? Not broke as in "not a lot of spare cash", but rather, broke as in, "We can't ride the pony at Meijer" broke. Sigh, time to consult that "God" guy again. We prayed, as we made ourselves comfortable on some familiar airport benches. Michael put in a phone call to the person who was to pick us up the day before (until that didn't work out), to tell them not to get us now (because, that didn't work out). Now, I'm a goin' rabbit trailling a bit here, but every time I had traveled through Miami, I thought, "It would be so nice to stay in the Miami Airport Hotel, maybe someday... " Hmm, guess what the voice on the other end of Michael's phone conversation offered?
I really enjoyed the free night and room-service breakfast at the airport hotel. But, what to do about the fee for missing our connection flight on the previous day? Yeah, we prayed, on the benches. We still had no money, but we got in line for the next flight anyway. We handed the woman at the counter our tickets for yesterday's fights and asked how much it would be to change itinerary. Her reply - "IF I look that these and see that you missed your flight yesterday, I'll have to charge you $200 each. But (she flipped them over and handed them back), I'm not going to look, please board the aircraft and enjoy your flight." YES. That REALLY happened.
Upon arrival at our final destination, I began unpacking our urgently needed items, like Desitin and baby wipes. As I searched through the contents of the diaper bag, my fingers found themselves grasping an unfamiliar object... the wrapped gift from our God-sent hosts in Buenos Aires! Curiosity at peak level, I unwrapped it... Are you ready for it? It was a ceramic christmas ornament displaying an all-true bible verse (you know, as opposed to all the rest of those nutty Bible verses). It said, "DIOS ES AMOR", which is Spanish for "GOD IS LOVE." Two weeks after our arrival, I drank in the smell of eggnog and cinnamon as I admired the Christmas tree, my eyes and heart being drawn to one very special ornament in particular.
Who knows what ugly chaos might have ensued, if I had gone with my initial reaction at the airport in Argentina (to throw a tantrum and worry myself into a mild stroke)? Jesus, Thanks for what you showed me on that journey... and thanks for that ornament, it's still my favorite. And Michael, thanks for your wisdom. Also, I like your goatee.
There you have it. I love you guys. Thanks for reading.
1st John 4:8 "...God is love".... Romans 8:28 "...All things work together for good to those who love God"
PS. - I realize the type on this entry is ridiculously tiny... I'm working on it.