Sunday, January 10, 2016

All in a week!

The past week has been a whirlwind of tasks, travel and emotions. There is no way I can describe it all in a short blog. I am so glad I got to live it all though.
As we left America, for these several months in Europe, we felt loved, cared for and blessed. Overwhelmingly so. People stopped by to say goodbye, threw parties, brought meals, cleaned our house and took some of the children shopping for last minute bits.
Fast forward a couple of plane rides later, and we were in England surrounded by family and friends celebrating Nigel's upcoming birthday.  What a good time of seeing people we just have not seen enough of over the last 14 years.
What is it about family, that creates such bonds that even though our kids haven't seen their cousins for over 4 years, they instantly get along again. It was such a highlight to watch them interact with Nigel's family.
Today, we were back at our church in London, drinking in the sights and sounds and renewed friendships.  It is amazing what you notice about a place that was once very familiar, after a long absence. Everything delights in a new and vibrant way.
It was also very sobering to be among people who have faithfully prayed for and supported our family over the years. Our prayers for them felt so inadequate and generic as I heard about the death of a spouse, or the recent cancer treatment or the uncertainty of a future in retirement etc.  What joy now to be allowed into those places in their lives again and be able to pray. Then there were those familiar faces we did not get to see, as they have passed on to glory.
It has been an amazing few days here in England. If this was all we came for, it would seem enough to me.  It is incredible to think there is even more ahead.
On Tuesday we begin our journey down to help staff Incarnate2016, the 12 week long discipleship school for artists. We will be traveling through Belgium, Germany, and either Austria or Switzerland, depending on road conditions as we cross the Alps.  Snow is forecast in those parts of Europe so we will just wait to see. Snow is also forecast for Isola, Italy (our home for the next three months) for the first few days we are there. I hope these Georgia settlers can cope!
We would love your prayers as we travel down in the OM van.

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