Okay, I was a little more than excited and yet, afraid to get my hopes up. My husband's job has taken him to many locations. He has been to England, Ireland, Thailand, Amsterdam and most states in the U.S.A. just to name a few. While we, often, talk about my freedom to travel with him to these locations, it rarely fits into our budget. His trip is paid by the company but we foot the bill for my travel. When a trip to Australia came up, I wanted to go.
Out of Reach
We began socking away money and checking prices on airline tickets. The ticket prices were out of reach and yet, we hoped, prayed and saved. I got my passport; just in case.We managed to squirrel away a little over three hundred dollars in a short time and hoped to save the rest. Tickets ranged around $1,500. It was a long shot.
We were new to Columbus, Ohio and new to our church, when we decided to attend a church prayer meeting. During the prayer meeting, the pastor passed out a stack of bills that the church did not have money to pay. My husband looked through the bills before passing them to the next person. On the way home that evening, we discussed the situation. The bills were basic need items such as a water bill. We decided to donate the money that we had been saving and sent it anonymously to the church. A couple of weeks later, my husband purchased my airline ticket for $850 !
The trip to Australia required two flights within the states and then the long flight over the big pond. Our flight to Australia was on a nearly empty plane. We easily stretched out to sleep and I was amazed at how often we were fed during the flight. After the last meal, I put a left over apple into my bag to eat later. Little did I know that Airport security hires a little floppy-eared beagle to sniff out and expose apple-toting arrivals. The beagle approached all of the bags and signaled on my purse. I had been found out! They confiscated my apple but we left the baggage claim smiling. After all, who can get mad at a cute little hardworking beagle who is just doing his duty.
After passing through customs, my husband said, "Now, all we have to do is find the way out. Just then, we saw a sign that said, "Way Out" . Aussies, apparently, do not convolute their language the way we "yanks" do. It is a "Way Out" not an exit and a "Toilet" not a restroom.
Stepping into my promised land on that first day was exciting but I was bleary-eyed, exhausted and in a word "Wornout". Hubby insisted that we stay awake to ward-off jet lag. After checking into the hotel, we explored downtown Sydney but the sights got lost in my weary brain.
The next day when I awoke from the sleep of the dead, adventure stretched ahead of me. As I stepped into the streets of Sydney, I joined the ranks of Aussies heading to work. It amazed me how many people walk to work. Americans, for the most part, have forgotten that they have legs. The people of Sydney still use theirs. It occurred to me as I marched the street with the Aussie workers that I was just one of them and yet, they didn't know that I was on an adventure. As Christians, we have that secret knowledge. We aren't just stepping into the day to day. We are stepping into a charted course, an adventure.
My trip to Australia fulfilled a girlhood dream. I love the country. I love the people and it is a landmark memory. God used that trip to open my eyes. He used that trip to stir my spirit of adventure. And God used that trip to broaden my view of the world. Each day, I dip into the well of that experience and draw out provision for today. God takes us many places over the course of a life. Sometimes, we walk through pain. Sometimes, we walk through joy and we walk through everything in between. Each and every experience adds to our well of provision.
I loved the way you broke it down in bite-size portions. That worked for me. I think it would fit nicely in the testimony section. It's a beautiful piece. I think I'll share it with the saints at church on Wednesday. It shows how God works on our behalf when we walk in His will. You chose to put the needs of others before your own and God provided for your needs. It's a wonderful story of How god provides. Thanks for sharing and keep serving. Janice