Saturday, July 27, 2013

Our Journey-Day Two

...but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. 
They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, 
they will walk and not be faint. 
(Isaiah 40:31 NIV)

This is my prayer for tomorrow! We all need renewed strength after jet lag and sightseeing! Today was a wonderful day of seeing some amazing sights and eating many different foods. 
I don't think anyone in the group should have trouble sleeping tonight!

I am going to post a few pictures but more will come another day after a little rest!

The group who attempted to climb to the top of the Great Wall
The group who actually survived climbing to the top of this portion of the 
wall and now have the medal to show for it.  

 The day was very hazy and overcast so the photos are not the greatest.
This is truly an amazing sight to behold!
Our day ended with a few more foods that were very interesting.
We shared lots of laughter and many stories with so many new friends today.
What a blessing God has given us! 
We can't wait for tomorrow as we head to another area to love on some 
precious children.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Our journey-Day One

Once the rest of our group arrives you will get to see some other faces, but for now Brandon has been very cooperative posing for photos! Today he had his first experiences with some real Chinese food, and in case you didn't know, it doesn't look at all like our Chinese food in the US! We ate a very good breakfast in the hotel and he tried chop sticks and sushi for the first time.

After breakfast we met a precious lady, Lyndsay, and spent the day with her family.  Lyndsay and her husband Bill, do an amazing work being God's hands and feet as they operate the Morning Star Foundation Children's Home.  We had the opportunity to go play with the babies and love on them for a little while.  Then we had a great lunch with Bill, Lyndsay and their two darling daughters.  All ten of the babies in their care have very serious congenital heart defects.  Due to confidentiality reasons I am not posting photos at this time.  However, PLEASE click on the link above and look at their website.  This is a wonderful organization to support monetarily and through your prayers.  They are working hard to save these babies and love on the ones who can not be saved so that they know what it is like to experience the love of a family.  We heard some wonderful stories and thank God for this family and how He is using them to change lives. 
                           After lunch we got a good laugh at the lack of spell check going on here.

Tonight the rest of our group arrived and we had a nice dinner typical Chinese style. Sorry if I cut some of you out...I never claimed to be a photographer.

Travel time

For those who may be new to my blog and may not know, my sweet husband works for the airline and  thus the reason we fly standby.  It has its perks and it also causes some moments of tension wondering if we will make it on a flight.  We were very blessed this time to have the opportunity to fly business class, thus giving us much more room to rest and plenty of food.  The time passes so much more quickly when you are sleeping, eating and watching movies. 

Once we arrived at the Beijing airport, with its cute little characters, we were met by a sweet guide named Summer and a driver who took us to our hotel. The Metro Park Lido Hotel, where we will wait on the rest of our group to arrive. 
Before going to bed, our family was just waking up and we had to take a little time to skype and see those sweet faces!  I may get frustrated with technology at times, but I LOVE IT at times like these.


Chicago layover

After getting only a couple of hours sleep Tuesday night we headed to the airport for our 5:45 am flight to Chicago, arriving there at 8am.  That gave us MANY hours for a layover before heading on to Beijing at 7pm.  So we made the most of it and took the metro into the city to do a little sightseeing.  We had some authentic deep dish pizza, toured Millennium Park and the original library now turned museum and still had 3 hours before our flight.  The following are just a few pictures of our day in Chicago.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Glory in the garage

Goofy title? Yeah, maybe, but when you read how God showed His glory in my garage I hope it will strengthen your faith like it did mine!

As Andria and I talked about going on this trip, Brandon decided he wanted to go. That was great news, except for the fact that the cost was listed as $3,900-4,200 and multiplied by two it was an amount far beyond what we could even imagine! He really wanted to go so he was willing to help raise the needed funds. During the meantime, we enlisted another traveling partner, Beth.  

As we worked, prayed and planned how we would all afford such a mission trip we made plans for a garage sale at our house a few weeks ago.  The kids all had a great time selling lemonade and helping raise money for their "friends in Ch*na" with no mommies and daddies."

Then something totally unexpected happened!  While we were talking,  a man came up and asked if David's car was for sell.  This is the car that was parked in the back of our house that was NOT for sell!  David came in the house and told me about it and I said, "SELL IT!"  

David decided to sell it and The best part was that the young man bought it for the same price David paid for it THREE YEARS AGO! Now, that is ONLY GOD!

Thank you, Lord, for providing what we needed above and beyond what we could have ever dreamed.

It reminds me of the awesome song with the lyrics, I know who goes before me, I know who comes behind, The God of angel armies is always by my side.

How it all began

Three years ago God took part of my heart and left it in a country for a reason I did not understand.  As we prepared to return home with our precious daughter in June 2010, I had no intention of returning unless it was just to bring Lia back to see her culture someday.  God had a different plan though, when I said I would follow Him wherever He leads.  So, earlier this year when I learned of a mission trip to Lia's homeland my heart was immediately drawn to this trip.  While at Falls Creek during spring break, with our youth from church,  I mentioned to a friend how I would love to go on this mission trip.  She quickly said she would love to go also.  Thus began the prayer and preparation for the journey that we began yesterday.  I don't know what lies before us, but we have already seen God go before us and work out details that only He could have orchestrated.  My next post will tell a short story about just one of the details of God's provisions in a way far beyond our imagination in the days leading up to today. 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Getting ready!

It has been quite some time since I have blogged and I know many of my followers my have dropped off but I plan to be doing lots of blogging this next week. Tomorrow morning my youngest son, Brandon and I will board a flight for Chicago and then later in the day we will fly to Beijing, China.  We will meet up with the other 6 people in our group on Friday where we will begin a wonderful week of work in an orphanage. Would you please pray with us as this trip begins and follow along on our journey?

Since I know pictures are what most people are looking for, I will leave you with a few of my favorites!

                               Ten days of not seeing these sweet faces my be rather difficult!
                 The newest addition to our family, Ranger, is getting spoiled very quickly!
God has given me five wonderful blessings who call me MOM and there are so many around the world who do not have anyone to call by that name.  I can't wait to love of some of them and pray I never take the gifts I've been given for granted!