"Pack my bags and mount my horse I'm gonna ride on into the next town." (Repeat)

by - July 02, 2011

I tend to always have a song running through my mind. Often times knowing only a few words that I repeat over and over and out loud. Thankfully, my roommates are gone this morning as I'm singing the only words I know to to this 90's song while packing to leave for Ethiopia today! Thanks to all of you who have read my blog, donated, and especially are praying for our trip. I am so excited to be with my friend when she first meets her children, and to spend a week with the 20-30 kids at the orphanage in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Can you imagine what Jess and Ryan must be feeling today? Click here to read how Ryan is feeling. I know enough to know - that I have no idea what to expect from this trip. I trust the Lord with the details. He has shown through your prayers and giving that He is providing the way. I have a feeling I will be coming home with a broken heart for the children I meet there, and a new understanding of the need for God's grace and mercy.

Jessica and I will fly out of DFW this afternoon around 5. After spending the night in Washington D.C., we fly to Ethiopia. The 13 hour flight will have us safely in Addis Ababa on July 4th Click here to read more about Addis Ababa. We will be staying at a guest house the orphanage is affiliated with, and will be provided an escort daily to the orphanage. Click here to see where we are staying. We will be allowed to be with Solomon, Rahel, Yoseph and Eyasu every day.

I have my camera packed, Charles Swindoll's "The Grace Awakening," and some of my favorite relaxing movies loaded on my netbook: John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara in The Quiet Man, Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan in You've Got Mail, Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant in Notting Hill, and Nicholas Cage in National Treasure. Apparently I like movies with any take on a Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet type relationship (I'm such a girl), and National Treasure, because at heart I want to be a treasure hunter. I'm going to keep my eye out for the Ark of the Covenant while in Ethiopia. There is a theory its there: Click here to read the claim.

I have been vaccinated for meningitis, typhoid, tetanus, whooping cough, Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. Those are the suggested vaccinations for going to Ethiopia. That is an disconcerting list of diseases I have never even considered. We have been cautioned to never drink the water, to only eat things that have been boiled or fried, and to watch for pick-pockets. I know so many friends who have been on international missions and this is all second nature to them, but I’m still learning these ropes. My cousin David who has served in Burma for years mentioned that I need to be concerned about “earwhigs.” I think he was kidding. I don’t even know if those are real. I refuse to google it. I would rather be ignorant on some things.

Friday, July 8th we will leave Ethiopia around 10pm and fly 17 hours back to Washington D.C. overnight. It takes 4 hours longer to get home. Seems appropriate. I appreciate your prayers for safe travels, that we remain healthy, and for the relationships that will begin to be forged there. Please keep Jessica in your prayers as she travels while expecting, and pray for Ryan as He trusts the Lord with her on the other side of the world.
Life is so interesting. I wonder what's next.

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  1. I'm going to miss your singing "a few words repeated over and over and out loud" this week, BUT it will remind me to pray for you, Jessica and Ryan without CEASING! I'm in awe of how God is moving through this family and using you in the process. May He open your eyes to a "whole new world" of adventure and wonders of His majesty and may He open your heart to receive His love and blessings He already has lined out for you in the week ahead. I'll miss you! Be safe... and remember... it is ONLY a myth that earwigs crawl into the ears of their sleeping victims!!!! Love you! - Kari