Back in the days of college, when God gave me a great roommate with much cooler music taste than me (Thank You, God), we inevitably approached school breaks with hyper enthusiasm, giddy excitement, pure exhaustion...and Peter Gabriel. It's funny the things you can remember (or funnier, perhaps, the things you do not) - but I have sweet memories of packing up my things in the dorm while belting out along with Mr. Gabriel - Grab your things, I've come to take you home...
Oh, the days of the repeat play function on a CD player.
And so, here we are...officially on our way, with tickets purchased (gulp) and visas in hand (yeah, FedEx!). And, of course, not a thing packed.
We leave in a week.
As it turned out, James will be in China for 4 weeks, while we He girls hang out for 6. The hospital in Thailand perhaps could have procured James's drug, though only with weeks of red-tape and without any kind of guarantee. We are all quite content with how things turned out, and these days, with James feeling so much better, we believe that he can likely return for other trips in the not-so-distant future without a problem. (Something that's not always been possible over these past 2 years!)
As you continue to pray for us, pray that God grants us a trip that is refreshing, that God uses us to minister to others, and that He opens doors for continued, future ministry.
James will spend the majority of his time in Dali, but will be doing some travel/ministry around the province as well, so ask that God protects him and keeps him strong! He will have his next infusion the day before we leave - please ask that God prevents any and all ill side effects while we're traveling/away from good medical care.
I will spend a fair amount of time at The Foreign Wife, cooking up a storm, teaching the staff, drinking more Italian coffee than probably wise, and trying to discern (with James & the staff) the best way forward over the next year. (Added bonus - I now know how to make mozzarella!)
And of course, the girls - may God be gracious to our girls who are at various stages of remembering China and their Chinese. (Lydia started giving Caroline Chinese lessons this afternoon. She grimly reported, "Yah, it's not going well.") (Yes, Caroline - the Caroline who first came to the States exclusively speaking Chinese. That Caroline.)
At least we all still love Chinese food.
Now I'm off to do a long list of things that doesn't include packing (yet). Thank you all for your support and prayers! We hope we'll get the chance for an update or two while we're away as well.
(Nitty gritty details for those of you still reading - the girls' last day of school/James's last infusion day is May 25th. We leave at 9am May 26th and will arrive home the morning of Sunday, May 28th. Giddyap.)