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Catching up on the thanks...

As we went to the Philly area last week, I left Troy with a heavy heart.  The night before I had a wonderful small group time with my girls (see below post) and was really feeling the weight of the loss that was facing us as we left this area.  The excitement I had previously felt about getting to World Harvest and meeting with a lot of people down there seemed to be drowned in my sadness and weariness.
But God is good.
As we got closer I managed to pass time by taking a little nap (I was not driving, obviously!) and when I woke up it was as if my head was clear and my  heart was ready to look at the here and now and not at what we will be gaining or losing in future.  I am really bad at that - the here and now.  As we were being prayed for by the WHM team at the sending center, someone prayed that specifically for us, and I felt God's presence and his Spirit as he enveloped me and calmed all those fears, nerves, and anxieties.
So, once again, I am reminded of all I have and I am thankful for!

For Debra and Mitch and their warm, open hospitality as they let us crash all over their house and eat their food and watch their tv.  New friends that I anticipate being good, lasting friends as the years pass.

For the Sending Center staff and all those people in the World Harvest family that let us word vomit fears and frustrations, praises and anticipations all over them, and then pray for us.

For the chance to do things like visit the Lego store (though it was a slightly smaller version that we pictured) and Valley Forge with the kids.  The weather was GORGEOUS - almost 70 in the middle of November!  And we took pictures, rolled down hills, ran through the fields, and marveled as we touched walls that George Washington touched.  (RJ was particularly fascinated by this!)  A train even passed by us just a few feet away as we stood there - an extra perk to the day since my boys love them!

For the troops then and now - where freedom for the USA started and where we are today because of brave men and women.

For seeing family that we do not see often enough.  I mentioned before that when we were first married we lived in the Philly area.  I love the area and I love the family that lives there.  Seeing Uncle Fred and Aunt Linda, Nathaniel, Megan and Robin and the kids, Beth, Nicole, and is always a blessing to be around them.  Having the chance to eat tacos and drink tea (yes, it was a strange and wonderful combo) and tell them more about the work we will be doing in South Sudan made it even more fun, as we saw their excitement for us grow!

For holding the newest members of the Boda family.  Yes - that is members - they are beautiful, healthy twin boys!

For visiting and speaking at a church that we attended (cough, cough -slackers!) when we were first married.  Seeing a few familiar faces and so many more new faces.  Many people signed up for our monthly email and took donation forms.  We are trusting God in that.

For hanging out with my sister and her family.  Being welcomed into their home with the smell of yummy pork roast and the warmth of a coal stove.  Late night talks and tears and laughter.

For seeing old friends that we have not had a chance to visit with in many years!  Sharing our mission with them and eating together.  (The eating together thing seems to be a theme!)

For safe travels in our old car.  For the fact that it didn't take too many times of slamming the trunk to get it to stay closed and we didn't have to resort to a bungee cord (or duct tape!)   ;)

For coming home to hear that one of the churches we recently visited us is not only taking us on monthly, but also wants to send care packages quarterly.  Investing in us financially and emotionally - there's a lump in my throat as I think about it.

For a few days of playing catch up in school and having good things happen.  This school year has proven to be a really good one so far, with the frustrations being few.

For the anticipation of seeing college friends tonight and their kiddos!

Speaking of which...I have to clean.  I guess I can be thankful for a warm, big, dry, safe, welcoming house to clean.


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