Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry Christmas... yesterday!


Hope you all had a very merry Christmas! What a special day we had.. you can find the whole story with pictures - yes, pictures - at our family blog - thank God for libraries! :) Hope you have a blessed rest of the year... and remember to take some extra time to thank the Lord for all He has done in your life this past year! I know I have lots to thank Him for! Blessings to you all!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Is It Only Me??

I love every part of the Christmas season! I love all the festivities. I love all the traditions. I love the excitment and anticipation.

Does anyone else love these things too? Am I the only one who relishes the truly last minute shopping? Loves everytime the forcast calls for snow? Gets so excited at planning the special gifts for family and friends?

I never understand why people want to avoid the holiday crowds... there seems like such a festive spirit in the air. I love being able to wish the cashiers and anyone else "Merry Christmas!!" Have you ever felt that wrapping gifts just doesn't seem right without Christmas music playing in the background?! And isn't it just the greatest thing to walk through the isles of your favorite stores and hear your favorite Christmas songs!?! It's even better that while searching for the perfect gift and you can belt out "Rockin' around the Christmas tree, have a happy holiday"!!! I also love hearing the precious words announcing the birth of our Saviour rolling across the speakers at Wal-Mart! What a great time of year... my only regret is that it's almost over. But hooray!!! It's coming again next year!

:: Enjoy these last few hours of the almost-holiday.
:: Tell everyone you can, "Merry Christmas!"
:: Hug a child.
:: Eat some chocolate.
:: Sniff a Christmas candle.
:: Plan something special for Christmas dinner.
:: And take as many moments as you can to thank Jesus for beinging the bestest gift of all!

Happy Eve-of-Christmas-Eve!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Oh the agony!

::Do you know::

- the desire to tell the delightful events that are happening around our house these past couple weeks??
- the terrible pains that come from having hundreds of pictures to post as visuals with those stories (well, okay, maybe not hundreds, but surely dozens!!)
- the sorrow that comes from the knowledge of what ya'll are missing out on!!
- even more the need-to-bite-the-bullet-pain that comes from not being able to share?!?!

::But don't be discouraged, because I have decided to pull myself out of the slump I have been in because of the above mentioned facts. The primary reasons being as follows:

1) Due to the kind actions of my bosses in allowing me borrow their flash drive to transport pictures and use their very speedy high-speed computer, I will be able to post pictures someday soon. (Soon being after Christmas and New Years.) [Thanks guys, I will always look to you as my benefactor/benefactoress!! Hugs!) BTW, ya'll should stop by and see their most amazingly, beautiful photography work! It's out of this world... www.gehmanphotography.blogspot.com

2) And also because I have come to the decision that words only beats silence any day!

Okay, I lastly want to thank you for your faithful reading... I think anyone who still stops by this blog deserves the 'best-blog-watchers-even-when-there-is-nothing' award!

Cheers!!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Great News!!!

I am happy to announce that my family has started a blog!!!
Tiff and I have been waiting for this day for a long time. There's nothing very exciting yet, but stop by and stop often! It's found at www.chmelarfamily.blogspot.com
~ ~ ~
PS. I was gonna post more pictures today, but for some reason, my picture link is missing. If anyone knows how to get it back, I would be forever greatful! So until then, ta-ta!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Do you know...


...that Christmas is coming right around the corner???

::Don't forget to enjoy the ride::

It's truly a wonderful life!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Hope

After our trip to the village that Monday morning, volunteers and staff, both chinese and american, gathered in the courtyard to wait for the children. The excitment in the air matched the intesity of the humidity that hugged us all close.

Suddenly the message came down the treelined lane, they were coming. Five bikers rode in ahead of the vans, like they were little celebrities. And to us, they were.
As all the kids piled out of the van, we called out "Ni hao"! (hello)

The chinese staff members were calling out the children's names in chinese and pairing them up with their new 'family'.
When I first met Hope, she was very shy. I gathered her and the rest of our family and we headed to the cafeteria to eat our first meal together.
As we talked and walked, I found out that Hope was fifteen years old. When I met her on that hot summer afternoon, she was dressed in a black and white polka-dot shirt and a little ruffled black skirt. She was very shy but had a very sweet smile that she would readily share.
It took Hope a while to warm up to the activities we did that week. She would sit on the edge of the swimming pool and splash around. She made beautiful bead bracelets during craft time. Much of the time though, she was quiet and was slow to enter into everything we did.
The night that we did the 'Happiness Graphes', Hope opened up and shared that her parents both died when she was three years old and that she had lived with her grandpa for a while, but then was sent to the orphanage. The year she lost her parents was one of the sadest in her live.
Suddenly it made sense why she seemed more withdrawn and quiet. She had already experienced so much pain and hurt.
That pain that I felt that night after hearing her story through Sophie, was something I had never experienced before. How can you even attempt to make that better??? How can you scratch the surface??? I cried so much that night and begged God, "WHY??? What good is this week here."
The answer to that question was when Hope told me that her fifteenth year was one of the happiest in her life.
Why?
Because she was able to come to camp. That is the reason I went to China. That is the reason it makes it all worthwhile. That is the reason I want to go back.
Because whether or not we can see the difference it makes, it changes their lives forever.
It changed Hope's.
It changed mine.
And you know what??? It could change yours.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

do you know...

...that chocolate chips really aren't for baking?? Their real, but secret mission is to satisfy late night chocolate cravings!!
Good thing for me!

PS. No. This has nothing to do with China but more of that is coming soon!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Sophie


It was Monday morning, July 16th, when our thrown-together-family met at the International Liami School in Beijing. Two kids, a college student and an American teenager-plus-one-year.
My translator/student, Sophie, was a very soft-spoken girl with a shy, cute smile. We got to know each other better before the children came with some team building activities.


*an old building in the village*
Monday morning we went to the small village about a ten minute walk from the school. Our entire team was given 40 RMB to spend (chinese money: about 7 RMB are equivalent to 1 US dollar.). Every team member had to buy one item from the village and we HAD to spend the entire 40 RMB, not a penny more or less. The object was to learn to work together as a team, preparing us for the week ahead with the children. It was neat to see the chinese and americans working together.
Our team members bought a variety of things from a roll of tape to a dirty towel bought right off someone's clothesline to a manequin I bought off the display of a very meager clothes shop.
I felt like a walked into a completely different world within China. It was so poor and dirty. An image that sticks in my mind is a little baby sitting on a small mat next to his dad who was selling herbs and veggies. The little boy was sitting there chewing on a shoe.
The needs are so huge they are overwhelming. What can someone like me do???
Anything???
Only can my meager efforts make an impact when they are placed at Jesus' feet!

Monday, October 15, 2007

The Time Has Come...

I know, I know... before I even start: I'm sorry.

I promised everyone I would be posting pictures and recounting the story of my China trip.

Let's see... I think that was suppose to be when I got home. But I could say I didn't specify exactly when. *smile*

I am here, albeit nearly three months later. But I am here none the less.

The kids need their story told. So here it goes...

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Still Here!

Hey guys!
Sorry I have not posted yet - I am having technical difficulties with posting pictures. It will be coming soon. Sorry!
Oh!!! Go to www.youtube.com and search for 'Bring Me Hope Diary' and if you play the movie clips 1.1-1.5, you will see what I did the week I was in China! That will tie you over til I get this other thing figured out!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Home!

Hello to all my praying family and friends!
I did arrive home on Tuesday... though, my body is just now adjusting to Central Standard Time! I was pretty much out cold Wednesday. It is so good to see my family's dear faces and to eat American food!
My time in China is something very hard to descibe, but in the next several days I will try and give you a small picture of these ten days that have changed my life forever!
Stayed tuned....

Friday, July 20, 2007

China Update #2

Hey ya'll!!!
Just wanted to let you know that everything is going well... the kids left
today and it was soooo sad. We had an incredible week. I never thought
it would be this hard. Sorry, but I have fallen in love. (With China
that is.) :) I am loving everything from sleeping in a mosquito net,
bathing in repelent everyday, eating with chopsticks, the team, and
sweating like a hog all the time! (Wait, I don't love sweating. You just
get used to it, I mean.) I have never ever sweat this much.
This afternoon some of us took a cab and went to this little westernized
shopping place. We went to Starbucks and it was amazing how much it
reminds me of home. Then some of us went to this store called JennyLou's.
It's just like a regular grocery store. I stocked up on my comfort food
- - I know, I should be coming back skinny cuz we walked probably about
four or five miles a day, but my comfort food kinda makes up the
difference. It was really great after our very emotional afternoon. I
knew it would hurt when they left, but I didn't know it would be like
this. I don't think you can prepare for it anyway.
I have totally lost track of the days here, though I adjusted to the time
and everything very quickly. I miss you all... can't wait to see you
again. I miss America, though I totally am in love with China.
Guess I should go. Someone else needs to use the computer. Lovey, lovey love ya!!!
Nic

Saturday, July 14, 2007

China Update #1

Hey everyone, just wanted to let you know that I made it to China by fouro'clock Saturday afternoon! The flights went well... though we had adelay in Chicago 'cuz the air was not working! You better believe we werehappy they got it fixed within a half hour and even more happy the air wasworking! I was more than happy to get back on the ground after that 13hour flight... I'm getting ready to eat supper now, so ta-ta for now!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

To Be Specific

Just wanted to let you all know some specific ways you all can pray for me on this trip.

.::Pray for the three kids I will be spending the week with. Ask that we will bond quickly and that I will be able to really connect with their hearts so I can have the greatest ministry potential.
.::Pray for the Chinese student that will help me with Chinese communications during the week. I will be asking him/her pointed questions throughout the week, with hopes of being able to talk about Christianity at the end of the week. Pray that his/her heart will be open and that I would have wisdom to know what questions to ask.
.::Pray for my heart, that God would prepare me for all that I will encounter this week. Pray that I would have a servant's heart. Pray against any spirit of contention or jealousy.
.::Pray for the staff that God would bless the labors of their hands and encourage their hearts.
.::Lastly, but not least, please pray for the health, safety and sanity of the entire team! (smile)

Thanks again!

The Story - Part Three

As the New Year rolled in, I started a new job. I was babysitting two kids in Iowa City, Arnav and Anika. I also had another part time job helping a home school mom from our group. Life was very busy and over the months, I forgot about China. What was the point of trying to go when I had these work commitments?? Life would go on and I decided to just enjoy it!
* * *
Then out of the clear blue sky, I came home from work on April 31 and saw that I had gotten an invitation the join the night walk with Bring Me Hope. Several kids in China were going to be walking to raise awareness of the camp and here in the US, supporters could walk simultaneously with them at night. It was all to raise money for the kids to go to camp through Bring Me Hope

Our night walk in Iowa

We all got excited and wanted to walk on that Saturday night. Ironically, the sign-up date for the walk was the day that we got the letter, but it didn’t really matter. The seeds were planted that got me thinking, could I still go to China??

* * *

Now, exactly 73 days later, I am ready to leave on that trip. I am amazed again and again how when something is God’s will and it’s His time, everything falls so quickly into place! Within 48 hours of asking my parents if there was any possible chance that I might be able to go to China, I was planning to leave. God just caused everything happen! Time off work, the finances to pay for the trip, shots, my passport (right before the major passport rush! Praise God!) prayer and financial support, and so much more.
I was floating on cloud nine for many weeks after I started planning the trip! I could not be happier! It’s amazing having God’s peace and grace in life. It makes it so much more enjoyable.

* * *

I’m on the countdown now. Exactly 24 hours ‘til my plane leaves from Cedar Rapids! I have my mile long to-do list before then, but enjoying it all! Stay tuned for a few more updates before then and all the juicy-stuff will be coming soon!
Until then...

Sunday, July 8, 2007


Der nukl
i wil mis you
luv you
Aubrey

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Happy Freedom Day!

What blessings we all experience living in the Great Land of the Free. The Home of the Brave. Our family's day started with The National Anthem being pounded out on the piano by Gracie, before I had even opened my eyes!
I was thinking today of freedom. (Go figure!) I am very grateful the typical freedoms thought of most on this day. Freedom of religion. Freedom of speech. Freedom to assemble ourselves together. Freedom to be who we are.
I also thought of the freedoms that Jesus gives us. Freedom from sin. Freedom from an eternity without Him. Freedom from fear and condemnation. Freedom from a life of sadness. We have been given the gift of love and acceptence!
I thought about my trip... something I've been doing a lot more of lately! And I was thinking of the the kids. The kind of life they are living right now, is one bondage to the idea that they are not wanted. That they don't matter. The ever haunting thought, Does anyone love me???
I hope and pray that I can give them a release from these chains. I want to them to have freedom in their little lives, knowing that they are loved. That they do matter!
* * *
Thank you Jesus, for your love that lets us live a life
full of freedom and blessings when we follow you! I love you!

Sunday, July 1, 2007

The Best of Bargains!


I love shopping! Malls, secondhand stores, grocery stores! Just about anywhere - well, I have my few places I prefer to stay out of... like Menards.

Yesterday, Mom, Tiffany, Grace, Beth, and I went shopping in Iowa City. I got some of the last things on my 'Packing List' for China:
- Tennis Shoes
- The perfect, pink backpack!!! (At a perfect, God-blessed price!)
- Hairpins/bands
- Snacks!
- Cereal
This morning I started packing some of my goods into my suitcase! Whoo-hoo! Things are falling into place! I am getting very excited, but it seems like these last twelve days are going to craaaawl by.
Oh well, I've got lots to keep me busy til then, working, a wedding to play violin for, the Fourth of July, and lots more fun moments with my family before I leave!

One more thing. You also should know about this really, really cute lime-green, high-heel sandals I bought at Target for a really, really good deal! They are so cute, and comfortable might I add - for being high-heels that is! I probably won't be taking them to China, since the Chinese are built closer to the ground. They might look at a 5'9" woman wearing over 2" heels as rather strange. But they were a such great bargain! Only $4.50, compared to the original price of almost $18! (Now that is sooo Proverbs 31!) :)


PS. I can't wait to experience open-air market shopping in Beijing! Now that will be a shopping experience of a lifetime!

The Story - Part Two


For several years before I graduated, Dad and I talked about how, when I was done with school, we would take a mission trip together. There was an opportunity to go to Kenya to visit Elizabeth, the little girl I sponsor, right after I graduated. It was very expensive and the doors never opened.

Then in the fall of 2007, through my sister's Internet searches for international adoption sites, we found Bring Me Hope. It was all so random you might believe it was only chance... that is unless you believe in my God, who can orchestrate anything! Even Internet searches! They were about to begin a baby bottle campaign to raise money for this summer camp thing they were doing the following summer in China. We filled lots of bottles, along with our friends. During that time, I was invited to help out with the camp in China. We had many discussions concerning the possibility. Mom and Dad prayed. I prayed - a lot! I wanted to go sooo bad, but I also wanted God's will.

One night in particular, I remember journaling this:

"...So, God, I lay everything on the altar once again! It's all yours. The desires are still there, the hope. But I choose to rest in you, be faithful where you have me, and allow you to write the story of my future. I just had to write this tonight - I am so blessed to be in a place of surrender! The joy and peace are so sweet. I know God has a special plan for me and I would hate to mess it up!"

The doors never opened that year. It obviously wasn't the right thing right then. During that time, God taught me a lot about dying to the dreams I had for my life. Letting Him have it all, knowing that He can do a better job with my life than I could!
Surrender is never easy. Neither is sacrifice. But it is the best. It is only out of death, that Jesus can teach us how to truly live!

After that night, I just had to hunker down and do what He had placed in front of me each following day. The ministry He had given me at that time was to the kids in my family, at church, and whoever came across my path. Not the most exciting, but in God's eyes, it's all the same!

So 2006 was another time of my life where God taught me about the joys of surrender. Like I journaled that cold night in January:

"...Will-obedience is the place to live, not just according to how I feel. I am all, ALL His! For His glory alone!"

* * *
"Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it:
except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain."
Psalm 127:1

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Impossible + God = Possible!!!



"For with God, nothing is impossible. And Mary said,
Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word."
Luke 1:37, 38
* * *
God has been teaching me a lot in the days leading up to my trip! He is teaching me that I have to depend completely on Him for everything... okay, He's been trying to teach my this lesson for some time, but I'm not always the fastest learner! (That's what makes me grateful for a very patient Heavenly Father!) He is teaching me that integrity calls for me to stand alone, even when it hurts. He is teaching me in my weakness, that true strength is displayed! And He is teaching me that He is able to provide for my every need!

The fundraiser we had was a huge success and I was able to raise almost half of the money I had borrowed to pay for the camp and my ticket. (I had to get a loan to pay for both.) A few other gifts of support have trickled in since then.

Then, I felt impressed a couple days ago, to start praying that God would take care of the rest of that loan before I leave for China.

The next day, I got an email from my friend Christy, from Bring Me Hope. It read like this:

* * *
Nicole ... Great News!!! You have been awarded a $150 scholarship from BMH.
This money can be used towards your camp fees... Christy
* * *
I almost burst into tears! I didn't even know they had a scholarship program! (And don't ask me why I was chosen.) Then today, I got a money order in the mail... one hundred dollars. I was also given an anonymous gift of five dollars. Every penny counts and is a blessing! This takes the balance on my loan down to a mere $464!!! Praise to God!!!
What seemed like an nearly impossible task, is suddenly a reality! Please pray with me that in these last fifteen days before I leave, that God can lay it on people's hearts to give as lead, so the rest of this balance can be taken care of. I know He can do it and I can't wait to see how it happens. Isn't it fun how God is full of surprises!?
Thanks again for each of your prayers and financial help! It means so much! Stay tune for rest of the story!
* * *
"For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle
upon a thousand hills."
Psalms 50:10

Monday, June 25, 2007

FYI

I guess I've never actually posted when exactly I leave and return. So for all you wondering folks, here's the low-down:

Departure:
July 13; 9:31 am - Fly out of Cedar Rapids
July 13; 10:33 am - Arrive in Chicago (special prayer at this time; I hear it's a big airport!)
July 13; 12:40 pm - Fly out of Chicago on a Boeing 747 for Bejing!

...fly for hours and hours and hours - thirteen to be exact!

July 14; 3:00 pm (About 2:00 am Central time) - Arrive in Bejing!!! (special prayer at this time too, since I will have already been awake for about twenty hours and it will only be afternoon!)

...have the best ten days in my life...then say goodbye to my new, close friends!

Return:
July 24; 4:20 pm (About 3:20 am Central time) - Fly out of Bejing
July 24; 4:13 pm - Arrive in Chicago (Wow! I actually will gain three minutes!)
July 24; 6:45 pm - Fly out of Chicago
July 24; 7:48 pm - East or west, home is best!!!

Continued thanks to everyone for their prayers. It will be great to know I have to many dear friends lifting me before the Father!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

The Story - Part One

Where does my China story start???


...the day I signed the camp application with Bring Me Hope?

...the day we first heard of that ministry?

...the day I responded to God's call on my life and asked Him into my heart at our kitchen table before lunch?

...the day I was born?

...the day my parents were married?

...the day God first thought to make me apart of His world?


Or... was it when He first thought to create this universe???


I guess I will never really know, because none of us can really understand the deep workings of God's mind. But I like to imagine that it has been on His mind since the day He thought of me. No, not just imagine, but know!


Just like I don't know when the story first started, neither do I know when I really knew I wanted to be a missionary. I know there have been seeds planted along the way; riveting stories of brave women like Mary Slessor, Amy Carmichael, and Gladys Alyward; a message preached by our friends who spent four years in Guatemala, on what it takes to be a missionary; those words my mom spoke to me after a frugal move in the kitchen when I was only thirteen - "Wouldn't Nicole make a great missionary?!"; monthly reports from friends who had left our church to be missionaries to Ghana, Africa; sponsoring a little Kenyan girl and learning more over the years how needy so many people are across the world.


Each event was like a log thrown on a fire and it has grown from little sparks to a burning fire in my heart from when I was just a young teenager, that I wanted to be a missionary. I never really cared where I would go... so long as there were children there. They were what tugged at my heart the hardest, deepest and longest. I remember one time I thought I wanted to go to Vietnam. Then there was Africa. Central or South America would have been fine too. But never China. That was the country my Dad had a burden for. Not mine.


Funny how God has His ways of changing our minds!



"How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed?
and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard?
and how shall they hear without a preacher?"
Romans 10:14

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Around the World This Summer

Kip

My cousin, Kip, was suppose to be heading to Ukraine in about one week to travel around to orphanages and do ministry work... that is until his passport was stolen out of his car a little over a week ago. With his ticket purchased and all the plans in order, it's devistating to say the least!
Please pray that whoever committed the act would be convicted and return the manditory document before his plane leaves the country! Most of all, pray that God's will would be brought about - Ukraine or not!


Allison and Yours Truly

Since I am asking for prayer, I'll add two other very dear girls - adopted cousins! - to the list who are headed to Africa this summer! Allison and Kelly will be in Kenya doing mission work in a clinic and orphanage - respectively. They are very excited and I'm sure would appreciate your prayers!

Kelly

What a blessing to see young people who don't just say they want to serve God, but walk it out in daily life! Love ya guys!

* * *

"Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness
and all these things shall be added unto you!"
Matthew 6:33

Monday, June 18, 2007

Standing Together


Saturday evening - it was typical Iowa, 'almost-summer' weather. We gathered at our favorite little church in the 'blink-n-miss' town of Joetown. Seated in the hard, wooden benches were about fifty of our family's close friends who came out to show their support for my adventure to China.

Our family started out by singing a very fitting song for the setting:
"I recall a slender steeple, a church house filled with people
And voices lifted up in happy song!
With music so exciting, so warm and so inviting
I had to enter in and sing along!"

After we sang several more songs, our friends from HeartStrings played Amazing Grace and a very unsure version of Orange Blossom Special. (We failed to practice with our pianist before the performance! Not such a good idea.)

About midway through the program, it was fun to welcome the Ockenfels family to the small stage to share three very upbeat, bluegrass songs. The crowd really enjoyed their version of Cripple Creek, where they mixed in several simple, but very funny jokes!
Aaron: Alexander -
Alexander: What -
Aaron: Why were the little strawberries sad?
Alexander: I don't know, why were the little strawberries sad?
Aaron: Because their parents were in a jam!

During the time of the freewill offering, I had the privilege of showing a special DVD showcasing the ministry of Bring Me Hope and also what the summer camps entail. (Visit the site to see the same DVD!)

Tiffany and I closed by singing the song Handmade by God. It really summerized the reason I am going to China; to show those kids that they were made for a purpose, that they are special, and that I am so glad to be there spending time with them!


It was a special night of connecting with dear friends and seeing how they are standing with me this summer - both financially and in prayer! I know I am not going over to China alone! Thank you all again! You are all so special!
* * *
Of course no Chmelar event is complete without a game of football!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

He IS My Supply!

The benefit concert was a smash-up success! The music was a very uplifting. Another quarter of my trip expenses were raised (That means I'm halfway there!) The prayers from precious saints were encouraging. And the cookies and fellowship was sweet. Praise God - it's all because of Him!
God's finger has been all over this trip thus far. It amazes me over and over again how the doors are thrown wide and you better believe I am walkin' through!
A more detailed report and pictures will follow soon!

"The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way."
Psalms 37:23

Friday, June 15, 2007

Preparing to Perform


I have learned a lot the last ten weeks about international travel.

First, you need this thing called a passport. I guess it's what gets you in and out of the country... or something like that. Oh, they also want to you to have a special picture taken for the passport. No family snapshots. Though I must say I look a lot better in those. In my passport picture, I look like a jailbird because of my shirt - black and tan horizontal stripes. (Not such a great idea!)

You need shots... if you want to lessen your risk of contracting a disease like Hepatitis.

Then there's the visa. The cost of room and food. Luggage - kinda important for all the Chinese loot I plan on bringing home. (Kinda ironic since most the stuff from Wal-Mart is made there anyway!) I needed more clothes since I can't plan on washing all ten days. Toilet paper - for the squatty-potties.

All this makes the sound of 'ching-ching' in my mind. I've learned it's not exactly cheap to head halfway across the word!

Thus tomorrow night, we are having a concert fundraiser to raise awareness of my trip and help people see what I'm gonna be doing and to ask people to pray... and, ahem, to ask people for money. (There's no nice way to say that.)

On the serious side, I most of all covet people's prayers. I can always work more hours, get other jobs, and stop buying chocolate to pay for my trip. But no amount of money can buy the Holy Spirit going with me over to China. That's really the most valuable thing!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

China Bound!


I am so excited that in a short 30 days, I'll get on a plane in Cedar Rapids and head to China! So excited there have been times I literally can't think straight!

I almost have all my 'legal stuff' done:

- Passport

- Hepatitis B Shot

- Airline Ticket

Now I just need my visa... I guess that is kinda important when it comes to getting into the country!

Over the next couple weeks, I will share the beginnings to this story, The Journey of Hope.
Until then... Goodnight!