On the Road Again Soon: Hallelujah!

With our tax refund, we have paid for our trip, which will begin in the middle of May. I love it when the whole trip is paid for before we leave. I don’t have to worry while traveling about missing paying the bills on the first of the month.

This time last year, my life was about to be upended twice. In May, I spent a week in the hospital with a small bowel obstruction that was so awful that my faith was tested. But also, it was a time to reflect on what I believed about God’s goodness. I had quite a large pity party in the hospital, wondering why I couldn’t seem to find physical health when I thought of myself as such a grand person. I still had sciatica that left me gasping in pain as it traveled down my right side and into my foot like hot molten lava poured down my leg.

But, as I prayed not to have surgery that would only exacerbate the problem with my colon, I visualized traveling one day again. I saw myself walking down the jetway, entering the plane, and passing the first-class passengers (reality is good in dreams and visions!). My hopes soared, and I knew that if the vision became a reality, it wasn’t because of anything I had done but because of God’s amazing grace.

Then, lumbar back surgery in August left me with such nerve damage that it took nearly eight months of physical therapy and personal training to walk without aid. I took so many painkillers that some days, I just laid around the house wondering if I could walk well enough again to make a trip to Europe.

Over the last few weeks, I have increased hiking on the Silver Comet Trail to 90 minutes! I can retake the hills without a cane! I can use the machines at the gym, lifting the leg machines in the air at 20 to 65 lbs, something I couldn’t do in those first weeks. I can walk at 2.5 mph on the treadmill again, working myself to 3 mph by the time we leave for our trip to increase my stamina and endurance. Paris and Amsterdam are walking cities, as are a lot of Europe.

So, as we paid for all of the Airbnbs near the beaches, our flights to Europe and within it, and a car for the last part of the trip, I am encouraged that the vision will become a reality. What joy traveling brings to our spirits and peace to our souls. I am thankful for what a difference a year can make. Now when difficulties come, I say to myself, “Next year, at this time, this will have passed, and the world will be right side up again.” It helps me not focus so much on what is happening now and gives me hope for the future.

None of us know what tomorrow will bring or if tomorrow will come, but moments like today remind me of the truth of Psalm 30:5, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning!” I am encouraged to trust in the goodness and faithfulness of God, no matter how crazy the world becomes! Bon Voyage!

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