Note: I started writing this post LAST Friday night and never finished it. A week later, I have more to write about but am determined to get this done!
Glancing at the clock, I see that I have now been home exactly one week (almost to the hour) from my three-week mission trip to Armenia. So much has happened since our return that it seems like Armenia was weeks ago, and yet I can still almost smell the streets of Yerevan and feel the 35-40C heat blowing in my face as we quickly bump along the dusty, crowded streets.
Note: A week later, I definitely cannot feel the hot air anymore! It’s been downright cold in Montreal — We’re talking sweater and socks weather. But I love that, so no complaints!
The last several weeks gave me many opportunities to exercise faith, practice patience, extend compassion, receive grace and be humbled. There are things I appreciate about life in Armenia (everyone has the gift of hospitality) and things that make me miss Canada (life is more comfortable and stable here). I enjoyed meeting new people and seeing them light up whenever we shared the love of Jesus with them. At the same time, we witnessed a lot of pain and suffering that was difficult to process.
Okay, that’s as far as I got, so let me try to catch up now. . .
You can read all about my trip to Armenia on our mission trip blog (which I’m delighted to see people are still visiting!) so I won’t repeat the details here. When we returned, jet lag and fatigue (our journey home took about 24 hours) were not the only things to cope with:
- I got home to discover my phone line was down. That was Thursday night. My line got repaired on Monday morning. Miraculously, I had Internet access.
- The same night we got home, I blocked the toilet when the head of the toilet brush fell in and I thoughtlessly flushed so I would have clean water to fish it out of. Oops. I went to bed upset and feeling even more tired. Thankfully, my father was able to fix it the next day, but only after completely removing the toilet and then reinstalling it.
- The day after our return, I noticed a recent dental filling had fallen out. The same thing had happened to my Dad toward the end of our trip! A call to the dentist revealed he was on vacation. We finally got our teeth fixed yesterday, almost two weeks later.
- The day before I went to Armenia I received jury selection summons. Thankfully, it was only after we were back in town that I realized it was for the most high-profile and disturbing case currently going on in Canada. Suffice it to say, I am very grateful that I was among those exempted from jury duty. But you can imagine that the days leading up to my court appearance date (September 10) were quite stressful.
And then things started looking up!
- The same day I reported for jury selection, a FedEx truck pulled up to the house and dropped off four big boxes. My copies of Truth, Dare, Double Dare have arrived! In just another week and a half, my third devotional for tween girls should be showing up on store bookshelves. I’m almost giddy with excitement and can’t wait to start hearing feedback for this one. My publisher and I will be finalizing some promo and marketing details in the next little while.
- Christian Retailing listed my book in its October 2014 Buyer’s Guide for youth books!
- My new column in ChristianWeek, a Canadian newspaper, launched on September 1. My column is called “Faith that Follows” and my first piece is “Choosing What Is Better.”
- I got a very flattering compliment about the “silver” in my hair while picking up a salad at a nearby bakery. Hey, don’t laugh. I like to celebrate the little joys in life! 🙂
It’s hard to believe we’ve been home two weeks already. Life got back to routine faster than I expected, though it did take about a week to completely shake off the jet lag. Now it’s busy, busy, busy again! But it’s all good stuff. I’ve got several exciting writing projects going on, which I look forward to sharing about. In two weeks I’ll be participating in our annual women’s retreat (not as the speaker but as one of the organizers and emcees). Canadian Thanksgiving is less than a month away and then we start thinking about Christmas. Whew! Wasn’t it January 1 just a few days ago? 🙂
I’ve already written most of my next blog post so I promise there won’t be such a big gap between posts this time. Have a great weekend and see you soon!