(Jherlly and I on my last day in Peru at la playa)
Home and settled in to the routine rather quickly from the trip to Peru. The culture shock coming back home was definitely trying. To begin with the nice 70 degree difference assault was not friendly when the small plane we flew in from Houston did not connect to the terminal walk-way. We left Peru in 80 something degrees and came home to 4 inches of snow on the ground and teen numbers, good thing I changed from my Capri's and t-shirt to something a bit warmer. Our families were waiting for us at the terminal entrance with open arms. They were excited to hear our tales and adventures. Going home, the traffic was highly more sensible than from where we had just come, I only flinched once (which is better than the norm when Roy is driving.... lol). We got home around 4:30pm after 20 hours of traveling and exhausting was creeping in. I think I barely made it through dinner before I collapsed in the comfort of my own bed. It wasn't until the next morning that the silence was deafening. There is simply no noise here! I hadn't realized how noisy 12 million people were in the city of Lima. I probably should have taken the following day off of work to relax and assimilate back in to our culture, but I need to be mindful of my off days this year with so much going on (mission, moving, graduations, weddings, etc) I have to watch carefully, so I went back to work on Wednesday. It was very difficult, and a couple of times the tears flowed without warning at the nonsense of things that now seem so trivial. We helped Cindy get her truck packed and on her way to her parish in Tyler, TX. Saying "manana" rather than good-bye, as we know the world is getting smaller and smaller, never know when we will again meet. We are continuing our prayers for the portion of the team that stayed in Peru and were traveling these last few days to higher altitudes. I heard from the grapevine, that they were experiencing bad road conditions and altitude sickness, but the Lord carried them in with our prayers. Latest report is they are back safe and sound now and preparing to return to the states tomorrow. Blessings to Paul, Tripp, Brian and Michael for safe travel tomorrow. Looking forward to hearing about the Inca's. I will forever be thankful for the opportunity of this trip. The education gained and the mission experience that we shared will be so beneficial in future mission planning. I still have a paper to write and a power point presentation to complete to finish the requirements of the class, but I will get them done this weekend. I wonder about the friends we made and how they are doing. It seems so surreal, like a world away. The one thing that I will always keep with me from this conference was the testimony of Bishop Chapman when asked what one thing Christians can use as a tool for effective ministry and his answer was a three minute testimony. "Who I am, Who I Was, and How Christ Changed Me" is often the seed that is needed to get the attention of a nonbeliever. To engage and identify with people. It was a powerful yet simple concept.
(Luis is a young man with special needs at Shalom).
Almighty Father, whose dear Son, on the night before he suffered, did institute the Sacrament of his Body and Blood: Mercifully grant that we may thankfully receive the same in remembrance of him who in these holy mysteries giveth us a pledge of life eternal, the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord; ever, one God, world without end. Amen
Thank you for following the Allison family's "Faithful Journey" as we traveled from Florida to Nashotah, Wisconsin to follow Roy's call to seminary. Now we are fulling the call in our life of ministry in Naples, Florida and around the world.