Yesterday I came to a surprising realization. In one month's time, I would be boarding a plane to Germany! And today? One month from today, I'll be arriving to my destination!
So, why am I going to Germany, and how did I get the opportunity to go? A little over a year ago, while I was still living in London, a friend of mine forwarded me an email from a family that shared their desire to host an American nanny for a couple of months. My friend wrote to me, "...since you are quite the world traveler. Any interest in living in Germany for a couple months this fall?"
Before I responded, I prayed about it and talked to my parents about the possibility. While I am an adult who can make my own decisions, it is still very important to me to have my parent's "okay" in doing something like this - and I am blessed to be able to go to them for input and advice. They gave me their "okay" and told me, "If we were your age and the opportunity came up - we would probably do it too."
After that, I emailed with the family and we traded questions and answers that we had for one another. Shortly after, they told me that I was welcome to join their family and I told them that I was interested in coming. It was just a matter of finding a date and time period that worked for all of us. A little over a year later of receiving the first email, I have my ticket and departure date. I'll be leaving June 9th, and will be staying until December 18th.
While I am going as a nanny, a bigger part of what I'll be doing is teaching the children English. In fact, I've already sent some books on ahead to the family. (Thank you, once again, to those of you who gave books for me to take!! You rock!) The children are two little boys, one being almost 3-years-old, and the brother is younger. Their mom teaches English to other children in Germany, so she has already been teaching them English too. However, she also wants someone that she can practice her English with as well.
Most of my traveling has been with a mission organization and "official" mission trips. This going to be a different experience in comparison to what I have done in the past. I've never lived in a country where the native language is completely foreign to my own. I've never lived with another family - only with flat-mates and college roommates.
While this isn't an "official" mission trip with a specific organization that requires fundraising, I still believe that God has opened this door for me to go....and no matter where I go, no matter where any Christian goes, we are all suppose to be "missionaries" - no matter our surroundings....Whether we are surrounded in our native cultures or one of which we find to be unfamiliar; if we're at our workplace, on a bus, or on a plane...It is our job to show others through our actions and words that there is a God who cares and loves the people we meet...or even the people we may not officially meet, but see us in a bookstore or doctor's office.
I believe - and know - that God has a purpose for this upcoming adventure, although I don't really know what it is. Maybe I can make friends with someone there who needs to know of God's love, or what it is to have a true friend who cares about them. Maybe I'm suppose to share of past mission trip experiences with people who might have a passion to do something different for God...and maybe they can catch the flame of my passion to reach those locally and abroad. Maybe I'm suppose to impact someone who will go out an make a difference in their neighborhood, or a difference that can impact the world.
Again - I don't know why I'm meant to go to Germany. (In fact, I never know why I'm suppose to go anywhere that I've ever gone.) What I do know - the doors have opened and I've seen God in every step of the journey in preparing to go.
I hope that you'll travel with me me during this journey, as I have every intention to write blog updates while I am there.
If you would like to pray for me - that would be greatly appreciated!! Here are some current prayer requests for the upcoming adventure:
- Please pray for my family, friends, and I as we start saying our goodbye and "see you later". Some of these farewells will be easier than others, but this is always the hardest part for me.
- Pray for good health and safety! Pray for my health and safety, but also my family's as well.
- Language! I don't speak Germany...At all. I've been listening to "German for Dummies" (provided by my dad) to get use to the sound of the language. Please pray my brain can pick up the language easily and quickly.
- Another request about language...I've been taking American Sign Language courses during the last two semesters. When I return to the USA and to college, I plan to continue learning the language. While I plan to take my text book, watch ASL videos, and Skype with classmates, my big concern is that I might lose what I've already learnt because I won't be in any ASL settings, such as a class. Please pray I can retain what I have learned during the last year and can jump back in with ease when I return. This is very important to me, as I am planning to do a double major with journalism and ASL.
- Pray for good relationships to be built between the family I'll be living with. We've emailed, Skyped, and have many mutual friends, but have never met in person. The family has already accepted me as a family member and friend, and for this I am grateful!
- While I am there I would also like to make other friends that I can connect with. I'd really like to make the most of my experience, and I feel as though friendships are a big part of this!
- Last but not least - Pray for my relationship with my little cousin, Rayna. She'll be turning 3-years-old in September. When I was in London, we were able to maintain our good relationship via Skype. Our close relationship is something I also don't want to lose. Please pray that we can keep as much closeness that we already have - even thousands of miles away from one another.
Thank you for your prayers, support, and for reading my blog in the past, present, and future! I hope you continue to read my blog and travel with me through my writing and photos.
The Travelin' Chick,