Meet the Author's Author

Meet the Author's Author
Live for Jesus! That's what matters! That you see the light in me and come along! :)

Friday, April 12, 2013

Miracles Exist ~ America 2013

For the third time, this year, God willing, I hope to set foot on American soil. A place where my kinsmen emigrated, my ancestors fought, and my friends live.

Each time has been a miracle - the kindness shown me by friends who both gave and anonymously sent money and my boss Lisa who invented jobs to pay me so I could go in 2011, and by American friends who took me in and also paid for me as I went across the States.

The gracious miracle when my wages were higher than expected last year, 2012, figuring just enough money to go to both Ireland and America and cover our rent while I was gone.

Now I'd like to share with you the miracle of 2013. :)

God. Is. Amazing.

And He provides. Like, when you don't expect Him to. This year's trip to OYAN was a lot weirder than expected...

My colleague Jess Phelps (we are starting to interact a lot outside of work - she and Stephen are my two best friends at work) and I started kidding around about me taking her with me to America, at the time of the heavy snow fall back in January. Then she started looking at tickets. Then it "snowballed" (forgive the bad pun!) from there.

Towards the end of last year, I increased the rent I was paying towards the housekeep til in effect I am now paying the rent and a bit extra every month. I knew that by all earthly means, there was no way I was going to be going to Kansas this year.

Except Mom promised to pay my flight over (because of the extra money, even though I told her to leave it) if the house was sold by then.

Jess knew my problem, and offered to pay both flights on her credit card, with my paying her back £50 a month or as much as I could afford until I cleared my flight debt.

I don't like going into debt, especially already being still in debt, but there's stuff in our friendship that makes me think God for sure is in it, and the doors I've seen God open in our friendship already, the conviction I still have that God wants me at the Workshop this year, and this being the only means of my getting to Kansas made me believe this was the door God had opened.

Oh, then it came to booking the flights.

We booked with the same agent I used last year - one Just down the road from work. Cheap flights, good service.
First we went to look.
Then the price went up by the March paydate. Hehe...£638.

Jess couldn't get the bank to extend her credit. Mom had convinced me to get a credit card last year, and my sister advised me it was wiser to book on mine. With Jess so excited and planning, I uncomfortably went against my dislike of credit cards and decided to book on it.

But oh no, that wasn't the end.

Jess booked her flight, and I asked permission to book mine over the phone as I had forgotten to bring my credit card into work that morning. The last place I remembered it was on my dressing table. Took the fastest bus home, hopped off at the Bell Inn, walked as rapidly as possible and caught the 45 on the last lap of the Journey, getting home five minutes before they were due to shut, and it wasn't there. They hung on for ten minutes for me.

I lost my credit card. In my bedroom.

I spent one night bar two hours looking for it. Then two hours of the next night. They had to let the flights go then.

I had all the details on different statements - bar the expiry date. And I failed one security question so the bank wouldn't let me through to see if I could get it from them. I went to the travel agent's and attempted to book and guess the expiry date but it failed. Then I tried extending my overdraft. Again, fail.

Finally I cancelled the card and ordered a new one. (Which since its arrival, has been through a trip in the washing machine...yes, I'm terrible...)
The flight Jess had booked was £900+ by the time the new card reached me.

At that time, my friend John Rust was asking me to visit and I said maybe October, so we planned the following flight from Birmingham Airport to Dulles Airport, he paid my flight to Kansas City and then I booked my return flight from Kansas. Overall, on my side, it was about £718.

I'll be staying with Brendan Hanley and his (scary :P) grandparents, which I'm pretty excited about.

Jess and I will meet up in KCI, somehow, and Rob is coming to pick us up, which is kinda tradition for me now. Him meeting me in Kansas. :D

First week will be spent roaming around, the second is the OYAN workshop, and we've booked both dorms and food :P. I normally hang around in Kansas after the workshop but this year I'll be flying home on the Saturday as my family would like me home for our 21st and I don't want to be too Jet-lagged.

God seems to currently be providing to cover the cost in a marvellous way - I say seems to because I'm still struggling to believe it's happening.

I was in a car accident back in Feb with my sister and baby niece, Sam and I sustaining slight injuries to our neck/shoulders. The solicitor reckons compensation high enough that it would both clear my bill and leave Mom in the clear for when I go away and financially stabilise me. I still can barely believe it...but if it is, it really really shows that a) God has provided every time the last three years for me to go and b) that He always meets our needs!!

God is so good!!

My flights are as follows:

June 7th:
Birmingham Airport, 0920 to Charles De Gaulle, Paris at 1140.
Charles De Gaulle at 1630 to Washington, Dulles at 1845.

June 8th:
Washington, Dulles 11:45 to Minneapolis, St Paul at 1:31
Minneapolis St Paul, 3:05 to Kansas City at 4:35.

June 22cd-23rd:
Kansas City, 1650 to Atlanta at 19:54
Atlanta, 2045 to Charles De Gaulle at 11:10am
Charles de Gaulle 1250 to Birmingham Airport, 1310.

I'm so excited. So is Jess. So are my friends.

My heart is sad because many of my old and dearest friends will not be there this year. But there are others who are coming and want to say hello...and life moves on...and people are...friendships fade and new ones are built. And real friendships always last.

God is amazing. Can't wait for this adventure to begin!

Love in Christ,
~Mademoiselle Siân