Now that the dust has settled from the holidays and the New Year’s resolutions have taken a back seat, perhaps it has crossed you mind in the past month, “Whateverhappened to the Bonds?”
Trying to move at Christmas time may have been a less than optimal decision but that’s what we were left with due to other circumstances. We moved what was left of our belongings (after selling and/or giving away most of them) into a 10 x 15 storage unit two days before Christmas and moved into a hotel room downtown. We had a most enjoyable Christmas Day with our family and a wonderful Christmas dinner with dear friends. The next morning we loaded up the car with six large suitcases, said tearful good-byes and drove off to Colorado Springs. We flew fromColorado out to California forNew Year’s with family. Then began our final preparations for moving to Africa in Colorado Springs at a training program called MTI (2 weeks of language acquisition techniques and 3 weeks of cross cultural issues). We’ve been here for nearly five weeks. Finishing up on Friday and then flying off to Africa Saturday morning.
The beauty and the wonder of the past month has been: 1) three wonderful weekends in the Rockies–skiing, snowshoeing and visiting old friends, each one with some snow fall, 2) the blue sky and warm sunshine nearly every day here, 3) interacting with a new community of people all with open hearts ready to serve the Lord and others in a wide variety of places around the world. We have been challenged by new ways of learning a language, debriefed on suspending judgement as we enter new cultures with different value systems and versed in the stages of cultural displacement. An unforeseen blessing we were also given was several dinner meetings with a retired couple who live here and do spiritual renewal and encouragement. Our times with them were very fortuitous in helping us to think through boundaries, expectations and goals even before we arrive and find there are many things put on us that we did not anticipate. Then on top of all this a young couple known to someone here is buying our car this week. In all these things, and more, we see God’s hand caring for us, encouraging us and going before us.
Our hearts are thankful and rejoicing, and yes we are anxious to get on the plane and finally go after so much preparation. Many “thank yous” to all of you who have sent us messages, prayers and encouragements through our days of packing, moving and training. We value your thoughts and friendships.