Wow, what a summer already! I hope you have had a wonderful start to your summer. Before long, we will be turning the calendar once again and heading into July.
In some ways, this is a very abnormal post for RRM goes to Egypt….yet, as we head into the final week before we leave to serve in one of my absolute favorite places, I realize that this is something I needed to share.
Last week, my family (the Rich5) had the special privilege of going on a family vacation to the Cayman Islands. This trip was to celebrate Grace (our daughter) graduating high school, and it was made possible by the generosity of the Muhich family (LLYC days and RRM partners). While the trip was meant to be a family vacation, we soon realized it was so much more. When planning the trip, Grace said she only had two requirements…One, that it was at a beach somewhere; Two, that is was just us five. While the beach request was no surprise, the second request was actually surprising since we often do so much with cousins and/or grandparents. Yet, without realizing it at the time, this ended up being just what the Rich5 needed.
For the beach part, it was definitely a gift from the Muhich family opened up by God. As we were inquiring about places, we got a message from this sweet family that a cancellation had just happened and a week was available at their place. Normally, this place is booked out well in advance. This is also a place that honestly we could probably not afford, but as a graduation gift to Grace God opened the door and the Muhichs provided the place for us. We appreciated this gesture more than we can fully express!
As we boarded the plane, we realized that this was the first family vacation all five of us have taken together not centered around a sporting event or mission trip since 2005 (our last summer at LLYC). We needed this trip more than we knew.
This was a special, special trip! Honestly, from the very first drive to the airport early in the morning, we all recognized that this was a special trip for our family. From people watching in the airport to learning how to drive and navigate on the left side of the road with the steering wheel on the right side of the car, we had tons of laughs. We walked on the beach together, we played card games together, we snorkeled and did boat rides, we achieved and then broke family records in volleyball peppering and frisbee throwing, we visited sting ray city (yes you hold and kiss a stingray), we watched world cup soccer together, we explored new places together, and we even took family selfies together. (ok yes, a few of us also got up early and worked out together every morning and may have done a burpee or two on the beach). These are all special memories that we will share for a lifetime. Even driving home from the airport after 10 pm in Austin, we stopped and went in and ate fast food burgers and laughed and enjoyed one last meal together on this great trip. It was a special special trip!
Yet, what made this trip even more special is that this was a mountain top experience preparing us to go and serve where God sends us. He is sending all 5 of us for the first time to serve together in Egypt. So, he took all five of us to a mountain top and helped us prepare for what is ahead. We had time to be quiet and pray. We had time to read and study. We had time to think about and even plan some of the things we will do when we go and serve with a team. God gave us this special time together.
We also were able to talk about the reality that before we board that plane to Egypt, challenges will come. We have left the mountain top and now are engaging in the final steps before going to serve, so it is no secret that there will be ups and downs. Things will not always go as we plan, but we trust that God has a plan and purpose for our trip and He is worth trusting! We are ready to go and serve. Yes, we still have things to do. Yes, there is still unknown and challenges ahead. Yes, we are walking forward and trusting Him.
Thank you for praying for our family as we go and serve. Thank you for going with us through prayer and generous partnership. Thank you for helping to send the Rich5 and the RRM Goes to Egypt 2018 Teams. I can’t wait to share more what God does in and through our family and these teams!