The Road to Israel as it Unfolds – Part 1 “The Problem”

IMG_4018“We have a problem.”

The words I texted Daniel after checking on him last night.

This is a continuing story, with a mild cliffhanger today.

It’s about our family trip to Israel. Or rather, our preparation for it. As the story unfolds I will add the results here. All along we knew that this trip would be special, especially for my husband. It meant committing it to God and seeing how it would come to pass.

This dream was in my husband’s heart years ago. With our moving to Kansas and selling the farm, the dream became more of a reality. He told me, “going to Israel is coming from that farm sale.”

So we started planning.

January- Daniel and I finally sat down and booked the tickets to Israel. Flying out of Dallas, it would require us to drive down but we decided it was worth the money we would save. A week or two later we booked our Airbnb  for 6 days in Jerusalem and 2 days at the Sea of Galilee. The day to fly out was May 16th, just 2 days after Adam was done with school. As the days passed, we planned and scheduled including making new passports for the boys, shopping, and doing some research. We decided to go on our own instead of a tour group. February and March sped by. We went to Pennsylvania on a So ring break for Cindy’s graduation.

Life was kind of hectic after Cindy, our daughter came home from SMBI (a bible school that she graduated from in late-March) We came home to “busy.” Lots of guests and a little drama 😊 and Easter holidays, and year end school activities. It was all fun, but I decided in advance, that the week before we left for Israel, I would be pretty intentional about staying home to prepare so we would have a relaxed time through it all. We would fly out on Tuesday I reasoned, leave for Dallas on Monday, so I’d do laundry on Saturday and packing on Sunday at 3:00 after church. We were having Daniel and Sarah over (our son and his wife) to help eat leftovers, and we would take naps, all strategically planned.

For once I wanted to be on top of my game.

Saturday- Awards ceremony at school and then home again to do laundry. Adam came home from the picnic later (we skipped the picnic, too much to do) and I raced to town with him to get shoes and do a little business including buying him some Chic-fil-a nuggets and a frosted strawberry lemonade to celebrate him finishing his junior year. 👍 I rushed home to make a supper of beef tips and rice to use up the bell peppers and mushrooms I had, and finished up all the little things I needed to do with the laundry. In the middle of all that my family gave me some wonderful gifts for Mothers Day- a much needed power drill, some attachments, beautiful serving bowls and some cactus plants. Very nice.

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Time flew and before I knew it, it was late.

Midnight. Saturday. I sat down to unwind and do a little reading. The day before Sarah had sent me a video about “Things to remember before you go to Israel” and it had some helpful tips so I thought I might as well do my own browsing. I kind of decided earlier in the year that I would leave the “schedule of activities” planning up to Daniel and Isaac, I had done some looking around at different things like if we needed a visa (we didn’t) But now, I decided, maybe I should just double check if there was anything I had missed. As I scrolled down the article I had found with the title “What to know before you go to Israel” I read some info. until my eyes stopped on “Passport required with expiration date 6 months before entry date.”

You know that feeling. That feeling of dreaded alarm?!? That was me. Kind of a clouded dark feeling with a thud in your heart…

Cindy’s passport in dated August 2, 2017. Two months from our entry date. I checked more websites using keywords of Israel, passports and entry requirements. Some said that maybe we could get by, but mostly not good news.

12:30 am- I text Daniel

“R U up?”

“Yup”

“We have a problem”

I explained it to him, after some talking and research and a few phone calls, we realized the hard truth. We would have to head out Sunday and hope and pray that we could get an appointment to do an expedited passport for her at the regional passport office in Dallas.

So, you can imagine what my night was like…. 4 hours of sleep. I wrestled with it and prayed to accept what God was doing with this.

I decided to let my husband sleep, no need to have more people in our home worked up. I dreamed about passport personnel and such. And airports.

Sunday – Up early, told my husband what happened. He took it so well.

The scramble began. I took a shower, started packing, all the while directing and talking and texting and organizing, and feeling very stretched. Cindy ran off to make passport photos, we printed forms, ate leftovers. Sherilyn stopped in and dropped off some things for her sister in Jerusalem and she was a sweetheart and took some things to church for me.

I have the nicest friends who texted me and supported me.

I am blessed.

2:00. On the road. By now I’m doing ok. Because everyone is doing fine.

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Because, They aren’t worried.

Really?

Isaac, my wise husband said “The story is already written, we just don’t know what it is yet, it will be interesting to see how it unfolds.”

The fun began. I relaxed. Like the old days we listened to Adventures in Odyssey and laughed.

I took a nap.

5:00 pm- We stop in Oklahoma City to eat. It’s Mothers Day so Red Lobster is full, But yay! Johnny Carinos only a mile away! We had a wonderful supper.

Back on the road.

Isaac’s phone rings, a dear from Mexico calls. They chat.

Next. Waiting in backed up traffic 2 hrs from Dallas. We are strategizing how to get around it. Talking, joking.

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Telling traffic and road work stories. Exaggerating.

Daniel cackles as we take an exit to avoid the traffic back up. I’m sure it will help. We have smart men in this vehicle.

I laugh at their antics.

And my daughter’s words are ringing in my ear, ” What’s the point in worrying? It doesn’t help.”

So, I am with the nicest people, my family, IMG_4018Trusting in the most Wonderful God.

Waiting to see what tomorrow will bring. Praying. Trusting.

Singing “Come Thy Fount of Every Blessing” as we speed along past the traffic jam.

We covet your prayers.

Blessings! -Susie

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