Not bad for 40. This photo was taken overlooking the Aegean Sea. The Temple of Poseidon at Sounion is in the background.
While in Mexico on a mission trip at the beginning of April, I got a message to call the senior pastor as soon as possible. This worried me. Two years prior, I had received a call like this, and one of the members at my little church had passed away.
Expecting the worst, I made the call. Lewis was surprised by my quick reply, and told me that one of the women who had signed up for the Footsteps of Faith trip to Greece and Turkey had to back out at the last minute and would I like to go. Of course I would, I said, but money is an issue and is why I wasn't going anyway. He countered, what if the church pays your way? $6000 - How could I say no to that? It was like winning the showcase on the Price Is Right. Two weeks in Greece/Turkey, and getting to celebrate my 40th birthday while there. Pretty nice!
Now, the ironic twist is this. The day before I had been speaking with Reggie, who is one of our residents at the church. Each year the senior residents lead the high school students on a Footsteps trip to Rome, Greece and Turkey. He wondered if I would ever get to go with them. I said, I was low on the totem pole and there were many associate pastors ahead of me. Later that day, with the conversation still on my mind, I wondered what if someone on the Adult Footsteps trip had to back out - could I possibly go. Then I dreamt about it. In my dream, a woman got ill and could not go. I was asked to go in her place.
Okay, spooky, I know. I shared this info with my Mexico mission trip partners after I got the message from Lewis, and they began to tease me, saying, don't let Rachel pray for you. Obviously I did not pray for anyone to get sick. Just an odd turn of events. Can I help it if my dream actually came true?
Anyway, the trip was incredible. More on that later. And I actually turned 40 without too much stress associated with that momentous occasion. I am not sure how I can top this trip at 50, but at least I have a few years to plan. Maybe if I start praying now...just kidding!