Bună dimineața friends!
I’ve had the realization that while my friends at school are probably tired of my constant chatter about Romania and Moldova, those of you I don’t see on a regular basis don’t know much about my upcoming trip, so I think it’s high time for an update.
First off, I have t-minus 50 days until my trip (give or take a day or two.) I will be out of the country from May 16th to June 6th. In Romania we will be working with an amazing organization called Word Made Flesh. (http://www.wordmadeflesh.org) I absolutely love the work they’re doing around the world, and feel so blessed to be able to work with them up close and personal on my trip! Our plan is to fly into Bucharest, and then spend part of our trip with WMF Moldova in Chișinău, and the other part with WMF Romania in Galați. This brings me to my second point.
As most of you know, Russia has recently invaded a portion of Ukraine called Crimea. Many of you have expressed concern that I am heading to that area of the world, and I would like to address your fears.
On this map, Crimea is the little yellow island in the Black Sea, to the south of Ukraine. Moldova is to the west of Ukraine, and Romania is to the west of Moldova. I will be in central Moldova, and southeastern Romania. Although this area of the world is currently quite volatile, Romania is fairly stable. The biggest difference between Romania and Ukraine is how long each has been independent. Ukraine was part of the Soviet Union, and consequently has only been independent since 1991. Romania, on the other hand, has been an independent nation for over one hundred years. Romania also belongs to the European Union, which greatly adds to their stability. For these reasons, traveling to Romania is not particularly dangerous. In the current state of the world, the only part of our trip that is of questionable safety is our time in Moldova. Moldova, like Ukraine, was part of the Soviet Union. It has a large Russian population, and is being watched very closely by the international community because no one knows what Putin wants to do next. My team has not yet discussed what ifs for our time in Moldova because it is too early to know what will unfold in the next two months. I am certain, however, that if Moldova becomes an unsafe place for us to go, we will simply stay in Romania for our whole three weeks. I am not personally worried though. I know this trip is in God’s hands. The truth is that nowhere is truly safe. This earth in general is a dangerous place, which is why I am choosing to not let potentially dangerous situations stop me. I know I rest in the hands of a loving God who will take care of me.
Another area of this trip where God has been caring for me is in my fundraising. I have currently raised $2275 out of $3600, and I have been completely blown away by the generosity of the people in my life! Through this fundraising process I have been learning so much about trusting God! Ever since I was accepted to the team God has been telling me over and over that He will provide. The thing is, He provides in His time, not mine. At the end of February I was approaching a large deadline, and a week before the deadline, I still needed $1000. I was beginning to panic when I received a phone call saying someone in my family had donated $1000 towards my account! Time and time again God is showing me that it is so silly to worry. He will never fail me! He has made it abundantly clear that this is a trip I am meant to take, so I am confident He will make a way!
To sum up this update I just want to express how grateful I am. I am grateful for God’s provision, and the way he is using this trip to teach me valuable lessons. I am grateful for the prayers and financial support of my community. And I am so grateful for this incredible opportunity to experience a new part of God’s beautiful world!