We've been in transit for one week. We miss our friends, family, and church in Denver dearly! But we also feel blessed to be here, in Brno, embarking on this new chapter to which God has called us. He has provided for us in every way and made this move unbelievably smooth. In fact, the move has been so delightful my friend Jen Rathmell wisely said, "You can never tell these details in missionary circles." Its true--it feels almost wrong to have such smooth sailing onto the mission field! Thank you, Lord!
When we landed in Europe we drove to Black Forest Academy to pick up Rebekah. What a sweet reunion! Then we headed to a local guesthouse where we surprised our kids by rendezvousing with the Rathmell family. The Rathmells served in Okinawa with us and have been my kids' best friends since birth--they're like cousins. They were en route to the US from Thailand via Germany and Jen and I plotted to knock their socks off. I felt like it was God's goodness to my missionary kids to have their loved ones from Asia welcome them to their new life in Europe. It was a treasured and super fun time!
On the third day we awoke early to drive to our new home in Brno. We enjoyed the views from our slightly loaded-down rental vehicle.
It's humid enough here that all the trees are covered in white frost. It looks like Narnia--a very different wintery look than what we're used to in Colorado. No sun either!
After about 6 hours we arrived at our new home. This moment was what all four of our girls had been waiting for. They have repeatedly said that they are most excited about seeing their new home in the Czech Republic. They were not disappointed! They love it.
Within a couple hours of our arrival, our container arrived with all of our stuff from Denver. This kind of timing is crazy and unheard of. As our team leader said, "You must've had some people praying for your move." Indeed, we felt spoiled rotten by our Father to have a home and all our stuff in one day on the other side of the world!
And here's our container--the exact same one we saw packed on November 14th. They said it wouldn't be here until Christmas or New Year's! That's our house in the background. Cute, huh? Like a gingerbread house, I think.
Since our arrival, we've been unpacking, building furniture, navigating the city and grocery store, and walking around in a bit of a haze. It's a lot to take in! We've been putting our minimal language skills to use and praying for the Lord to lead us and give us wisdom in all things. We even managed to put up a Christmas tree, er bush (we're not sure if all Czech trees are like this or if we just got the bottom of the barrel...regardless, we LOVE it, because it's making us a memory for our first year here!).
I'll close by sharing that we had dinner last night in the home of the Pastor of the church with which we will be partnering. We had a rich time with him, his wife, and two daughters (ages 6 and 3). We are blessed to know that we truly have a shared vision and calling for the Czech Republic and the nations. They are very gracious to allow us into their fellowship as we learn the language and culture. We pray that God can use us in some way while we adjust, adapt, and learn. Even in the midst of the conversation last night, it was said, "Well, for Americans many ministry doors are opened that are not for Czechs." Our prayer is that God would use our inadequacies for His name's sake!