Only 2 and a half months to go. For the last few months we've been in "hurry up and wait" mode. A lot of this has been waiting on people and organizations to get back to us with documentation and schedules. Since patience is not my best character trait this has not been easy. I'm torn between wanting as much time as possible here and wanting to go already. Suddenly it looks like all our ducks are lining up and things are starting to happen.
Over the last couple of days we've received e-mails with at least 4 downloads telling us about packing procedures, insurance, relocation specialists, rental properties, cultural training, language classes, reimbursement procedures, etc...A lot of reading to say the least. All this could be easily overwhelming if it weren't for one thing: I'm seeing God's hand in every new thing happening.
Just this week Mark looked up from his desk at work and who happened to be standing there? The guy who went to Italy 7 months ago. He's back for a few weeks and is taking Mark out to lunch this week to answer any questions we have. He's already given us some very good advice on how to avoid some of the problems he and his wife have had since they moved. He also said that since there are several Lockheed people there now,
the wives are getting together once or twice a week to go to the marketplace and other areas together. He's sending me his wife's e-mail info so we can be in communication before we leave. Yay! I can't tell you how excited I am to know that God is working to smooth our path and prepare friendships for us ahead of time! I'm starting to see this waiting period in a new light. As with everything else that happens in our lives it's God's timing that counts.
I think we have also found a church to worship with while we're away. The Milan Bible Church is a group of about 100 who cater to English speaking people. They have a doctrinal statement that rings very true to everything we believe: One God, one salvation through his son Jesus Christ, The Holy Spirit to guide our lives, living an upright and holy life through faith...Obviously this is not their entire doctrinal statement but the major themes are there. I know they may worship in a manner that's different from what we're used to but I'm so excited that we'll have a group of believers to help us in our faith journey. My church family here is so important to me that I can't imagine trying to live without that kind of support, even if it's only for a few years.
One more thing we found out. There is a company that works with Lockheed to help employees adjust to life overseas. They will be a go-between for us and the realtor and give us a tour of the area. They're even supposed to take us to the local markets and help us with currency. How great is that?
All of what's happening has put my mind at ease so much. I was to the point of waking up at 3 a.m. thinking about how things were going to work out. Once again I'm reminded of how short-sighted I can be. I'm thankful I worship a God who forgives my lack of faith (along with everything else!). I'm still going to miss my friends and family so much but I know now that I can look forward to the future that only God can see! Arrivederci!