I said before that I became a gymnastics fan because of the 1996 Olympics, but that isn’t the only thing that happened as a result of those Olympics. I was thrilled when the US Women won gold, but there was another country that caught my attention: Romania. I don’t remember ever hearing of it before and for some reason that I can’t explain, except for God, I was intrigued.
In the years that followed I learned as much as I could about the country, its struggle under communism, the large number of orphans there, it’s gymnastics history, etc. I found it all fascinating and dreamed of going there someday. Exactly ten years after I had first heard of the country I had the opportunity to travel to Romania on a short-term missions trip.
The whole trip was amazing! We went to Timisoara in western Romania where the revolution to overthrow the communists began; and spent a great deal of time in the square where it all began. We stayed just outside the city and each day drove to a village where we held a VBS for the kids there in the morning and evening. We had a lot of fun with the kids and witnessed many accept Christ as their Lord and Savior.
Some of the things I remember most about the trip were playing and interacting with the kids, (They taught us a hand game that you play in a circle, which was a lot of fun!) and them begging us to take their picture. They loved our digital cameras because they could see the picture right away, but I had to delete so many pictures because there just wasn’t room on my memory card. There was one girl Roxana, who I formed a special bond with, and I really enjoyed spending time with her and the other kids. I was the youngest member of our team by several years and was able to connect with the kids differently than some of the older members of the team.
The entire trip was incredible and something I will never forget! It was the first time I had really traveled without someone from my family, and I was nervous at first, but it helped me grow as a person, as well as spiritually. I remember attending a worship service the day after I got back and feeling closer to God I had ever felt in my entire life! During the next two months I really grew in my faith. Unfortunately at the end of those two months I hit rock bottom for no apparent reason, but those months helped prepare me for that time, and by God’s grace I was able to recover. I know that trip and what happened afterwards helped shape me into the person I am today, and for that I will always be grateful!
Day 107: Thank you Lord for my trip to Romania, and the work we were able to do there; thank you also for the impact it had on me personally.
What are you thankful for today? Leave a Comment and let me know, I’d love to read it!