When we step out in obedience, we can bask in the confidence that God’s got our back. He is in control. There are no surprises with Him. The surprises are for us.-Dr Shelly Cameron, GreenLight
Journey of Discovery. Discovering the Lord’s will. Discovering new places – just wandering the unknown. Discovering his purpose for the rest of my life
For over two decades the Lord laid on my heart to visit Italy. Go figure. I have consistently misread thinking I’ll go at some point.
Then five years ago my eldest surprised me with a birthday trip to Paris. As I landed, I retorted … omgee it’s not Paris but Italy I am to go!
Last year, I decided to start a few things after I received news from the doctor that my cholesterol was a little high. Figured I had to do something to not be added to a growing list of medications Soooo … I started ballroom dancing. Yep. Loved it! But it didn’t let me lose too many pounds fast enough, so I ‘accepted’ a 6-week challenge from a gym I had ignored when I moved to the new area. The challenge was to lose 20lbs. At the end of the challenge, I had lost over 13lbs – a little shy of my goal but boy was I encouraged to continue.
Afresh, there was a very strong urge again to go to Italy. I know the best time to go is April or October since it’s cold at year-end and not the best time. But the strongest urge was there to not let the new year go by without being obedient to his leading. So, I made plans to go end December which was pushed forward to January. I didn’t have a clue where I was going. But when he said go, I finally got moving.
I followed the lord’s leading. I was going alone. Yep, alone. Yikes! It was a solo retreat with me and him only. Asked the Lord to pave the way for flights, accommodation and everything else. Maybe I would finish up the book RedLight when God says No. Hmmm I really didn’t know.
I didn’t tell anyone except hinting to my girls who are strong supporters of their mom and understand her ‘madness’.
I began thinking deeply of the possibility in the fall. A few weeks later my hotel association colleague offered me to stay at her apartment in Milan. Only problem, its night life is ‘amazing’ so not much sleep or a place to write I was told.
- It would be cold
- Don’t know where I’m going
- Need for adequate funds
- Obedience to his leading
I shared with two prayer partners to keep me in prayers as I journeyed. Partial funds came through a project I had been working on which coincidentally ended immediately before I was scheduled to leave. Godwink? Like Mary Magdalene I kept all these things in my heart.
The solo retreat touched hearts with inspiration even before it began. Before it was even paid for or properly planned.
I was going on a one-way ticket initially without a rush while asking the lord to route my way. I was following his lead for flights, accommodation, location of where to stay, what food to eat (I’m not a foodie) and when to return. Crazy going so far without a plan. To a planner, it was a quiet nightmare. I said, “really Lord?” People will think I’m crazy.