5 Years Ago Today ... Episode 1

I’m not sure I can remember a time when Jen and Melissa’s heart did not pound for Africa.

Late Winter ’06 - Melissa was speaking with her YA director and mentioned that she might try to go to Africa the following spring.
Maybe February ’08.
Robin (the YA director), "Melissa, now is the time. No more maybes!”

Late Summer ’07 - After speaking for quite some time on the phone with each other, newlywed Jennifer hung up and told her husband of Melissa’s plans.
Tony (the husband), “You should go with her!”

Fall ‘07 - While sitting around in our living room after the YA’s had performed at their Alma Mater, Jordan M. suggested they hop on Kayak.com and look for some airplane tickets.

Christmas '07 - After many hours on the Internet, it was finally decided and the tickets were purchased for January 30 – March 30.

December 27, 2007 - Elections are held in Kenya and for the month of January ’08 the world, and my girls, watched as yet another African country descended into the depths of their manmade hell.
EVERYONE involved hopes and prays for the best, but the “not knowing” becomes almost unbearable.

Middle of January '08 - Northwest offers a one time in change to their tickets and with heavy hearts, itineraries are delayed until February 28 – March 27. They will spend one month in Africa instead of two.

End of January '08 - Kenya grows quiet. In fact, after Jan 30 (you’ll remember the original departure date), not once was Kenya on the front page of the BBC.
When God calls He will always provide. The plans proceed. Prayers go up while the baby supplies roll in.

February 27, 2008 - I hugged them hard at Terminal 5 and promised not to cry. The simple NW text message came at 1:20pm on that cold and gray Chicago afternoon.
Flight 8611: Departed.

I cried out to God.

February 28, 2008 - while in the air, somewhere over Northern Africa, a peace agreement was signed by Kenya’s opposing political parties.

And so their story begins…

No comments: