In just thirty-nine days, I leave for trip # 6 to Can Tho, Vietnam. This is about trip # 2 and it's from May 29, 2012.
Five weeks from right now, at this very moment, I'm in the sky on my flight to Vietnam for a twenty-eight day mission. I'm routed on Singapore Airlines through Moscow with a thirty-six hour layover/rest stop in Singapore. The tickets are bought and paid for and I'm starting to get in travel mode. That left just one little piece of formality. While my missions to Honduras and Haiti have not required visas, my trips to Asia have. So, this second day of summer vacation for me was set aside to apply for my permit to enter Vietnam which I have found is easier than procuring one to China and less expensive. But, this is still a relatively new experience for me as my first fourteen trips were with mission groups or churches and I'm not a very organized traveler. There were a number of steps that had to fall into place today and the Lord provided someone to help me every step of the way.
I don't have access to a printer right now so I had to e-mail several items to Trinka Sandahl, our WCS receptionist extraordinaire, and she printed what I needed. Cary Simonds, our Director Of Development, typed the online application form and made several duplicates. Amy Chavez, in our business office, copied my passport. At the bank, I walked right up to the teller without a wait and secured an $80 cashier's check made payable to The Consulate General Of Vietnam. I needed a pre-paid return envelope to have the visa/passport mailed back to me so I had to swing by a nearby Post Office. The lady who waited on me is a believer and when I asked her to say a prayer for my visa acceptance, she told me my prayers had already been granted. I did not get lost on the way to the Vietnamese Consulate as I did last year. There were no other applicants when I walked in although the security guard informed me there had been fifty or so in the previous two hours. The man who took my papers was very courteous and told me I should receive my passport with new visa within several days. And as I went through the automatic parking gate, it told me I had been inside such a short period of time, there was no fee! I drove back to my apartment a happy man.
Our minister, Dave Yasko, just completed a Sunday night series of lessons on Nehemiah that was terrific. One thing I've always loved about the story of Nehemiah is how the Lord opened so many doors to allow his journey to Jerusalem to rebuild the walls and gates of the City of David which were in ruins. He ran into all sorts of opposition when he arrived in Jerusalem but God had blessed him with safe passage and the means to carry out his work which was desperately needed. That's the way I feel today although my mission is on a waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyyyy smaller scale than Nehemiah. Every time I needed some help, it seems the Lord provided it, some from folks I know and some assistance from strangers, just as with Nehemiah. Like I said, I need help getting from Point A to Point B and once again, our Father made it happen. Maybe I should change that to Point V.
Applicable quote of the day:
“Here is a wise leader (Nehemiah) who counts the cost of the enterprise before
he does anything – a man who doesn’t rush in a foolhardy fashion. He is a man
of faith, but he sees exactly what the task is before he starts”
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