In 2008 I made my first international trip and picked up this baby. My passport and I have been together a mere seven-ish years, but I thought we had a connection. A commitment to each other. Alas, our relationship seems doomed to end too soon.
When I reached 90% funding I decided to leave PA and come out to OMS headquarters in Indiana. I just needed to feel like I was getting somewhere. I’ve also made it a personal rule to always leave and return the country by way of headquarters. It’s a little less emotional than leaving from PA, and it gives me the chance to prepare mentally for re-entry. As I prepared to leave my parents’ house four weeks ago, I went to retrieve my passport from the place I’ve kept it all year. Long story short – in spite of tearing the house apart the passport is nowhere to be found.
For the past few weeks I would venture to say hundreds of prayers have been put before God, asking Him to reveal the location of my passport. At least eighty people have given some indication to me that they are praying. The speed of their response has been wonderful and humbling. AND shoutout to my parents for tearing the house apart looking for it! It’s difficult to understand why God hasn’t responded in the way we expected. Even now, I believe He could bring it out with just one word. Why does it look like He isn’t responding to the prayers of His people? I don’t know. At this point I think I’ve been through enough with Him to know it will all work for good and His glory, just like He says.
To get a new passport in 5-days-or-less-based-on-need, I have to have a plane ticket. To buy a plane ticket, I have to be 100% funded & approved by various people here at OMS. When I finally reached 100% (See my last post!) last Friday, I bought a ticket for the next week. I would have left America on the 19th and arrived in Australia on the 21st. As I’d prayed up to that point, and discussed the issue with my boss, I waited until this Monday to make the decision on getting a new passport. Meanwhile everyone continued to pray that my old passport would turn up.
On Monday I called the passport agency to make an appointment. The first available appointment…wasn’t until this coming Friday. They indicated that it could be done in time for me to leave on Sunday. Great! But then, a new obstacle: my visa. Can my visa, which is electronic anyway, be transferred from my old passport to the new one? Yes, they said. Typically it’s in three day or less, but they could probably take care of it sooner if it’s urgent. Another shoutout to my parents for overnighting the documents I need.
My appointment on Friday, though, is three hours away in Chicago. There would almost certainly not be enough time to get the passport completed, get back to Indiana, scan the front page of my passport, and send it to the Australian embassy in time for them to transfer the visa before their business day ends.
At this point, I just have to take a deep breath and be grateful for a few things.
#1. I’m 100% funded!!!!! Whaaaaaaat whaaaat!! Ministry can move forward!
#2. I have a visa to Australia!
#3. I bought insurance with that plane ticket!
Unless someone else cancels their Thursday appointment and I can snatch it up, I’ll need to reschedule my flight for the end of the month. Hmm…all of this would be solved if my old passport turned up! haha. Honestly, I’m not terribly disappointed. Since my visa is for a limited time (I’ll have to get it extended or reapply before January 20.) I obviously want to get back to Australia & NZ as soon as possible…but I am just content that I’ll be there at some point this month. Thank you God, for that!
It is such a privilege to have my dream job with HOPE61, working together to prevent human trafficking as God leads us. The funding, waiting for visas, and getting new passports are just small bumps in the road – and completely worth the trouble.