As I look back on the time I had in Macedonia and Albania, I’m reminded how very blessed I am. Although things aren’t always “hunky dory” in my life, I can honestly say I am beyond fortunate and my lot is easy. I don’t have to beg for food, I have access to clean drinking water, and I don’t have to worry about a shortage of money. Not only that, but I am safe and secure in the arms of my Savior, Jesus. And that is enough, right? Even if all other physical conveniences fail, I have Him. I have my faith. Being immersed in a culture for 10 days with hardly any presence of The True Living God was heartbreaking, and eye opening. Who am I to sit on the sidelines, under the wings of “The American Dream”, and simply be indifferent to a lost and needy world? This question and more like that, have flooded my mind since returning to the States.
A highlight for me was getting to experience true Albanian hospitality in the home of Dave and April's house helper and her husband. I must note that during our time in Albania, Steve and I both felt an overall sense of kindness and friendliness in the people. Even with their state of poverty and lack of hope, their openness to us as Americans was intriguing. So, our last night in Albania we got to experience firsthand that very kindness and friendliness. Dish after dish of rice, pork, beef, cheeses, and olives were served to us over almost a two hour time period in their little living room. You could see the pride and honor in their eyes as they hosted their American friends’, friend’s. :) I wanted so badly to be able to converse with them and tell them how kind they were and how welcoming they made us feel. But alas, Steve or I couldn’t speak Albanian! ;) Sure, we learned how to say “falemnderit”(thank you) and “mire!”(good), but it’s just not the same thing. But, I must say it was fun to see Dave and April conversing with them, laughing, and translating for us. This is a memory I won’t easily forget.
My “Adventures in Albania”(and Macedonia!) was truly a wonderful experience. It was beyond anything I could have imagined. In fact, it still seems so surreal that just five days ago I was walking on Albanian soil. I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to see another life, another world, and a new perspective. I don’t know what God has for us next, only that it is good, and He is good.
So, falemnderit to all of our financial and prayer supporters! We could not have done it without your love and prayers. This trip will always have a special place in my heart, and I hope to return to Albania again very soon. :)