Thursday, July 19, 2012

facts that are fun.

Ok, about time we fill our minds with Polish things. So, get ready to be thrown into a storm of all things Polish.

Poland is slightly smaller then New Mexico.
Poland and I are a lot a like...we don't mind being real close to people: Poland shares a boarder with 7 countries. And I always like to sit right next to my brothers, Thomas is always so thrilled!
weather? Temperate with cold, cloudy, moderately severe winters with frequent precipitation; mild summers with frequent showers and thunderstorms.
In Wroclaw, (that is where I will be) there is an annual city wide medieval festival, including jousts, horse archery, medieval dances.
There is a pope channel on TV, so whenever you need to see the Pope he is only a flip away.
In Poland bananas are pulled from the blossom end, not the stem end.
Over 50% of the land is dedicated to farming.
Pizza in Poland is made without sauce, which comes on the side and can be poured over the pizza. Sometimes this sauce is actually ketchup. (I will report back on that one)
The currency is the Zolty (zł), which means golden.
Polish is said to be one of the harder languages to learn. For example: Myślę, że powinniśmy teraz zatrzymać. Anyone? Anyone know this? (I think we should stop now) Hello my name is Hannah. How are you? Witam, mam na imię Anna. Jak się masz?

And this is just the beginning. Once I am ACTUALLY just think of all the facts I will have and will share with you! Lets go, right! :)
For now, all is the same: working at Aroplax and working on raising support and getting ready to go! I'm looking at flights again!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

what's the plan stan?

So, let me bring ya'll up to speed on everything Poland. As you know, or can read below, I was suppose to leave June 14th, flight booked and 91% packed, and then the night before take off the plan changed. I did not have my visa and decided it would be best to delay the flight to get my visa. And now I have my visa. So why the heck am I still here? As my dad says, 'get to poland already!' :)
    Well, let me tell you why. After the whole visa dilema came to a calming end I felt that I needed to be sure all my bases were covered before I left. I want to be all set to go before I board the plane. I have my visa, travel insurance, and am still 47% packed, but I am still in need of financial support. I did not want to leave and try to raise the money aboard, I felt like that was putting the cart infront of the horse. I want to make sure I am a good steward of what God is giving me, especially when other's have investing money. And I want to be available to people if they want to talk more about Poland. It was not an easy decision. I am missing 3 weeks of summer camps and people were counting on me, thankfully God provided extra hands for them. So, now I will hopefully be leaving around August 20th to become adjusted and start preparing for the school year. However, I have yet to re-buy my plane ticket. I do not want to do so until I have a bigger base of financial supporters. That is why I say 'hopefully' august 20th. :)
       What does a bigger base of supporters look like? Well, I am hoping to find at least 12 people who will commit as monthly donors of $25 or more. That would give me $300/month for my rent,  food, and transportation. While in Poland I will be working very part time in the schools, which will add a little to my monthly income. And since I am still home I am able to work at Aroplax where basically all the money I am making is going straight into my Leading Edge account for Poland. As you can see I am working my hardest at trying to fund as much as I can however, I cannot do this alone and I need your help. If you are not able to be a monthly donor you can make one time donations as well. Please pray about giving financially and please contact me with any questions/comments. And if you would like to know more about what I will be doing I would LOVE to meet up and talking about everything. Email me: or call me (I'm not putting my # up on here though). You can donate online (see right side of screen) or I will gladly send you a form where you can donate through the email. Also I should add that all money raised goes directly to me and any financial need I will have while I am in Poland.

So we can tentatively say I will be leaving towards the end of august :)
All in God's timing.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

How I got here.

I feel it is important to share how God has lead me to where I am today, specifically related to Poland. So, join me as I take a few steps back in time.  I know this has been in God’s plan far before I can remember or know. But when I think back on when I felt God preparing me for Poland was in my junior year of college. A few girls and I began a book study/pray group/accountability group every week. The spring semester we decided to read the book Sun Stand Still. It is a book based on Joshua 10 where Joshua is fighting to capture land for the Israelites.  They are fighting a hard battle and soon night will fall and the fighting will halt. Unfortunately, Joshua knows once this happens they will not be able to secure the land. So he stops and prays. But it is more then a prayer: it is a command. He asks God to stop the sun. He asks for more daylight so they can continue to fight and win the land. God hears his prayer, sees Joshua’s faith, and halts the sun. The bible says the ‘sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down for a full day’. THAT IS CRAZY! And yes, Joshua’s army did conquer the land and won the battle. So, this book goes on to encourage the reader to live with audacious faith to see that God has big plans for all of us, we must ask and be ready. We must live a faith like Joshua, Moses, Noah, Rahab, Mary, Paul, and all the disciples. Because we are no different then they are and our God is definitely not any different. We must fully give our lives to Christ because really what is life without God? Our whole being is to bring glory to Jesus’ name, even in our mundane daily tasks. So can you see how these book really challenged me? Well, I started praying that God would use me now for his glory and I prayed for my future after college that he points me into the right direction. And I gave that fully to him. And I prayed that prayer so many times over my junior and senior year.
            Last summer, I had the opportunity to backpack around Europe for three weeks with my friend Cate Cavanagh. We had the best time. We stayed with a missionary family in France and were able to see the work they do. You would say I caught the travel bug. Once I got home I wanted to go again! Interacting with different cultures and learning their ways was so interesting to me. I added living in a different country to my bucket list. And so my senior year began and I kept up my prayer that God would show me where the next step after college would be and gave it to him. I began searching the web for social work jobs, ranch hand summer jobs (yes, this is not a joke….though my family laughed!), missionary work abroad, teaching English abroad. Basically everything and anything! I emailed people and organizing. I kept this up the whole year and was getting a little discouraged and anxious by the spring when I had no leads. Yes, a few crying phone calls to my mom. 
       And then one day when I was doing my mundane daily asks of buying toilet paper at target I saw a friend there and we got on the subject of travel. I told him about my desire to go abroad. He gave me the email of his mother who was a missionary in Slovakia. I then emailed her and she connected me with a missionary family in Poland.  They were in need of a camp counselor for three weeks this summer. I emailed back and said that sounded wonderful but I was interested in staying longer then three weeks, and I was hoping to be somewhere for 6 months to a year. Side note: when I began this whole process I was saying three months…how did I get to a year? :) She emailed back and said they were actually in need of a person to teach kids English during the school year. She said they had a lot of need, and could use me. They needed help in their after school program working with inner city kids, which I have done for the past 2 years in winona and loved every minute of it. It all fit so well. My head just about exploded….for almost a year I got all closed doors and never much feedback and here all the doors were opened. I had prayed and prayed that God would make it clear to me and the answer was clear. I got excited! Then I got nervous. Then I was excited. And then stressed. And happy. The emotions have continued this way, however I know that God is in control and he will work all things out. He does not lead us astray. So I have faith in him that he will continue my journey to Poland. It hasn’t been the easiest or the way I have planned it. I have already learned so much about myself, God, and life through the journey so far. I haven’t yet left, but I feel like I have already begun the adventure.