As I type this, I'm sitting in the massive Atlanta airport awaiting departure for this amazing adventure which begins in a little less than an hour. In truth, my adventure began last week with a visit to my parents' house in Gulfport, Mississippi followed by a "mini retreat" with my dear friends Pat Gohn and Maria Morera Johnson (more on those antics soon!).

flightI'm a Nervous Nelly when it comes to missing flights, so I arrived earlier enough for a leisurely checkin process and some time to catch up on email. I will be without my phone this next week, so I spent the last hour saying some goodbyes to family. It's funny... I travel all of the time, but there is something about travel involving a passport which inclines me to be a little more intentional in saying my farewells. Ironically, today's flight to Bogota is shorter by ninety minutes than my flight home from New York a few weeks ago. But somehow the immensity of this trip feels grand.

I am now in possession of Colombian pesos. My crisp 20,000 bills feature the face of Julio Garavito Armero (January 5, 1865 – March 11, 1920), a Colombian astronomer. I only know this because a Facebook friend asked - if you asked me who's on the front of any of our own bills, I doubt I could tell you without checking.

currencyThis particular bill is worth a little over $6. One of our opportunities this week will be to learn what this amount of money will purchase and how long it takes to earn this in Colombia. Looking at the bills reminds me what a gift it is to have a program like Rice Bowl to unite us to the families I will meet in Colombia. While $6 will purchase a fast food meal at home, it's likely that those same dollars shared into a Rice Bowl can make a true difference in the lives of the families who farm coffee in Pasto.

It's almost time to board now, so I'll cut this post short. Thanks to all of you who are praying with us along this journey. Watch for a note on social media later tonight or early tomorrow morning announcing our arrival.

Please join me in praying through the intercession of Colombia’s patrons Our Lady of Chiquinquirá, St. Louis Bertrand, and St. Peter Claver for the success and safety of our journey.

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Copyright 2016 Lisa M. Hendey