Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! I wonder what this year will bring….

Ever wondered where you’ll be, a year from now? Expecting or hoping for any changes to happen in life within this coming twelve months? Planning anything exciting or trying to achieve new goals or follow New Year’s Resolutions? …I’m not too good at that kind of thing – I like the surprising nature of life and how we never really know where we could end up or what could happen. Things change at the last second and nothing really turns out quite how we expect. Story of my life, more or less 😉

So for me this year, I hope that by the end of it I’ll be changed in the ways in which God wants to change me, I’ll have learnt the lessons that God wants me to learn, and I’ll have followed the paths that God wants me to follow. I guess that would be my only aim for this New Year. You could say that as a resolution I want to argue with Him less and surrender to Him more – whatever that means….. Teach me, Lord!

The month of December was varied and good – the first half was full of deadlines and study-related pressure and the like, but it was good. Then for the Christmas holidays I ended up not going to Scargill as expected (it closed earlier than I’d assumed it would. I hope to visit when I can though – Easter maybe) but going straight to Harrogate, where I stayed for almost two weeks. It was lovely to see family and friends and catch up with many people. And it was a strange time for me, because I had no study-related work to be getting on with. For the first time in months I didn’t have Greek vocab cards in my pocket! And there were no constant reminders both in my head and on my phone regarding essays and other deadlines. It was weird, being in one place for 11 days and not having any WORK to be getting on with! But it was good.

On Christmas Day in the mid-afternoon I set off for Mission-Net, a mission-based conference in Germany, with 3,500 people from over 50 countries there. It was so good – though fairly exhausting, what with trying to do the stall AND participate in things going on, and getting little sleep (sleeping bags on the floor of a cold hall with 800 other girls)… But it was great. I met so many interesting people from cultures that I know little about, with such variety in life experience. And it was a lot of fun working on the stall with four really wonderful Redcliffers! I was sad to leave, but very happy to be back at college afterwards. I was travelling for the most part with a lovely family (with 3 teenage girls), who years ago lived in Bolivia! Teehee J On the return journey we travelled through Belgium, Luxembourg and France – it was good fun, despite meaning a lot of hours in the car.

Being back at College is good. I didn’t feel very rested on beginning the term just over a week ago (felt very much in need of a resting holiday!) but from midday Friday until yesterday evening Ben and I went to stay with his parents, which was very chilled and just so nice. We got to see Roger and Isha (ministry leaders from Bolivia) who are currently touring the UK speaking in churches and fundraising, and it was so nice to see them this side of the country! Next time I’ll see them I’ll be back in Bolivia…..

The third term of each academic year of my course is a “placement term”: six weeks away working full-time with a Christian organisation pretty much anywhere in the world. I chose to return to Santa Cruz, having been missing Bolivia far too much since the return to England. I’ll be working with a different organisation (but of course plan to visit the girls home etc while I’m there), details to follow soon! Watch this space 😉 And if you feel like contributing towards the cost of flights and the like, it would be very much appreciated.

Thanks for your prayers – and keep in touch! 😀

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