Thursday, April 22, 2010

Travel Preparedness: A Four Part Series - Part 4

After much patience and waiting, The Harrington Times has finally succeeded in gathering the thoughts of Melissa Harrington regarding the spiritual aspects of preparing to travel.
So, without further ado, M. Harrington on Travel Preparedness - Spritual Aspects.

From the beginning, this task of breaking down travel preperations down into four categories has been a challenge. We know that we have taken steps to prepare for this upcoming adventure, however it's difficult to recognize all the pieces which complete such a puzzle. It is particularly difficult to flesh out the compartments to which each preperatory step correspond. For me, figuring out our spiritual preperations has been most difficult. Aside from prayer, I'm not sure what is most specifically spiritual - in ways, it all has been.

To prepare physically, we're downsizing, simplifying, giving things away, selling things. Jesus told the rich young man to sell all of his possessions and follow Him, so while getting rid of possessions, we begin to recognize what is truly valuable.

To prepare mentally, we have relied heavily on the wisdom of those before us and our own instincts. We've been talking to people about it; the adventure, the logistics, the fear, the leaving of loved ones - as our minds begin to wrap around the reality of leaving, our spirits too begin to wrap around the reality of leaving and how to carry us through those challenges and joys.

To prepare emotionally, we continue to seek out time with our friends and family, we look for ways to incorporate new ways of communicating, committing even now to keep in touch with these life-giving friends we've made. This process brings in countless aspects of our spirituality, allowing us a venue for discussions; how are we going to serve others as we travel, stay connected to friends who will pray for us and keep us accountable to living intentionally?

To prepare spiritually, we prepare physically, mentally, and emotionally. We consider our spiritual gifts, particularly that of giving. We discuss how will give back to the communities we are about to enter, how we might have the opportunity to give and how we can do wisely. We research agencies that are doing good works in our travel destinations. We pray. We hope. We live these days intentionally so we are prepared to do so in a less familiar environment.


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