Day 1- And So It Begins…

As I hurriedly packed my final items at 4:30 this morning, I smiled at the sound of Luke’s little feet pattering down the hallway, rather sleepily, to greet me.  He was in a haze, but all smiles.  He will never be this age again.  His little jumbled words will become more defined, and his unbridled excitement at simple things like blinking lights and puppies will likely fade. Likely, too, will he outgrow the enthusiasm to wake in the wee hours of the morning to see his mom off to the airport.  But those days are down the road, so I cherish today.

Three mini peanut bags and eight hours later, somewhere between Salt Lake City and Atlanta, I am struck by Christ’s words, “unless you… become like little children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.”  And I wonder, am I beginning this journey as a child?  Do I have a list of all I want to accomplish, and a preconceived plan of what God has for me?  Or am I willing to say, “Lord…I know nothing compared to you.  My expectations and hopes pale in comparison to what you have for me.  Whatever blessing, whatever hardship, whatever challenge you have for me, I welcome.  I welcome because you are God.  And your thoughts are so much higher than my own.”

I had planned to write about my expectations for this pilgrimage – my excitement to walk amongst a million other Catholics from around the world, or my plans for things like religious lectures at the Prado, and loading my camera with hundreds of pics.  But instead, I lay down my expectations and put them at the feet of Christ.

Holy Spirit, I give You the right to teach me the simplest of lessons, and guide me to the edge of my limitations.  Big or small, this pilgrimage is about what You have for me.  Do not let me stray from Your path, and give me the grace to respond as Christ in all situations.  May I never be so proud that I am unteachable.  May I never be so self-doubting that I am too afraid to obey.  You have blessed me with this opportunity for Your purpose.  May Your will be done.  Amen.

Next stop Atlanta, Georgia.  Final flight, Atlanta to Madrid.  ETA: 9:40 am, Wednesday morning, local.


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