Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Hello Egypt!

I've been spending a lot of time focusing on God's past faithfulness in my life. He's been faithful on so many levels it would take me a lifetime to not only figure them all out, but also explain the ones I do recognize.
Part of that looking back for me has been really tangible. My life before was never conventional (it's still not) and that sometimes brings a lot of hardships along the way, but throughout God wasn't only faithful, He poured out blessing upon blessing. Some of them were really precious and personal, others were really physical and tangible.

The Lord has continually blessed Elijah and I with the ability to travel and I think it's so crazy because I always LOOOOVED the idea of settling down somewhere and not traveling at all. My whole life was constant travel, I wanted to sit still for once... and now that the Lord has us in a stage of life that doesn't involve that much travel I've suddenly realized how much I loved it and how I still want that to be a huge part of my life. So basically God was already fulfilling a desire of my heart before I even knew it was a desire of my heart. He knows me so much better than I know myself.

I've also been realizing lately that part of that desire to travel isn't just because I like seeing new pretty places, but I really have a heart to meet new people and understand their life. To see them for who they are, to really see what they have to endure, what their struggles, joys and hurts are in life. It's ridiculously cool to think that I have the answer to everyone's hurts, everyone sorrows, everyone's hopelessness... and the answer is Jesus. I feel like I'm the last person in the world with the ability to sympathize with others, I'm horrible at connecting, at relating sincerity (even when I am sincere), at adapting to my surroundings. Yet, Jesus doesn't want to use me because I'm good at those things. He wants to use me because when He uses me, it's really a testimony of Him inside of me... because in and of myself I'm completely incapable of it all, but it's Him inside me.

Lately our trip to Egypt has been on my mind. God completely blessed us with an AMAZING deal to visit Sharm El Sheik for four days. We stayed in a 5 star hotel for literally nothing! We didn't venture out too much because at the time there were a lot of security warnings for Sharm El Sheik, but we prayed and were fine the whole time.
Looking back on this trip I'm just really blown away that God would bless us with just visiting Egypt, just because (well it was kinda my birthday gift, but it wasn't planned, the Lord literally handed it to us with an announcement of a sale in the Jordanian newspaper that was constantly left on our doorstep).
If God is willing to bless us with a trip to Egypt, in a 5 start hotel, with the Red Sea literally yards from our private bungalow, how much more does He just want to bless us in things that matter!?  Looking back at this trip just makes me super excited for all the things God has in our future. Even though our future is completely unknown right now and my life isn't that conventional, settled down life that I always wanted. My heart's desires are still the same, the desires He's given me and He wants to bless me with fulfilling. He wants to use us and make us passionate for His will. He knows our heart better than we know it and He has plans for us more amazing than we could have planned for ourselves.

This was the sitting room in our little hotel room. We stayed at Sonasta Beach Resort. 

All the rooms were spread out amongst an enormous property. You'd have to walk around beautifully landscaped gardens to get to various sections of the outdoor hotel.

The Red Sea! While we were flying from Jordan to Sharm El Sheik we actually flew over the spot where God had parted the Red Sea. It was incredible! I can't even begin to explain it. You can't go visit the area, so it was so cool to be able to see it! I felt really blessed. (we flew really low so we could see it all). 

The Red Sea was simply amazing! The water was so clear. I've only ever seen water that clear in Croatia. 

All the gardens were kept so nice and green. They had people watering them literally all day. 

We would spend all day at the beach but the hotel property actually had 7 various pools throughout the entire premises. Some pools even had pool bars, I was in heaven.

Snorkeling in the Red Sea was literally one of my all time favorite things I've ever done! I hope I'll get to do it again one day. There was so many exotic fish and you could even hear the Parrot fish munching on food. We saw eels too. The colors on the fish were incredible and so bright. God really created something amazing.

There were so many Russian tourist. Haha. Second most were British tourist. We were the ONLY Americans on the entire property. Haha.

The sun was so hot! You literally couldn't lay out without shade. I literally never burn and I burnt, even with constantly applying sun screen. 

We have a really funny photo of a Russian lady running passed us here holding her boobs. But I figured I'd blog the good one of us ;)

The entire hotel was gorgeous. 

 We finally decided to head out and see "downtown" Sharm El Sheik. There wasn't much to see. Sharm El Sheik is a real touristy area so a lot of the locals were really in your face trying to sell you stuff. But the Egyptians we did talk with who weren't trying to sell us stuff were really funny and nice. 

We went to the store and fruit for so cheap! Then we saw this stray kitty and bought her a yogurt. Egypt was different from the Middle East because there were stray dogs all over the town, in the middle of the day and people weren't afraid of them and they weren't afraid of people. I wanted to feed all of them. After the store we had a coffee and then headed back to our hotel.

5 star hotel in Egypt means 5 star hotel accommodations, but the food wasn't really 5 star hotel, it wasn't very good (blame it on the location). So we literally lived off the pastries, which were AMAZING! We would bring them back to our room and much on them all day.

In case you're interested BEST foods in this region of the world (and I say region very broadly): Yemeni, Iraqi, Moroccan. If you have a chance to eat any of these, eat them! And I don't mean at an Americanized version of them. If you can get the real deal, these ones are the goodems!

So there were several restaurants on the hotel premises you could pay for to eat at, or you could just eat at the hotel restaurant that didn't cost anything. After four days of eating not so great food, we decided to try ordering in breakfast. I've never ordered in before. We got all this food for only 14 euro. Egypt is the cheap place to be ladies and gentlemen.

What we could eat we enjoyed. We were so full!

Egypt was good to us.
God was so good to us!

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