Isn’t it so funny how we always have to know what our plans are? We’re supposed to know what we’re going to do after we graduate. Not only are we supposed to know what we want to do after graduation, we’re supposed to have a detailed plan! Our lives seem to be spinning faster and faster among all our plans, duties, responsibilities, relationships, and general things we do to stay busy. Our culture has prided itself on constantly staying busy…constantly having a plan of what’s next.
I have never really been the kind of person to want to have every detail of her life planned out. In fact, I hate routine….so I have a feeling I would hate having my whole life planned out. But I have definitely felt the cultural pressure to know what’s next. The point is…
We have our plans…but I think God wants us to hold our plans loosely so that when he twists our plans around a little bit, we follow Him with grace and gratefulness.
We had a plan. We knew where we were going and when we wanted to get to our destination. The timing would work out well in relation to when the kids would arrive at camp. We would have time for orientation. Time for getting to know where everything was. Time to settle in a little bit as well as help set registration up and do whatever else needed to be done. That was our plan.
God had a different plan, however.
On the Friday of spring break, the whole Mexico Team met at 7am so we would be able to leave for the Columbus airport by 8am. We even left before 8am! Our first flight to Houston, Texas went fine. Then we arrived at the airport and we had a several hour layover, so we all got food and sat around and ate and talked for the time that we thought we had until our flight would leave a little while later. In a sea of red (because of our matching Mexico team jackets), we all headed over to our gate. When we got there, we discovered that our flight was delayed about 15 minutes. Although we all wanted to get there, we were okay with waiting a little bit longer. However, after several minutes had gone by, we found out that our flight was cancelled due to the Volcano in Puebla going off. Apparently we couldn’t fly because of the Volcanic ash.
We all booked it over to get in line to talk to the people working to find out when we can get another flight to Puebla. After a while, most of us were told to leave the line and stand on the side of the hall so there weren’t so many people in there. Everyone except for the leader and co-leaders stood around talking and wondering what was going to happen while the leader and co-leaders were trying to work on getting us all to camp on time.
While we were waiting, we broke into several different smaller groups to pray together. Also, since our music team had never gotten the chance to practice and we doubted that we would get to because we are now going to be late, our music team sat down (or several of us anyway) with a ukulele (the only instrument we had) and working on singing through the songs and figuring stuff out. It was our first time singing together :p
I didn’t know all of this at the time, but later I found out that some really cool things happened during that time. At first we thought we could get a flight at around 5am the next morning to Puebla. We were like, “Okay, we’ll just stay the night at the airport and then leave on the next flight to Puebla. That’ll be fine.” That flight was cancelled 20 minutes later. Zach, Carissa and Andrew had to figure out how to get us all there now that it looked like no flights were going to be able to go into Puebla anytime soon. They said they could get us there on Sunday. Yeah, that would not have worked at all haha. Eventually, the lady working said that there were about 5 seats open on the next flight to Mexico City, then they could take about 8 of us on another flight and 10 on another, etc. The leaders of the trip were like, “Well, okay..this is definitely not ideal, but maybe this is our only option.” So they began looking into that option. They were thinking about who would they send when, etc.
Then Andrew asks the Lady if she could just look again real fast. The lady agrees and refreshes her computer.
26 seats opened up on a flight to Mexico City the next morning.
No one had any idea where those seats came from. 26 seats?? We needed 25. God is good.
Next, we needed a place to stay. We thought we might have to stay the night at the airport, but Zach, Carissa & Andrew called the surrounding hotels to see if they had rooms available for 25 people for that night. The 12th hotel they called (I believe) was the place we ended up staying at. (It was so nice!) They had 7 rooms available for us, plus they were able to shuttle us to the hotel at night as well as shuttle us back to the airport at 5am the next morning!
That night we ate pizza for dinner, then went to sleep. We woke up early and left for the airport a little after 5 in the morning. We got on the flight to Mexico City.
Something else I didn’t know about until later happened on the flight to Mexico City. Zach and Andrew were sitting across the aisle from each other and apparently Zach mouthed “I lost my passport” to Andrew. Andrew started freaking out because if Zach couldn’t get into Mexico because he didn’t have a passport, he would have to speak at the elementary camp, etc. This went on for 45 minutes. Zach started looking in all the bags that he had with him. Andrew looked over and Zach looked more calm than he had before. He mouthed, “I found my passport!” Andrew asked, “Where was it?!” Zach said: “I was sitting on it!!”
We had a good laugh about that (later. lol).
We got to the Mexico City airport but we still had to find a way to get to Puebla, preferably before camp started in like 4 hours. We all rushed to the bus stop and the leaders asked when the next bus would leave for Puebla that had 25 seats available. We were thinking, How long are we going to have to wait for that many seats to be available?
A bus heading to Puebla with 26 seats open was going to leave in about 10 minutes.
Again, God is good! We rode the bus for 3 hours and we arrived at the Camp about the time the campers were arriving. We were all thrown into doing stuff with no time to think or get ourselves ready or figure out how this camp was run, etc. Ideally, we would have had an orientation, we would have gotten to know the staff a little bit, we would have been able to look around and see the camp and our cabins and just get prepared a little bit. But that didn’t happen :p It was a little chaotic, that’s for sure!
I have so much more to say, but I will write some follow-up posts soon. One of the main things I learned on our way to Mexico through this situation is that God has a plan. And it was different than ours. But that’s okay! Sometimes God completely redirects our paths and we don’t need to be stressed out about it because I knew that God would bring us to where we needed to go when we needed to be there. It would have been easier for us if we had gotten there when we were supposed to and it would have been less tiring to have one long day of traveling instead of two! But God is soooo good. He taught us so much through that interesting and unexpected experience and He still got us to where we needed to go! There is still so much to say, but I’ll leave it at that for now 🙂
Sometimes God says, “I see your plans and they are good…but I have better plans for you! I have plans that will better show you who I am and I have plans for you that will show you that you can trust me.” Sometimes I think I know where I’m going, but then God says, “Just kidding, this is where you need to go!”