One week and counting!

Well, in about a week, Kori and I will gather our kids, wrangle our luggage and begin our family’s first-ever trip together to Asia’s Hope’s ministries in Cambodia and Thailand. The initial journey will take us from Columbus to Chicago, Chicago to L.A., L.A. to Taipei and Taipei to Phnom Penh — about 40 hours of airplanes and airports. We’ll spend about a month in Phnom Penh, three weeks in Battambang and three weeks in Chiang Mai, 70 days in all.

It’s hard to believe that since founding Asia’s Hope in 2001, I’ve spent almost a year’s worth of nights away from home. Finally, I get to take my home with me. What a blessing it will be to integrate both sides of my life in such a beautiful way.

Kori’s always been emotionally invested in the ministry, but she’s always been the one stuck holding down the homefront. I’ve gotten all the hugs; she’s had to pay the price as  a “ministry widow.” I’m so excited for her to experience the joy of Asia’s Hope firsthand. She’ll finally be able to put all of the pieces — videos, photos, stories — together with tangible experiences. She already knows the names and has fallen in love with so many of the kids, now she’ll finally meet them face-to-face. I can’t wait.

My oldest son, Chien (12.5), visited Cambodia and Thailand a couple of years ago, but neither Pak (11.5) or Xiu Dan (5) have made the trip. This is going to be an experience of a lifetime for them.My son with Chien with his friends from the Prek Eng 2 orphan home in October 2007. They all look quite a bit different now...

I’m going to be busy – on the clock pretty much 24/7 – but much of my job will include things I enjoy anyway: interviewing and interacting with the staff, documenting the kids and their homes, strategizing and building relationships with colleagues and ministry partners.

I’m going to try to blog as much as possible, probably at least two or three times a week. I’ll post lots of pictures, and will try to keep things as entertaining and informative as possible. I’d encourage you to bookmark this blog or subscribe to its RSS feed. Pass it along, too! I’d love to give as many people as possible the opportunity to “virtually” travel with us. 

Please pray for our health, our logistics, our attitudes and our finances as we embark on this epic journey together!