When we got back to Mississippi after our honeymoon and our trip to Ohio, my whole family except Daddy was away at camp. We saw them all Friday night, and then headed to Florida the next morning. After our quick trip to Florida both Sam and I and my family were happy to be together in Mississippi for a while!
On Sunday morning we drove to Rienzi, a small town about 30 minutes north of where I live for Sam to present a report on Romania and his lesson on personal evangelism. It was a small congregation, currently without a full time preacher, so, I trust it was encouraging for all of us. Sam and I were invited to the Glenn’s home for lunch and we enjoyed an afternoon of wonderful fellowship and delicious food, we had some deer burgers!
Sunday evening Sam preached for my home congregation in Tupelo. We have been attending Northeast on Wednesdays and traveling on the weekends, so it was nice to come back and worship with the brethren at Northeast on Sunday night.
During winter break my freshman year I made my first trip to Texas, to visit Sam! It was the first time I met any of his family and it is debatable whether or not we were officially dating yet, and I can remember being quite nervous, but very excited on the trip there. I made my second trip to Texas with my new husband, and it was crazy to think back on all that had changed in between the two trips.
We were blessed by the hospitality of some dear friends of Sam’s family, the Redmons. I had not met them prior to this trip, but they warmly welcomed us into their home and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay. Though the trip was quick, the time spent with the Redmons was packed with encouraging and thought-provoking spiritual conversations and old stories.
Sunday morning Sam preached at Belt Road Church of Christ, where he attended for a year and a half when he lived in Texarkana and attended a local community college. After worship services we enjoyed Mexican for lunch, and it was the first “date” we had been on since we got married! Also while in Texas we met up with Sam’s friend Alex, whom I actually met when I came to Texas the first time, and we had coffee and a great conversation. Alex ended up coming with us back to Bradley where Sam preached that night. We went on a quick run with Alex before enjoying a meal with the Redmons, and we headed back to Mississippi again on Monday morning.
Me, Sam, and Alex
The congregation at Bradley, Arkansas
For our final long trip before Romania, Sam and I left at 5:00 a.m. Friday morning to drive to Chicago. After driving for about nine hours, we arrived at the Venuso’s home, who are some dear friends of Sam’s, and got in their car with them to drive to a singing about two hours away in Milwaukee Wisconsin! We had a wonderful night of visiting with old friends, meeting new people, and singing praises to God together.
Since this would be my first trip to Illinois, Sam decided to spend Saturday in Chicago! We drove around for a while until we found free parking, then we proceeded to walk three miles to the Riverwalk; it was a fun, cheap, and healthful day of walking and sightseeing. The weather was beautiful, there were lots of interesting sights to see, and the whole day was so enjoyable. That night we stayed in Rockford, where Sam grew up, with some other friends of his.
Sunday morning Sam preached in Rockford and afterwards we were able to enjoy a potluck meal with the members there. It was a homecoming of sorts to Sam. As always, it was such a blessing to meet so many new people in God’s family! It was exciting for Sam to see so many people he had not seen in years, and it was exciting for me to meet people and see places where he grew up.
Friends at Rockford
Sunday night Sam preached in Normal Illinois, about two hours away, where my dear friend Cassie lives. It was so exciting to see Cassie and her family and to meet many more new people! Sunday night we were blessed to stay with Cassie’s family, and we began driving back to Mississippi Monday morning.
It was wonderful to see Cassie!
Evening walk around the lake
Traveling all over the States these past several weeks has been exhausting physically, but it has been so uplifting and energizing spiritually! We are so blessed with many friends who welcome us into their homes and congregations, and we have been blessed to make many new friends. Although it is always hard to leave after such brief visits, it is such a blessing to think about how someday we will all be together, praising God together in Heaven. God truly has blessed us by making us a part of His big, wonderful family!
~ Julie Peters