By Angie Koenig
Earlier this spring, I was blessed to be able to take a two-week vacation to Australia. Before this trip, my feet had never left American soil. One of my good friends from college moved to Oz a few years ago, though, and I had always wanted to visit her, but I just couldn’t bring myself to consider spending the money or the time on a plane it would take to get there. With some encouragement from the Holy Spirit and some unexpected monetary bonuses, I decided it was time to conquer my fears and go visit my friend.
I thought I was just taking a vacation, but really God was writing another brief, yet monumental, chapter in our love story.
After a long day of travel, I lost count after hour 20, I made it to Melbourne. Stepping off the plane into an unknown land suddenly went from frightening to exhilarating. The next two weeks would be completely filled with things that were all brand new. Every moment of every day is in its fullness a gift from God – being in a foreign land suddenly made me aware of that reality in a whole new way.
I also ventured out of Melbourne and went to North Queensland to visit the rain forest and snorkel in the Great Barrier Reef. Those two days had me continually fighting back tears. Not tears of sadness, but tears that fell in awe of God’s creation – the reflection of His Goodness, Truth, and Beauty. I conquered two of my greatest fears in those days, heights and water. Riding in a gondola above the rain forest, high up in the sky, I felt God’s grace wrapping me up in safety. After a few minutes of hyperventilating, prayer brought me an inner calm that allowed me to bask in the gloriousness of what I was experiencing.
The highlight of the trip came at sea, snorkeling in the middle of the ocean, seeing things I never dreamed I would look at with my own two eyes. Fear again crept in in the beginning, and almost prevented me from a once in a lifetime experience, but God never left my side, and once I got in the water (and got the hang of breathing through a plastic tube) I didn’t want to get out.
Fish and coral and water, oh my! I even had to stop myself from smiling because it let water into my eye mask. It was then that I realized how much I had been missing out on in life by allowing fear to rule in my heart.
It took a trip around the world for me to realize I have nothing to fear as long as I place my trust in God because, in reality, I have no control, I never have and I never will. God’s goodness will always bring us through the joys and sorrows of life. We just need to place our trust in Him.
About the author:
Angie Koenig is a passionate follower of Jesus working her way through life as a Millennial. She is the youngest of nine children and embraces her role as a daughter, sister, aunt, and friend. Angie blogs about her love story with Jesus at www.spirituallyspokenfor.com. Currently, she resides in Eau Claire, WI where she enjoys anything that involves coffee.
Thank you for giving us a better idea of the beauty of Australia! I have never thought about it before, but had a friend who (and her husband) did, but you brought the actual beauty in a more vivid way to us in your words here. Thank you! I know I’ll never be able to experience it, myself, but I’m so happy that you did and that God was right there with you in your anticipation. He is always there, but at times like those, you really know His love!
Yes, I did enjoy this very much. Thank you for sharing your experiences with us.
Thank you for the kind words Grace!
Thank you Angie, for showing us that indeed we have a great God who loves us and cares for us beyond our wildest dreams as we place out trust in Him! Like Peter, we have to get out of the boat! Let go and let God!
You are so right Mary!
So beautiful love story…thank you for sharing this intimate experience, Angie.
I SOOOO needed to read this! (On the precipice of many new adventures with the Lord.) Thank you, Angie! God bless and keep you!