Traveling through multiple countries always has its worries. Will my bags make it? Will they stamp my passport? Will security take as long like it does in the USA? How will customs be? Will Nigeria let me in? What paperwork do I need out?
Then as I am being held up in the Paris airport, not able to check in or print my ticket because my flight is now closed- a man traveling to Africa with the CDC puts his hand on my shoulder & says… “it is out of our control. What is suppose to happen will happen. Sometimes these things happen for a greater reason unseen.” We began chatting about others things to pass the time.
Then the airline clerk said- “you are good to go. Now run to your gate!”
I thanked the man waiting in line with me. And off I ran.
I was reminded in that 5-minute period that I was not trusting Him completely.
That He was in control & He knows the bigger plan.
That He goes before me & behind me.
So quickly we forget.
I laughed as I, along with all the other passengers, sat for 30 minutes waiting on the plane to arrive.
Arriving in Abuja often brings it’s own challenges- so I was praying for smooth sailing & no issues in customs.
Hit with the wall of heat… I smelled Africa & smiled. It was so nice to be back. I had all my paperwork ready & at hand. I was the last in line & the only Oweebo (white person).
As I reached my turn, the passport control gentleman received my passport with a smile. “April. I was born in April. Were you?”
With a smile I said my mom was but not me.
“How long will you be with us in Abuja? Wait, where are you going to?”
He stamped my passport.
And just as he was passing it back to me… “You will be kidnapped like the woman at the missionary place?”
I smiled- mainly because I could barely understand him, shook my head, then realized what he said.
“Oh goodness NO NO NO!!!”
He and the 3 other men around him all started laughing.
He said, still laughing, “enjoy your stay here April. And try not to get kidnapped.”
My luggage was waiting on me.- but now to get through customs. Long line… lots of people… oh look- a hole. I slipped in & the woman receiving me looked at my luggage stickers, opened my passport & said, “I was born in April. Were you?”
“No mamma, but my momma was.”
“Have a great stay in Nigeria.”
I was shocked at how quickly I got through. It took me longer to void and remember how to flush the toilets than it did to get through passport & customs.
Thank you Lord for the smooth transition.
I praised him as I sat waiting for Carmen to arrive.
How good a Father I serve. That He already went before me & was trailing behind me- watching over me & placing the people & things in my path as just what I needed.