This is post #15 and the final blog post of a blog series I’m writing including pictures of the recent amazing trip I took with our precious, beautiful daughter Leah. Here are posts:
#10, Torc Waterfall, and
We took so many pictures with our phones that I need to break up the posts, to make it easier for you to read, as I know you live a busy, hectic life like mine and you don’t have lots of spare time!
I hope these blogs inspire and bless you. I thank my Lord Jesus Christ, who made this amazing opportunity and prayer possible.
“I’m Irish not because I was born in Ireland, but because Ireland was born in me.”–Anonymous
I’m a speaker and writer, but words feel so inadequate to describe the beauty and mystery of Ireland. In my heart, I knew it was calling me and I had to go. It was such an amazing trip to take with my precious daughter Leah; we both can’t wait to go back!
As I wrap up this 15th and final blog post in this Ireland blog series, I want to share a few pics of one of the prettiest places we visited, Saint Mary’s Cathedral in Killarney. A Roman Catholic cathedral, it is massive and had gorgeous stained glass windows, which I love.
Built from 1842 and completed in 1855, its construction wasn’t continuous due to the Great Famine and lack of funds, so the work had to be stopped several times. This reminds me of how the work God is doing in our lives is continuous until He finally completes it, the Author and Finisher of our faith in Christ. Sin and many other things can stop His working in our hearts.
The church is still in use today. I didn’t realize this and when Leah and I went to visit it, they were having Mass. We stood quietly at the back of the cathedral, admired its amazing beauty, and took a few pics.
The architecture of the cathedral, both inside and outside, was amazing. The stonework is a mixture of brown and grey stone. Tragically, the grounds are a burial ground for dozens of children who died from starvation, and the monument was erected in their memory.
During the Mass, people light candles because God instructed His people in the Old Testament where an oil lamp was lit to “keep a flame burning perpetually” (Exodus 27:19-20); to show reverence for God and as a reminder that Jesus Christ is the source of all Light (John 8:12); to pray for people; to petition saints to pray for them (I don’t personally ascribe to that Catholic belief); and as the light is burning, to show a desire to remain in God’s presence as we go through our daily duties at home and in the workplace.
I miss Ireland so much! I pray that Leah and I can go back one day soon. One of the famous sites that Leah really wanted to see was Giant’s Causeway, an area of about 40,000 basalt columns which are the result of a volcanic fissure eruption–very unique-looking! It was named the fourth greatest natural wonder in the United Kingdom.
And of course there is a legend associated with it, of an Irish giant fighting a Scottish giant!
I was going to do my best to get her there, even though it is in the far northern part of Ireland, which was opposite the direction we were driving to the B & B’s.
She finally decided that it was too long of a drive to get there (we were both getting tired toward the end of the trip), and that it’d cost too much. I told her we will see it next time we go!
From this incredible trip, I learned:
- God can make your big dreams come true, and even exceed them!
- Pray and keep praying–God hears the prayers of your heart!
- Be led by the Spirit of God wherever you go and PRAY–He is your GPS! He will help guide you and to find your way, even to unexpected, wonderful places!
- Pack light and tight. I did this but still packed too much! Leave room for souvenirs.
- Make plans, prepare, be organized, but also be flexible and spontaneous for more fun! Some places that you planned to go, you won’t go. Other places you hadn’t even thought of–you will find!
- Stop and listen to the music! Keep your eyes wide open.
- Try new foods and drinks.
- Try to sleep on the plane! Wear comfy, loose, warm clothes. Eating turkey sandwiches and bananas can help you sleep (avoid caffeine late in the afternoon/evening).
- Stay hydrated! Stay awake and in the sun as long as possible to help with jet lag!
- Make sweet, precious memories with your children and loved ones!
- Always back up your pics and videos when you get home!
- Take time for coffee and chocolate!
- Laugh! Have fun! Enjoy every minute!
- Praise and thank God for His awesome blessings!
I can’t thank Jesus enough for this amazing trip with my beautiful, precious daughter Leah. I’m so thankful that she decided to go with me! We both conquered some fears and had a very exciting adventure! I believe it also gave Leah a little taste for more travel!
Praise You, God, for doing this for me and Leah and for blessing us so much! And now, here I am, Lord, send me–wherever You want me to go!
Remember, DREAM BIG BECAUSE WE SERVE A BIG GOD!