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being radiant in the present.

As a fire is meant for buring with a bright and warming flame, so the church is meant for mission, giving glory to God's name. Not to preach our creeds or customs, but to build a bridge of care, we join hands across the nations, finding neighbors everywhere.

We are learners, we are teachers; we are pilgrims on the way. We are seekers; we are givers; we are vessels made of clay. By our gentle, loving actions we would show that Christ is light. In a humble, listening Spirit we would live to God's delight.

As a green bud in the springtime is a sign of life renewed, so may we be signs of oneness 'mid earth's peoples, many hued. As a rainbow lights the heavens when a storm is past and gone, may our lives reflect the radiance of God's new and glorious dawn.

-Ruth Duck "As A Fire Is Meant For Burning"

This is one of the last songs that we sang at our commissioning service last night. We had sung it earlier in the week and I thought it was beautiful then. So, I was thankful that we sang it again.

Last night after we got back late, I tried to stay up, in order to trick the jet lag that will surely ensue after our 14 and a half hour flight. However, that didn't work, I fell asleep at 3:30.

I realized that it was ok, though, that I had fallen asleep early.

It's ok because the reason that I was so exhausted is because I have been learning and living in what it means to live in the present. Being present where you are is something that I have learned is a beautiful gift.

Being able to be present is difficult but that is how we can stay connected to our past, honoring it, and how we can look forward to our future with anticipation.

So, I am thankful for these past two weeks. I have made incredible new friends that I am certain will last forever. God has blessed me with this gift of friendship and growth before I leave.

But I remember where I came from and am thankful for all of you who have gotten me here. And, I look forward to my future in Mongolia--to meeting the people and loving them quickly.

So, if you have been a part of my past, if you are in my present or you are in my future, thank you for being a blessing to me.

Tomorrow at this time [I think] I will be in Mongolia. I will be in Mongolia...freezing, with snow.

Pray that we get there safely. Pray that we will see the sign that says "Holli and Erin" upon arrival at the airport in Ulaanbaatar.

May your lives all "reflect the radiance of God's new and glorious dawn" and that you can see the beauty of being present exactly where you are right now.

peace, love and joy.


  1. Holli, I love you so much and we're definitely praying for you! I know you'll have a blast in Mongolia. :) I'm so so happy for you. Adam found the mini note you put in my charm bracelet years ago last night. You def. took your own advice. You said, " January 12, 2004. Hey Wendy! You are my best friend. You are gonna mary your high school sweet <3! Grow up to be a good person! <3 Holli V." I'm super proud to be your friend. :) I love you!!! Have a great first day in Mongolia when you get there!! :)

  2. Praying for safe travels and for you instantly to fall in love with Mongolia. We love you, Mom & Dad

  3. Holli!!!

    I love you so much!!! I have also been blessed by you over the past four years! Praying for you!


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