Where there’s a “why ” there’s a way. ~ Me
You can achieve what seems impossible, even long-held dreams of travel when you start with the right fuel. Here’s how I know …
The Trip of a Lifetime
… I just got back from Israel. The experience changed how I’ll view history, current events, study the Bible, and even how I’ll pray ~ for the rest of my life.
Yet, not long ago, such a trip seemed impossible.
You see, when our pastor announced plans for a Bible-based tour in Israel, I’d returned from vacationing in Paris only a week before.
Our travel savings were. tapped. out.
Yet when my beloved stick-in-the-mud husband said he wanted to go, which happens as often as moons collide, I jumped at the chance.
Israel would be a trip of a lifetime we’d both enjoy.
First, I raided our emergency fund to make the deposit.
Then, I removed nice but not necessary items from the budget, like stuff that turns the toilet water blue.
And L’Oréal hair coloring.
Because when your purpose was clear and strong,
you’re willing to embrace possibilities toward your goal you might never have considered otherwise.
Getting clear on your purpose helps your “impossible” happen.
A similar thing happened when I went on . . .
The Desert Hike of a Lifetime
That’s the time I hiked over 14 miles in the desert (even though I don’t care much for hiking.)
But I made that desert hike because I was fueled with a purpose: to honor those who endured the WWII Bataan Death March and shake the hands of the remaining survivors.
Karen Zale, the daughter of Bataan March survivor, John Zubrzycki, had a different purpose.
Zubrzycki survived the 60-mile trek through the Philippine jungle under brutal treatment by Japanese soldiers only to suffer more tortures on one of their hell ships. Three years imprisonment in Manchuria followed.
He endured beatings throughout ~ sometimes for no other “reason” than not pronouncing his prison number correctly in Japanese.
Until his death at age 90, Karen says, he signed all personal correspondence including family birthday cards with that number: “433.”
It was his way of declaring he was still living, no longer just surviving, despite an enemy’s attempts to break him. He wanted his loved ones to never forget.
Karen didn’t. She found out about the annual memorial march after her dad died, but signed up as soon as she did and traveled from Vermont to participate.
“I’m marching for my father,” she smiles.
To honor her father is Karen’s “why.”
What’s your “why?” Is it strong enough to take you where you want to go?
So honored to know you — you have created the best stories through your travel — who knows where it will lead but your adventurous spirit will guide you
MANY great stories represented by the THOUSANDS of people who marched, so especially appreciate you having enjoyed mine.
Hi Melodie…caught the link to your March in the Desert experience from my sister Karen. How in the world did you correctly spell our father’s surname of Zubrzycki? I miss the connection it gives to my ethnicity (Polish!), but being a Zale sure simplifies paperwork life! Thanks for going on the March…one thing that will always connect me to my father and his comrades of combat in the Philippines and subsequent slavery as POWs was that personal number, “433.”
Hi, Al ~
Happy to meet you! Actually Karen took the time to write out your father’s last name for me!
Before anything else, let me tell you as I told your sister, “Thank you.” I so appreciate your dad, his service for us. His story from the march to the slavery and “433” to coming home and life as a “Zale” is stunning. As for my turn in the memorial march ~ oh, boy ~ it was an EXPERIENCE to be a part of something so big with all these great people from across the country.
Melodie…thanks for your great willingness to become aware of what the defenders of our nation endure in their service…and in my opinion YOU are one of the “great people” you described who showed up! Bless you, son of 433
Blessings of joy to YOU and yours, Son of 433.
Love this! And I love the pictures you’ve included- you are inspiring me!
Glad to hear it, Melissa . . . now, pass it on!
Everyone should read the book Ghost Soldiers, which chronicles the dramatic rescue of the remaining Bataan and Corregidor prisoners at Cabanatuan, as well as the death march itself. John, your father went on to Manchuria because he was, obviously, one of the healthier men, but he knew some of the men who remained at Cabanatuan, and who are written about in this book. It’s a wonderful work of research and journalism and says so much about what life was like for those POWs.
Thanks, Tena, for pointing us to a great book about an amazing episode in American and military history.