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Airplane - WingI've been thinking a lot about my recent multi-country trip.  It was an incredible time!  Looking back, I think there were 6 big things I'm taking away from it…

1.  Iraqi Safety — When you talk about going into Iraq, a lot of people start to seize up.  But I'm telling you: I felt totally safe & accepted in northern Iraq (as long as you avoid Mosul/Ninevah).  I'd even felt like I could take my wife & kids in there.  The northern authority makes sure the area is very safe.  The people in the area are SOOOO thankful that the U.S. stopped Saddam from persecuting them, destroying their towns, & gassing their people.  And when people saw our faces & our U.S. Passports, we got smiles & waves & felt nothing but warmth & safety up in the north.

2. Amazing Dreams — Over the last few years, I had met people who told me how, when they were not followers of Jesus, God spoke to them in their dreams.  And after investigating the Scriptures, they became followers of Jesus.  I heard the same thing again.  More AMAZING stories.  People claiming God spoke to them about Jesus in their dreams…which led to a time of investigation…which led to a time of commitment to Him.  Wow.

3. Suicide Attempts — I was informed about a terribly sad statistic while I was there.  I was told that, around one of the cities in northern Iraq (which I thought was a great city), on average 29 women/month attempt to commit suicide by self-immolation…by setting themselves on fire.  And many of them don't die…they suffer.  That's almost an average of 1 women/day.  I tried to verify the claim on the web & found some references to it.  My heart just sinks even thinking about the despair that would lead someone to attempt this.  I KNOW there is hope available that could change their lives.  My mind is spinning wondering how they could be helped.

I'll throw the last 3 things at you tomorrow…