Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Hilleberts Hit the Highlands

Hotels have been my existence for the last few weeks while going through job training for DFS. While it has been less than ideal to live out of suitcases while eating bad hotel food far away from Jordan, it was a wonderful excuse for Jordan to come join me for a few days and explore the city of Inverness -- the capital of the highlands. This city has been beautiful and a much needed escape from the granite walls of Aberdeen.

A large river runs straight through the city. We deeply enjoyed walking up and down the riverside soaking up the beauty and fresh air. We passed many people walking their dogs which made me really miss Leia... she would have loved it. 

On Sunday we were able to visit a beautiful Scottish Episcopal church (pictured below). It is heartbreaking to see so many beautiful cathedrals in Scotland with so few parishioners. Congregations are very small here (for example, the church we attend in Aberdeen has probably 30 people on an average Sunday), and that is quite normal in the UK. 

The Cathedral Church of St. Andrew

It was quite interesting to see that once you get this north in Scotland, you start to see Gaelic on all the signs.

One of the treasures we found in the city was a used bookshop called Leaky's. It was Jordan and Krisi heaven. Jordan actually went back later without me and bought me an original copy of a book that C.S. Lewis wrote on 16th century literature. It is hard to find C.S. Lewis's literary criticism now a-days. What a treat!

Last but not least, we were able to take a tour of Loch Ness (monster pictured below). The ruins of Urquhart castle lie on its shore.


Urquhart Castle

Friday, October 21, 2011

One Incredible Week

We are eager to report on God’s faithfulness to us here in Aberdeen! As Psalm 105 urges us: “Oh give thanks to the Lord… make known His deeds among the peoples… tell of all His wondrous works!” God has done wondrous works for us indeed! In a time of feeling completely out of control, He has guided us.

We have a home, and Krisi has a job!

Our New Kitchen... More pics of the flat coming soon!
When we arrived about a month ago, we quickly realized that the renters market here is incredibly competitive. A property would list and be taken within hours. This process proved very frustrating. Being a seller’s market, customer service was often non-existent – we would set a meeting to view a flat, and no one would show up (which can breed a very bad attitude I learned when you walked 1.5 miles just to get there).  However, in retrospect, we truly believe that all these failed attempts were God protecting us from taking something that was less than His best for us. He has provided a flat .5 miles from Jordan's office and .2 miles from Krisi’s new job (which she starts on Monday). This is such a blessing to truly be able to do life here without a car.

After three interviews, Krisi was offered an administrative job with DFS (a large furniture company here in the UK). It feels much like Rooms To Go but focuses on sofas. Her position will include processing orders, overseeing deliveries, and handling customer service calls. 

As you can imagine, we feel much relief at having the “search” part of this transition completed! Now we can begin to settle in and create our new rhythms.  Thank you very much for praying for us.

Jordan’s research is progressing well, and he is loving every minute of it! The community here has embraced us warmly, and we feel so blessed. 

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Greetings from Scotland!

King's College Chapel: Home of the Divinity Department
We made it! We arrived in Scotland on Wednesday and have found it is quite a whirlwind to set up life in another country. We are currently staying with some friends (Randy and Katie) while we try to find a flat, so life is being lived amongst suitcases and unpacked boxes, but we are so grateful to be here. The most fun has been soaking up the heavy local accents, walking through the old cobblestone streets of Aberdeen, and enjoying the perfect 50-60 degree weather. 

Jordan had his first meeting with his supervisor, John Webster, and is already buried in books - his happiest place! I am continuing to search for a job, but I have been encouraged by the locals who say that Aberdeen has the lowest unemployment rate in the whole UK (somewhere around 3%). Nonetheless, we are a bit anxious without a source of income right now.

So while we try to figure out that we are standing in a "que" and not a "line," that we are getting on a "lift" and not an "elevator," meanwhile trying not to get hit by all of the cars driving on the left instead of the right, we are trying to enjoy these early moments and trust God. It is such a joy to see Jordan so excited to start his research!

Thank you for your prayers regarding our travels, and we ask for your continued prayers to cover us.

New King's

College Bounds: Main street through campus

Where the River Don meets the North Sea

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Bitter-Sweet Day

Today brought some terrific news and a rather unexpected hurdle. This morning, we sold our Honda Civic, thus providing us with the remainder of the funds needed to pay for our first year of tuition! We thank God for His provision and feel incredibly blessed to be able to pay for our first year of doctoral work without taking out student loans. To our disappointment, however, Krisi also discovered today that she will not be able to continue working for her current company while in Scotland. We had anticipated her being able to keep her job overseas, and we are a little apprehensive at the prospect of suddenly finding a new job in Aberdeen. Please pray with us that we will continue to trust in God’s gracious provision.
"It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; He will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed" -Deuteronomy 31:8

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Thank you for your prayers! We received our visas today which was WAY before we thought we would receive them. We are grateful to have this worry off our mind. God is indeed taking care of us each step of the way.

Monday, August 22, 2011

28 Day Countdown!

We want to ask for your continued prayer as we gear up to leave 28 days from now! We have shipped 14 boxes of what we deemed "necessities" which mostly included heavy winter clothes, our favorite books, a few pictures, and kitchen essentials (it is amazing how kitchen essentials can be reduced to a sharp knife, a cutting board, and a good pot).

Earlier this month we finished the final step of the visa application process - fingerprinting. We had a slight scare, because on the day of our biometrix appointment, Jordan injured his thumb while working at Starbucks. The swelling and the band-aide imprint made his thumb-print almost unrecognizable, but after several attempts, they were able to obtain his thumb-print. We praise God for this, because a delay in this final step could have jeopardized us getting our visas on-time. However, we STILL need prayer that we receive our visas on time! We expect to receive them a week before we are scheduled to leave, but any delay could throw that timing off thus hindering our ability to leave as scheduled.

I am still waiting to hear if my company will allow me to keep my job while we live in Scotland. Not knowing is a heavy weight as we feel the uncertainty of what we need to live on. Please pray that we will embody Luke 12:22-34 trusting that our Father will provide for our needs.

We intend to begin posting more regularly, so check back in to follow us on our journey.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

We're off to Scotland!

Welcome to our blog! We hope to chronicle our three years in Scotland in a way that will keep you up to date with what God is doing in our lives and share our needs for your prayer. Our journey starts September 20th when we will fly to Aberdeen to start our new adventure. Jordan will begin his doctoral studies October 1st with Dr. John Webster.

During his program at the University of Aberdeen, Jordan will spend most of his time researching and writing his dissertation. Unlike American doctoral programs, Jordan will jump directly into his dissertation without further coursework. He will have regular meetings with his supervisor to discuss his progress as well as bi-weekly research seminars with the other doctoral candidates in Systematic Theology. Jordan's current research interest is in the area of ecclesiology (the study of the Church).

To learn more about the Divinity department at Aberdeen, you can click HERE, or you can visit his supervisor's page HERE.

Prayer Requests:

1. Please pray that Jordan's studies will prepare him for fruitful work in God’s kingdom and that his heart would be encouraged and challenged through God's Word.

2. Pray that we will find affordable housing close to the campus as we will not have a car there.

3. Pray that we will find a church home with strong community.

4. Please pray that Krisi's current employer will allow her to keep working from Scotland.

5. Please pray that God will provide for our tuition costs of $17,000 per year (for more info regarding our financial support see the link to the right).