After wrapping up the conference at Word of Life yesterday morning, we made our way to the Albany airport. From there we flew to New York and then on to Chicago. Our plane came in over Lake Michigan after sundown, giving us a spectacular view of the lights of downtown Chicago. The whole region is blanketed with six inches of snow along with appropriately cold weather.

Just a few seconds ago I stepped outside and nearly froze to death. Since I don't have a coat with me on this trip (although George Theis and Dave Hoy both offered to loan me one), I'm wearing only a shirt and a sweater. The temperature is 15 with a wind chill of 7 degrees. Hard to believe I used to ride my bike in this arctic weather. I think the fifteen months in Mississippi has thinned out my blood, or maybe I'm just getting older, or maybe it's just plain cold outside.

We are staying with Dave and Lynette Hoy for three days. Tonight we will have the first of three home meetings for Keep Believing Ministries. All day long Marlene and Lynette have been preparing fliers for the packets of material. We're also putting CDs of three recent messages in the packet. We don't have the CDs yet, but we should have them before the end of the afternoon.

This morning Dave and I chatted with Mark in China via Skype. He gave us a video tour of his apartment and introduced to some friends who were over for the evening playing games.

At the moment Marlene and Lynette are upstairs working on one computer, Dave is working on another, and I'm working on a third one. Dave just came downstairs and said, "It's like a factory here."

It's been a good day so far, notwithstanding the cold weather, which is totally typical for Chicago this time of year. You tend to forget what it's like once you move away, but that chilled-to-the-bone feeling comes back quickly.

Chicago is still my favorite big city in America, and it's good to be here again, as long as we stay inside.

You can reach the author at  ray@keepbelieving.com. Click here to sign up for the free weekly email sermon.