Sometimes people have a funny idea about mission work, thinking it is travel to exotic places and speaking to thousands with little effort or work. That is not reality. What is reality is the quiet joy of giving what you have but it takes a walk of faith that involves work, active love and perseverence. Our 4th trip to the Philippines attests to this.
While we observed around 20 times with various classes of children and adults, conducted more intensive training with staff, talked with so many young adults or children that the names all blend together, and loved on our friends, it is an expensive and tiring ordeal. God gives us a glimpse of some of the fruit, but most of it we will probably never see. And, there are hard things as well. One little boy was making bad decisions, and no matter what my wife did to try to help, he would not change. We witnessed the product of relationships that had destructive effects; we saw broken people. We also saw wonderful believers–standing in adversity, trusting in the manifold mercies of God, and loving others while they were holding fast. As much as possible, we gave of ourselves…and gave…and gave…and will do it again.
When you have direct contact with the love of Almighty God and realize how much He loves us, how can we not help those in need of encouragement? We are back in the US now, but our hearts remain in a dozen places where we can be of use in His hand. Most of them are far from the beautiful piedmont section of Virginia, where we live.
While we have loved our home in Virginia and my wife has high stage cancer, we have opportunities to give away some more. We may give up our home and do just that. Why bother? Have you ever known the the presence of God or heard Him speak to your heart? If so, you know why moving forward might involve giving more away, and even moving to do it. I hope we observe the heavens until we are taken home. Regardless, it is a wonder and a joy to give to others in the meantime. We can observe and record scenes like this anywhere….