Friday, March 17, 2006

Back From South Africa

Karla and I are home after spending the past (11) days either on an airplane to and from Cape Town or on the ground in Cape Town leading a team of (13) of the most talented and gracious people I know. I'm still trying to figure out how my interest in SA became so intense, but I am so glad it did. (Yes, I know it was God.....and probably Scott Harris had some to do with it as well!).

John & Avril Thomas are two people I hope to get to sit next to in heaven. Spending any amount of time with them either in SA or here in the USA inspires me and challenges me to look beyond myself, to look beyond all that I have and own (or think I own or act like I own) and see (and respond) to real need. I know there are needs all around me, even in Franklin and Brentwood, and maybe my concern for those whom I have met on the other side of the world will spur me on to do more here. John & Avril not only see the need around them, but they are doing something about it - and they are doing something about it by faith, not by sight.

I hate to admit this, but I don't live much of my life by faith. I live way more of my life by sight. I think that the more I have, the less I live by faith. The more I have, the more I can depend on the stuff - my experience, my wisdom, my relationships, my resources......there is such a fine line between what God has given to us to make use of for His glory and what God has yet to reveal to us simply because we lack the faith to act on what we have yet to see.

My body is very, very tired right now, so my mind may be in that same mode. I do know this - God has given me way more than I could ever deserve, and I am humbled that He would allow me to connect with people from the other side of the world to do what I can - to offer what I inspire and encourage them in what they are doing to bring the hope and salvation of Jesus Christ to their communities.

I know that I will be wanting to write more about this, but for now, I just needed to voice my heart and say how grateful I am.

BTW - the photo is a lighthouse near where we stayed. I love all the meaning behind this photo. John & Avril and their team of very ordinary, but very dedicated people ARE this lighthouse. All you have to do is walk through their communities to see this and know this. Thank you, Lord for these wonderful people....

til next time...