We hope you all enjoyed your Easter Sunday as we did. This was our second Easter here and it has reminded us of the ups and downs of Jos living and how much we have changed and acclimated to living here a bit. One of the ways we have been changed is how we accept and go about encouraging other fellow believers here, other missionaries and other nationals.
As a family we are finishing up a book today called the "The Tinker's Daughter" A story based on the life of Mary Bunyon. Her father, John Bunyon was imprisoned for 14 years for preaching the gospel in England and while he was in prison he wrote the book "Pilgrim's Progress". Anyway, he had six children, one of them being Mary, who was born blind. There have been such great quotable thoughts within the chapters of her life and here is one of them that has impacted John and I. Mary's father, John Bunyon, was saying this to his blind daughter:
"By trying to do this on your own, you've robbed yourself of the joy that comes with working together. 'Tis not the final destination that God cares most about - but the journey itself. Which do you think is more pleasing to God: when we stop along life's way to encourage fellow pilgrims on the journey, or when we step over struggling pilgrims and race to a spectacular finish?"
Isn't that such a great life thought? We are learning this more and more here while there can be so many unpredicted circumstance changes within a minute, there is more need in mine and John's life to need others. This hasn't been really easy to always feel, but the fruit of it I think is more glorifying to God. Shouldn't we always be in a place to need Him? That we truly cannot handle life without Him? Well, anyway, the picture below is taken from yesterday. The couple in the middle have been these such friends to John and I since we have been here. They had us over for Easter lunch last year and again this year. They have been such Godly examples of living life fully for Him, our risen Lord and Savior. They have also been such great voices of wisdom and discernment since they have lived here for over 14 years.
We are grateful they have chosen to live their lives with the motto of helping and encouraging other believers along life's journey. I want to do that as well. Not step over, but come alongside others.
On a last note for today, not only has this family been there for us here in Nigeria, but so many of you have been there for phone calls, words of encouragement, financial support, prayers and just the willingness to just "be there" and listen. We are extremely encouraged and are under the realization of our need for all of you. Please know, your actions do not go unnoticed in our lives. If we haven't personally said to you thank you in the past six months. Please know we are soooo thankful for each one of you.
Christ has risen! He is risen indeed!