Saturday, December 23, 2006

On Being Grateful

It is the eve of Christmas Eve and I am very grateful. I am very thankful for each of my friends who pray for us. I am thankful to Southern Baptists and others who support our work with finances and prayer. I have talked to many of you who think that we are suffering for the Lord here in Middle Earth. I have talked to many of you who are terrified at the idea that the King might would ask you to come to a place like this. Well, Minas Tirith is not my favorite city. There are unique problems here that no one faces anywhere else. My boss says, "Exotic places always are until you get there." He is a pretty wise guy.
A few years ago there was a big famine. Many in the south of the country were facing critical food shortages. We partnered with the World Bank to distribute more than 1000 tons of wheat seed and fertilizer to farmers who had ground up next years seed and ate it in desperation. It was a challenging project for us but I was very proud of the work we did. We went to village after village for two weeks and distributed the grain. One day Gimli and I took sixteen metric tons of grain into a very remote valley. We gathered the whole village together, prayed for them, and distributed the grain. It had snowed that week and the whole world was white as we climbed out of the valley in our jeep at the end of the day. We crested the ridge and looked back over the white valley with the beautiful river snaking through the middle of it. In the distant East huge snowcapped mountains caught the setting sun and shone forth in a glorious display. Gimli looking back over the scene exclaimed, "Who GETS to have a job like this?"
Most days this is how I feel. Not everyday. But most days.
I love travel songs and poems. In keeping with the theme of the blog here is an offering from JRR Tolkien

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.

Thanks to all who give through the Lottie Moon Christmas offering and the Cooperative Program which enables me to live out this very full and joyful journey.

Merry Christmas to all of you.

1 comment:

stepchild said...

Thanks for a great post demonstrating our gratitude to the people who support us and the One who maintains us. I'm thankful too.