Looking Back – Looking Ahead

Looking back:

What we call the book of Philippians could best be described as a “thank you” letter from the Apostle Paul written to one of his supporting churches.   And here’s the verse that struck me this week: “I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again;”  (4:10) Paul was saying “finally” or “at last” but I was thinking “faithfully over and over”.

Missionaries who are supported on a “faith” basis (as opposed to salaried or expense account) don’t usually look forward to the summer months.  In fact, I’ve heard some joke that if they want folks to know how well they are supported, they’ll report their December income.  That’s when so many folks send a Christmas gift that results in an inflated (and much needed and appreciated) income.  But when they want to let folks know how little support they get, they report the August amount.

Apparently and unfortunately, many Christians seem to use the finances they normally would share with missionaries on their summer vacations, back-to-school needs or other expenses.  That is just the way it is… and has been at least since I launched out “on faith”, more than 40 years ago.  That is why faithful financial supporters are such a blessing to Eleanor and me.  We appreciate them so very much!

Looking ahead:

After our meetings in Oregon and Spokane, Washington on September 9, Eleanor and I will be driving across country to get to Atlanta in time to join the team going to the Dominican Republic.  **Remember that more of our missionaries have been killed and injured on the highways of America than in all the jungles and third world countries where we work!**  One of my missionary friends from many years gone by was just killed by a drunk driver this week!

Our trip out west has to be cut shorter than planned.  Our Chapel at Rosemary Beach has asked that I join the team going to the Dominican Republic September 17-21.  I will be teaching in a Pastors’ and Lay Leaders’ conference with out ‘sister church’ there an several others they have invited to attend.  It is a blessed privilege and I am looking forward GOing.  I hope you’ll be praying for our team there.