We just can’t shake the tremendous love and value for life we experienced in our 2 months abroad, and frankly don’t want to lose the impression. Never had we anticipated that two drastically different cultures would be so similar at their very heart.
“THEY VALUE LIFE” sounds horribly hollow compared to the incredible reality of how people in the Middle East and Fiji interact with each other and foreigners. We experienced a beauty amongst these loving and kind people that is perhaps best described as a “mutual delight” in the “you” in front of them. They habitually stop for one another, opening themselves to a deep interaction beyond the casual greeting and would give you anything -- even if it’s their last. Old men, young men, women in Hijabs, and young children alike stopped us on the street and inside, because they wanted to bless Finn, honor me as a mother, joke with Drew as a father or brother. (Finn was acknowledged and greeted more than Drew and I combined!)
Ever found something you never knew you lacked until you experienced it? The cold, dusty city of Jordan and the overwhelmingly humid tropics of Fiji both foster an intrinsic value for human life. The love of God is not far, but WITH and IN these people -- and He wants them to know it is FOR love and FREEDOM from binding law and fear that He came. Many people heard the joy of Jesus and were met by His everlasting love, and we are left challenged to lay down convenience that we may habitually delight in people as these cultures do, and Christ would too.
THANK YOU for your support of our pastoral trip. Our five missions teams faithfully shared the salvation story, prayed for the sick, cared for the hurting, lived through the largest hurricane in the southern hemisphere...EVER, and were able to care for those who lost it all in the aftermath. Our long-termers and contacts have loved the partnership of our discipleship missions school, and are so blessed!