Some sleep-deprived thoughts as we return home from our amazing Myanmar Missions Trip
This may be the longest Friday of my life. Waking up at 4:45AM is always challenging, but even more so in a not-so-clean, "no-tell" hotel in the city of Kunming, China. That would work out to 4:45PM on Thursday, Eastern Time. From there, our vigilant team caught a 7:40 flight to Shanghai. Then a quick two-hour layover got us to our current flight going across the Pacific Ocean towards LAX where we will go on later today to Charlotte and eventually home to Virginia Beach at around 11:30PM. If my calculations are correct, that works out to a nearly 31-hour-long Friday to get back to the promised land.
It was truly a fantastic trip and we look forward to bringing a great report from our time in Myanmar. I don't want to spoil it now, but just write this quick note to encourage you all to be ready for a great Easter weekend ahead including:
- Outreach - Saturday @ 5PM
- Corporate Prayer - Sunday @ 10AM
- RESURRECTION EASTER SERVICE - Sunday @ 11AM
- Evening Worship - Sunday @ 6:30PM
Until then, could think of a few people that you know who you could invite to our Easter services? I know it's inconvenient and uncomfortable to reach out to someone and bring them to service.. But can we be reminded what this Good Friday is all about? It's about stepping out of the comfort zone to accomplish great things for the Kingdom of God. I'm so proud of our impact team for stepping out of comfort zone again and again during this trip. What about you? When's the last time you gave up some comfort to accomplish God's purpose?
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.” —Romans 12:1
For a more in-depth study, take a look at my blog from last year:
This blog was posted last year. I am republishing for Good Friday, 2017.
Pain. We try to avoid it at all costs. We build our lives around convenience and comfort. If a situation gets even the slightest bit uncomfortable we are prone to dodge it. How many jobs, marriages, faith journeys, careers and destinies have been abandoned because they brought about discomfort and difficulty? In a generation that worships comfort and ease, it is difficult to imagine that anyone would willingly choose pain instead.
It was not easy for our Lord. It was not comfortable or convenient. He left His throne and His crown in the glories of eternity to be born in a barn to a couple of peasants in Bethlehem. It is on this "Good" Friday that Jesus, our Savior, chose to bear the nails, the scorn, the pain of the cross. Not only did He choose pain, but excruciation! The worst possible pain that a human being can experience. Worse than that, the emotional and spiritual distress of being separated from His Father as he bore the sins of us all on that most unjust day.
Let us fall out of love with our false God of convenience as we consider the ultimate sacrifice of the "Lamb slain before the foundation of the earth" (Rev 13:8). If our Savior chose to suffer on our behalf, shouldn't we be willing to accept some inconvenience and discomfort on His?