Every Round Goes Higher, Higher

 (Friday, 10 PM, Hyderabad, India)   Each trip to India is different from the previous ones.  As I gain the advantage of hindsight I can see a pattern unfolding.  In 2006 I came with a group from a local church.  I just followed everyone else.  In 2007 I came with a native Indian, but for much of my time here I was on my own.  In 2009 I came and traveled on my own, but local India pastors always accompanied me as I traveled in India.  Then in 2011 I traveled in India on my own, but had someone else I was responsible for in addition to myself – my wife. Now I come with a friend (Jim Hodges), but the planning and responsibility falls on me.  He now follows me as I did others my first trip. We won’t have the comfort and familiarity of staying in Pastor Moses, home this time.  We will stay in a hotel on our own.   And to look into the future, I somehow feel there will be even more coming with me next time, more to organize, plan and be responsible for. 

            To be honest, I’d much rather follow the group, let someone else tell me what to do, where to go and take care of all the plans and arrangements.  It is easy for me to follow, I’m much more uncomfortable leading.  But isn’t that the way the Christian life works?  At first we just follow others, do what they say and do.  Then we have to start making decisions and traveling a path that is unique to us.  And before we know it we have others looking to us for guidance and direction in life.  Should I be surprised when I have to be responsible for someone accompanying me to India?  Aren’t I also responsible for those accompanying me in my family, church and daily life?  Aren’t you?  How many lives do you touch, how many are impacted by your example?

            It’s not just taking someone along to India, is it?  We all touch and influence many others.  We all are responsible for those who follow us: mates, children, friends, neighbors, co-workers, neighbors and many more.  As we grow in our faith God increases our responsibility to Him for those around us.  He moves us ahead, just as He is doing with me and my India trips.  He progressively stretches and uses each of us.  There is no plateauing, not coasting, no arriving – all of us are still in process.  And while we go through these things others watch, others are influenced, others depend on us.  They entrust their journey to us until the time when God uses them, too, to go on their own and then take others with them.

            May God bless you on your journey and may He use you for His glory!  Keep going, He’s got a plan and purpose for you as long as He has you on this earth!

           As for today, the first marriage conference, it went far better than I could have imagined.  Thanks for your prayers.  We spent the evening in a village of tribal people, original root stock of the Gypsies which have spread around the world.  You knew at first glance they were Gypsies by their dress.  Very colorful and over-the-top fancy.  Tomorrow is another day long marriage conference and then a church service in the evening.


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