We now draw this saga to a close with a final installment. If we are spared, my feet will be planted on South Carolina soil the next time you hear from me.
These reports brought news from a distant land, but I hope they also erected a bridge connecting you to your field of labor. I prayed that each post would function as a hewn beam, contributing to the structure of that bridge. I am convinced, therefore, that these series of reports best culminate in directing our attention to all of you back home, 9359.6 miles away from where I sit.
You are engaged in a mountain of service, my friends. You embraced the sacrifices of sending two of your own to the other side of the planet, heaping up support and lending your prayers for the endeavors. You have personally invested in the cause of Christ in India and Sri Lanka, and, consequently, you share in the work here as much as anyone. Your own hand sows the seed with the expectation that both sowers and reapers will rejoice together on the Last Day. For those at GPC, this ought to cast light on what we learned from the end of Philippians 4. Epaphroditus merely tied the knot that linked the hearts of those in Philippi to Paul in Rome.
Thank you for entering into these labors out of devotion to Jesus and zeal for the promotion of his glory. I hope and pray that your engagement in the service of the last three weeks has heightened your passion for the priority of foreign missions — and that you will persevere in prayer for the world-wide spread of Christ’s glorious gospel.
Now for some final logistical details. We are scheduled to arrive at the Colombo airport a few minutes before midnight tonight (Monday) to catch a flight leaving at 3:15 a.m. (Tuesday morning). Since we will spend the whole of Tuesday traveling west to return home (i.e., “into the past”), Tuesday will contain 34 hours for Randy and me — 21 hours in the air and 13 hours on the ground. What do you think of that, children?
Three long weeks have passed under the bridge of time. Now the next stop is home sweet home, which leads me to my final prayer request: Please pray that all the flights and connections (Colombo, Dubai, JFK, Charlotte, GSP) go smoothly. Few things compare to the misery of chomping at the bit to be home and experiencing cancelled or missed flights that extend the delay. I will submit to the Lord’s will and providence, regardless of what happens, but it would be a huge blessing to zoom home with as much speed as possible. If the Lord wills, I could be passing through my front door at about 30 minutes after midnight tomorrow night.
I conclude this series of posts with the words of an inspired missionary hymn:
1 Lord, bless and pity us,
shine on us with thy face:
2 That th’ earth thy way, and nations all
may know thy saving grace.
3 Let people praise thee, Lord;
let people all thee praise.
4 O let the nations be glad,
in songs their voices raise:
Thou’lt justly people judge,
on earth rule nations all.
5 Let people praise thee, Lord; let them
praise thee, both great and small.
6 The earth her fruit shall yield,
our God shall blessing send.
7 God shall us bless; men shall him fear
unto earth’s utmost end.”
(Psalm 67, SMV, 1st version)
For Christ and his crown rights,
Pastor Rob McCurley