Friday, November 14, 2014

Kind of Cool

There was a time in my life when the idea of crossing oceans on planes and Europe on trains would have sounded downright dreamy. Now that I'm living it--well, let's just say that while I love every minute of it, it's not always what I expect. 

Take yesterday. I was on my way to the Rhône-Alpes region of France, where I will be spending the weekend ministering in a variety of ways. The first train that I took was a high speed train that went from Tours to Lyons in three short hours. My next train was a regional train, that made several stops in small villages between Lyon and Grenoble. And then in Grenoble, this ancient inter-cities train pulled up on the track.

It was rusty and covered in graffiti, and then engine made smells that seemed to indicate distress of some kind. It was not at all what I expected. And definitely not glamorous. Rickety is more like it. I actually questioned the wisdom of getting on such a train, but what choice did I have? The ticket had been bought, and twenty minues down the line, someone would be waiting for me.

That is a pretty good metaphor for the missionary life. We live life between two places, and most of the time we keep going in the journey simply because we bought the ticket and we trust that God has someone waiting for our arrival. The how and the when and the where don't always look safe or reliable, but we get on the train just the same. And in the end, we look back and realize that the very thing that seemed scary or even unsafe, was actually kind of cool. And we're glad to have had the experience.

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