Some will have noticed that it has been over a year since I last entered a new chapter in my blog. Much water has flowed under the bridge in that time. Many will know that while in India in 2012 I contracted an e-coli bug that sent me for a loop. I had only been there for about 5 days, on our 17 day trip, and my lectures were just beginning. Having already made 3 previous trips and not having any problems with the food or water, I naturally felt that God had placed a wall of protection around my system. Yet, this trip was fraught with illness among the team members, far more than in other years. I was not the only team member hospitalized, though the only lecturer over the 4 years of visits to India. I struggled to continue after release from the hospital and was able to complete the lectures, though much diminished in capacity and energy. I finished the tour and returned home to immediate hospitalization again and spent many long months struggling to get my strength back, only to discover that it may take 12 to 18 months perhaps for my system to recovery satisfactorily. Consequently, I was not able to go back to India in 2013 and am waiting for the Lord to direct any further trips in future.
Strangely, many of my friends and family have taken the subjective approach to the situation with the thought that this is a good thing. Not my illness, but that it has shown that overseas travel in such primitive surrounds is not always a good thing. I on the other hand, will echo the thoughts of a former missionary who when asked about the fear of perhaps dying, while in service in such a difficult country, answered that he had no fear, he had died before he left home. We need to understand that God does not call and then send His people unprepared… even for death. We must die to self, daily; otherwise we cannot be truly in service to our Lord and King… we will always cling to some element of self-need or identification… that desire to live forever on our terms not His. Human nature calls us to equip ourselves and God calls us to let go and let Him equip us… all else is in vain.
So over the past year I will admit that I have had good days and bad days. Yes, I have hit low days of depression and struggled to remember that in all of this there is something greater than what my concerns are. Thankfully, over the past months, I have pictured the face of Jesus and heard Him say, “Yet not my will, but Thine be done!” It has been a journey that I would not have desired to take, but one that has been worth the taking nevertheless. It has made me look at another perspective of living near the edge and remembering that doing so is not always bad… it just depends on how we define the view while living there.
I thank you for your prayers during this journey through illness. I thank you taking the time to read my journal. I thank God for His love for His creation and for caring for those who are the disenfranchised and forgotten in this world. I pray that God will raise me up again to more work for Him in India, if that is His will. Until then I will pray for others and continue to share my thoughts and life journal with those who care to read and faithfully labour in the vineyard here at home.