In a few weeks Anneke Pries-Klassen, one of our young adults, is heading out on “Enlace” a service/education trip to Guatemala with Mennonite Central Committee. How can spending five weeks in a place like Guatemala change a person? As a church we encourage our young adults to take every opportunity to have experiences like this.
What does it mean to find yourself in a place where you know no one, where you cannot speak the language, and you don’t know your way around? Going to live in another culture a profoundly vulnerable experience, and many people find it quite humbling. We can find ourselves calling on God in a deeper way when we feel we are on the edge. At the same time, God can open our eyes in new ways in a new place.
God calls us at times to leave the familiar and go to the unfamiliar. Abraham and Sarai were told: “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you.” Leave what you know and step into the unknown. Unknown things can happen in unknown places.
This Sunday we are having three people share about how a trip to another culture, another land impacted their lives. Hope to see you there!
This week’s prayer: Help us to listen to your voice, to hear where you are calling us.
A couple of years ago I had a very vivid dream. I had been reading a lot of stories about the Mennonites and their difficult time in the Ukraine, and I think they made a very big impression on me. I dreamed that there was a war here in Canada, and that suddenly it became very unsafe for young men. It was so unsafe, in fact, that my son had to flee. This was a sudden and quick decision we made and it happened in the middle of the night. Time was very short, he had to leave the house immediately. We told him that he had to go to British Columbia because that is where he would be safe. We stuck some things in a backpack for him and sent him out the back door of our house; we said good-bye, and we saw him jump over the back fence and disappear into the darkness. It was only when we got inside and a few minutes had passed that I suddenly realized that we had not given him a map. He was gone, there was no way we could give him a map now…and the thing that was so vivid about the dream was the terrible sense that we had forgotten to give him something essential for his journey. How would he know where to go, or what to expect along the way?
Maps are what ground us…maps prepare us for the journey ahead, and help explain where we’ve been. This Sunday we’ll be talking about maps for the Christian life. In a few weeks we will be baptizing one of our young people, what can she expect on the road ahead?
This week’s prayer: The road goes ever on and on…help us Lord to discern the right roads to take. And give us strength for the journey, and companions along the way.