Sunday, 12 June 2011

Farewell friend... Why do you have to go?

You wave good bye, excited at the adventures new that lay before you, as you look back your friends hands are perhaps only half raised, their smiles are saying 'thank you for coming' but their eyes are shouting, 'why do you have to go?'........

My wife and I have had many privileges in life and some of those have come about through working with some remarkable people in some amazing places. We spent 4 years in the Nilgiris Hills in South India before we eventually joined MAF which has taken us on other adventures and we have 'suffered' many farewells.

Today in Uganda .....  approx every 6th sunday Kampala International Church splits into geographic zones, rather than meeting in one of it's two regular sites. Zone sunday meetings are quite different, smaller more intimate, allows friendships to develop and more folk to be involved and use their gifts and there is always food. Here we are meeting under the shade of the Makindye and Lubowa zones marquee.

...twas a great morning talking and sharing about the pains/challenges of life and how God walks us through them. We worshipped together, shared communion, said some farewells then enjoyed each others company over a meal.

Ummm farewells.... one of the hardest parts of working overseas is letting people into your life then having to let them go again, whilst true for everyone in life, it is especially so when you work abroad. The temptation is perhaps, to close ranks to newcomers, not get so close, after all they will one day leave, as you will also one day. Jesus requires us not to travel alone but to join with and be joined by fellow travellers, be it perhaps only for a season. 
Funny first impressions aren't they, research says we sum people up in the first 27secs! perhaps you think in those early minutes, that  your going to be stuck carrying their burdens, then they surprise you, as they stoop down and carry yours!  True maybe on other days you may have to struggle with theirs, but so often it is not at all like that, it is days of chatting, eating, drinking, laughing and companionable silence. Perhaps they will journey a long way with you, yet you thought it would only be a day or two, whilst others will just travel a 'few miles'. Whatever you do enjoy each days journey.

A really warm thankyou to all those through-out the world who have let my wife and I into their lives and allowed us to share in each others loads.

1 comment:

  1. Have you not noticed that wherever you go you always seem to meet someone you know. I believe Richard Bach was right when he wrote;

    "Don't be dismayed by good-byes. A farewell is necessary before you can meet again. And meeting again, after moments or lifetimes, is certain for those who are friends."

    in his book Illusions.