Our time in America has now stretched one month longer than originally planned as we wait on our new visas, but the Lord knew all along how we would need and use this time. We have decided to stay overseas for the long haul, and while we are back we are using this time to tie up loose ends and prepare to launch out long-term. It has been a joy, blessing, and encouragement to see friends while we are back, and last night was no exception. We visited a family who is extremely passionate about God’s global work and desire to see His Kingdom come around the world.
Towards the end of the evening, “Jim” shared with his young daughter a bedtime story about the New Heaven and the New Earth, using wooden blocks to build the city and river. He stacked one block on top of the other and carefully placed leaves on top, saying, “And this is the Tree of Life, whose leaves will be used for the healing of the Nations…” His voice cracked, and I felt tears spring into my eyes. Though I’d read the verse before, it struck me in a new way. After living overseas I have developed a much deeper understanding of the brokenness and pain in the world, and it feels overwhelming and hopeless at times. How could all of it be redeemed? And yet God has already planted a tree with leaves that are meant for the healing of the Nations. There is hope--a sweet promise of what is yet to come. As we pray for “His Kingdom to come on Earth as it is in heaven” and run the race set before us, this is our hope: a perfect eternity with our Heavenly Father who will wipe every tear from our eyes, and heal every wound.
This is why we desire to stay overseas and see this work through, even if it is hard. As we see people healed physically and spiritually, as we strive to see God’s creation restored bit by bit, we are getting a small taste of eternity. “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”