I’m Heading to Dallas to Serve My Lord

Surreal!  That is the word that best describes how I feel right now.  I’m sitting in the plane at the end of the tarmac, waiting our turn to taxi forward and then take off on this flight to Dallas, Texas.  I have been on so many flights to places all over the world, but this one is very different.  This time I am going on an extended trip without my wife, Jill.  And I have said my good byes to my children (two sons and a daughter-in-law) not knowing when the five of us will be together again.

Let me back up for a minute and explain what is happening for all of us in our family, and then I want to write out a prayer to God.  Many of our friends receive either or both of our monthly ministry email updates and our weekly prayer & praise emails.  And there are a good number of people who read my blog and know what we are doing.  But for those who are reading this article and are not yet connected to us on a regular basis, I invite you to become a Subscriber to this blog (on the right-hand side), or write a comment to me to request to receive our weekly or monthly email updates.  (The Comment will be kept private.)

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It really is exciting what God is doing in our lives right now.  I will comment on my family first, and then tell you why I am on my way to Dallas.  Both of our sons are in their 20’s now, and are on the verge of stepping forward into their vocational choices of interest.  Eric has his Graphic Arts Design Diploma and we are all praying for and believing that he will find an entry job in this field.  At the same time, our second son, Glen, is just one phone call away from entering into the Canadian Armed Forces (Army).

I should stop here to mention more about this interesting direction that Glen is taking.  As far back as 2006, Glen has had an interest in joining the military.  There was an opportunity for him in 2009 to join but he was not feeling ready at that time.  But last year and this year, he really felt a strong conviction that this is where God was leading him.  Amazingly, there were no openings for Infantry Soldiers and many other trades during this time.

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Still, Glen continued to apply for a few different positions within the Army, and either the position would close again, or his paperwork seemed to get “lost”.  But Glen persisted, and prayed, and waited, and kept believing that this was God’s direction for him.  When asked by people why he wanted to join the Army, he would say, “I want to help defend the defenseless people of the world.”

About two months ago, we got excited that some positions were finally opening for real.  Then last month, Glen had an interview and passed the medical test.  Still we got no follow-up call that he was accepted.  I prayed that God would give Glen an answer before I flew to Dallas.  And can you believe it?  Five hours before the flight, Glen was told that he is on the “Merit List”, which means that he is basically accepted, and that within a matter of days or a few weeks, he will be called to go off to start his Army Boot Camp.  (Thank you God for answering our prayers.)

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This will mean that Jill will be the one who stays in our condo back home by herself.  I knew the day was coming when Glen would leave home, and I saw how God was lining things up for me to do my ministry work down in Dallas.  I have felt very concerned for Jill, and so I was very glad when God provided a neat solution to her situation.  In the midst of us praying about me going to Texas, Jill was offered a full-time position at her hospital and in the same unit where she is currently working.  And to fill the rest of her time, an opportunity has presented itself for her to do some studies in International Health at the Master’s level.

So what about me?  Due to my health (which you can read about here), it is clear to us that I am better able to live and function in hotter and more humid climates.  Summer time and the coming Fall in Dallas would certainly qualify for this kind of necessary climate for me.  And the blessing from God is that I will be able to do my Bible translation consultant work even better while living there.  And since the international office of our mission (Pioneer Bible Translators) is in Dallas, they have asked me to help teach some introductory linguistic classes to a number of our new missionary recruits over the next four months.

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In light of all of these things, I want to lift up my voice in praise and prayer to the Lord God, my King and my Father:

“Father God, I thank you for Your loving care and kindness that you show to me and to my family, whom I love dearly.  I thank You for choosing to use us to minister to the world through the careers that You are providing to all four of us in this family.  May we be Your hands, Your feet and Your mouth to all whom You cause to cross our paths.

“I do ask You Father to look after my family while I am away.  Be our Guide, our Comforter and our Protector.  As our family gets scattered to many places, let us hold each other up in prayer and keep us connected across the miles.  I know You will do this, and I praise You for hearing my prayer.  In all things, we give You the honor and the glory.

In Christ’s precious and holy name I pray.  Amen, and Amen!!!

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