Bibles, Check. Passports, Check. Lessons ready, luggage packed, it’s time for takeoff.
There are few joys in life that can surpass being able to serve the Lord as a family. As we head off to Southeast Asia to help spread the gospel I am humbled at the love shown by so many for this work: a dear cousin whom I don’t see near enough, cherished friends, the congregation with which I worship weekly, others whom I’ve only worshipped with once, and those whom I have never even met will all be with me and my family as we embark upon this mission.
And we are reminded that we are not alone in our Christian journey. Many souls are desiring us Godspeed and putting forth effort and prayers to assure a successful mission trip. Many have sacrificed so that we can go and support the church of Christ on the other side of the world. This is the distinctive mark of the Lord’s church. Christ said, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” (John 13:35). And we are reminded that we are not alone.
Sometimes, though, we all forget that we are not alone in our journey. There are times when we begin to feel small and insignificant. It is true that we serve a loving God, but we live in a world that is often less than kind. We desire peace with our enemies but not at the expense of joining with them. James wrote, “know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God“ (James 4:4). And we feel alone. Even many of those who profess to love God despise us because we refuse to take liberties with His Word. We feel alone in our struggles because our enemies seem to unite against us. But that is all an illusion. We are not alone in our journey: “For we are labourers together with God” (1Corinthians 3:9).
That is the lesson that we hope to deliver to the saints in the foreign lands to which we are heading: “You are not alone in your Christian journey.” While that is not the topic or theme of any of our prepared lessons, it is still a key aspect of what we are attempting to convey when we travel over 10,000 miles to meet with our foreign brethren and encourage them in their own journey. And that is a lesson that we all need from time to time: We are not alone in our journey. David wrote, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity” (Psalm 133:1). Dwelling together in unity means that there is a common doctrine that is shared. Brethren dwelling together speaks of a familial connection with one another sharing that common doctrine. And when we are unified in God’s Word, then regardless of our geographical location, we are a family travelling together on our Christian journey.