Diverse and Global family
I sat down at the end of the row. The morning conference session was just beginning. We were in Kansas City for YWAM's international conference.
This was the very edge of the big meeting tent, where all those with strollers and potentially crying babies were sent. It was full. Moms and Dads sat with sleeping newborns, alert babies, wiggly toddlers, and preschoolers immersed in their Ipads (thank you technology!).
The families were diverse. Some were families that bridged two races, some two countries. Many were bilingual. Some had traveled from halfway around the world. All were here with a purpose.
Sometimes it can feel like our life is a crazy roller-coaster ride of packing and unpacking. Our "normal life" is totally foreign to many people, either in the US or Panama. The girls are going to school here in the US for the next three months (something totally new to us). As we came back from the conference, I almost made a comment about getting back to "normal life" (school, etc) when we returned, But the truth was, flying across the country was more normal to us than attending a public school every day.
So on this adventure of life that is missions, it was encouraging for me to see that there are a lot of other families out there as crazy as we are. No, we are not better or more dedicated than other Christians. But the life of missions IS quite different. Sometimes the challenges are bigger, even bigger than I can handle. Sometimes the rewards are more than I feel that I deserve. And a lot of it in the middle is just tedious life and service.
So I learn to bring to God those challenges that I can't handle on my own. And I thank him for those glorious moments, when I get a glimpse of heaven through an encounter, a changed life, a moment of clarity.
This conference was one of those high moments. I just sat back and watched this incredibly diverse group of people, from babies and kids of YWAMers, to barely 18 year olds fresh in the mission, to people my age, raising their family on this roller-coaster ride, to those retirement aged and older, who have given their lives to missions, and are willing to give more. What an amazing group of people. What an inspiration. What a challenge.