Not Your Typical Office

Not for the first time, I’m working from the play area of a fast food restaurant. The weather’s been cold and rainy, so there aren’t many things the kids can do outside. So we give mom a break, give the kids a chance to be active and loud, and I get some computer work done. It’s like an office on the road, because not only is there one close to our house, but we can find one almost anywhere when we travel.
This weekend we’ll see some friends who are planting a church. We’ve been praying for them for a long time, and it’s exciting to catch up and find out what God is doing. A couple weeks ago we visited some other friends, Tim and Eileen Sneeden, all the way out in San Diego. They’d just had their chartering service for the church, and were getting ready for their first anniversary service.

Water of Life in the Desert

Even growing up in Michigan with hundreds of lakes, we knew how important water is. When it didn’t rain, the water level in the pond went way down and the grass turned brown. But there’s nowhere like a desert to really see the difference that water makes. Miles of nothing but rock and dirt and some cactus, and suddenly a group of trees where everything changes from light brown to bright green.

There’s a contrast like that when you see a faithful group of Christians in a place where most people don’t believe in God, or at least don’t take Him seriously.

Deputation is exciting because while we travel telling others about our burden for Taiwan, we get a taste of other ministries and see the needs where we visit. Last week we helped a college friend in a church plant outside of Phoenix, Arizona. The small group of people meets in a school gym, but they are full of life. I (Brian) went along with my pastor friend, Ryan Horkavy, on some visits. It was great to hear about his “mission field” and be able to contribute to his ministry.

The week before that, we stayed in Tucson after a Sunday meeting at Bethel Baptist Church on the east side of town. The people were so friendly there and they are really earnest about reaching out with the gospel.

During our week in Tucson (during which I discovered that I’d been misspelling the name as Tuscon), we enjoyed making new friends. We also enjoyed doing a little sight-seeing. The drive to the Sonora Desert Museum wound up and down a mountain pass, with literally a forest of saguaro cacti in every direction. Another day we drove to the appropriately named Summer Haven at the top of a mountain. I guess snow in January isn’t so unusual, but it seemed strange when we’d been looking at cactus in 70 degree weather half an hour before. And while you might think that since water goes down, there’d be more water down the mountain than up, those pine-covered peaks are called “sky islands” because that’s where the life is.

John 4:14  “Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”