As 2016 comes to a close, I look back on the year and I see that it was
quite a year – one of my favorite ever. Despite the busyness of the year and despite the health issues in my family, I really enjoyed a lot
of 2016. As a couple, and as a family, we have experienced a lot of joy and
fun this year. The reason is. . .YOU! You have made this year a wonderful
year for us. I look back at the fun times, and the sweet times, and the
times filled with joy – all those times were great because of the people we
were with. I enjoyed much wonderful fun and fellowship with friends and
family this year, and I am immensely grateful for that, and I will treasure
those memories for a long time.
However, now it is time for us to leave again. And boy is it hard to leave
again. And, of course, it’s all your fault. J Next time make our
furlough horrible and bitter so it’s easier to leave. Alright? I jest,
except the part about it being hard to leave again.
Five years ago, when we first took off for the mission field of Papua New
Guinea, the knowledge that there are people lost in darkness in the jungles
of PNG, and that God so desires for them to know Him, was enough to carry me
onward without looking back to what I was leaving behind. Now, five years
later, that knowledge alone is not enough anymore. It just does not do it
for me today. I need something else to carry me onward.
And so God is impressing upon me another truth. The truth that the fun and
fellowship I have experienced with friends and family this year will be
something that I get to experience and enjoy for all eternity. I do not
need to hang on to these things here in this life, for I will enjoy these
things and even greater things with my brothers and sisters in Christ in the
age to come and for all eternity. It is sad for me to leave these things
behind for now, but knowing full well that my time with my believing friends
and family is not short, or even limited, carries me onward to our next term
on the mission field and to whatever God has in store for us in this life.
So, thanks for being part of our lives. And thanks for making 2016 a great