The wonderful thing about being a cross-cultural worker and world traveler is family expansion. While we all sing, “I’m so glad I’m a part of the Family of God,” we don’t really know what that means when remaining in the tight-knit body of our local church.
Traveling changes that. My family can be found on every continent on earth and from people of all different races and languages. Even my Facebook feed reflects this great reality. Anyone who says the Christian faith is a Western institution or White or European or some other kind of nonsense has no clue what they’re talking about. My Family is about as diverse as you can get, and I love it.
Then something happens like an afternoon phone call that reminded me just how close those ties that bind really are.
We met, not in the United States, but in the Middle East. She didn’t greet me in English but in Arabic. Our conversation picked up from where we left off the last time I saw her, which was over a year ago at least. We caught up on the kids and work and health, and then it came—how the Lord had been guiding her to move in a new direction, take a step of faith, and join a new ministry group.
Why would she tell me about that? Because I’d been praying for her, and she wanted continued prayers as she followed the Lord’s will for this new season of service.
That’s the beauty of the Christian life and our work on mission—our paths cross with so many others along the way. Yet, even though that intersection of time serving together or near one another may not last long, the relationship sticks. It’s maintained through prayer, letters, emails, texts, calls and even visits.
I know that I have brothers and sisters to whom I only have to send a quick text to get them on their knees on my behalf. They already know me. We are like-minded because of our unity in the Spirit, and that unity is like having a list of speed-dial prayer warriors whenever needed.
Another beautiful thing about the extended Family of God I have now is that heaven will be one great big reunion. The beautiful family I know now in this life is the one with whom I’ll find fellowship again some day soon.
Who are you going to call when the going gets tough? Most likely one of the new family members you’re serving with today. After all, you’re now connected for eternity.
Grace and Peace