Missions conferences. There is nothing quite like them. They challenge. They encourage. They reunite. They ignite. They humble. They excite.
We spent the weekend in Huntsville as guests of a very special church family. It is evident that the families care for one another, love the Lord, take their faith seriously, and take themselves lightly. We laughed until we could hardly laugh anymore!
A very active missions committee made us feel at home immediately. Joe is the chairman of the committee and kept us in stitches as he introduced each of the missionaries attending the conference. Some very unusual connections, to be sure.
Friday night began with a dinner and a short service where we heard the keynote speaker for the first time — Dr. Cortez Cooper. Oh, what a man of God! And how clearly he proclaimed Christ and His work.
After breakfast on Saturday, my dear friend Lynne took Lizabeth and me for a special Mexican lunch treat. Lizabeth is a missionary with RUF working on a campus in South Carolina. We ate, we laughed, we walked around shops, we laughed, we drank coffee at the Chocolate Crocodile, we laughed and we could very easily have been the first people ever escorted from several stores — simply because we were laughing at everything. Good for the soul.
Saturday night and all the missionaries and committee members and their families all gathered for a relaxed potluck (pot providence?) dinner and simply got to know each other a little better. It was at dinner where I learned more of the connection between Lizabeth and one of the more elderly missionaries at this conference: Lizabeth was born to missionary parents living in Peru…NEXT DOOR to Mrs. Cochran! They hadn’t seen each other in YEARS!
Sunday morning. The Lord’s Day. There is never a question in your mind as to whether you met with the Lord when you worship at Westminster. A few of us were subtley wiping tears during one of the hymns. (If you’re not singing hymns, you are missing some of the richest moments in worship…) Lunch with the church family, evening worship, and then youth and their families met at Lynne and Charlie’s for a chili dinner.
Lynne and I stayed up much too late as we shared some sad moments in our lives over the past year. Laughter. Tears. Encouragement. (Thanks, Lynne.) Though Jim and I were still in our jammies we had to get a picture before Lynne headed to work…too early in the morning for my taste. I was wishing for a few more hours!
Perhaps I’ll share more about the weekend — with pictures of some of my favorite children in the whole world — at a later time. I really am trying to stay on top of my travels…and today is ACTUALLY Thursday. Lots to write. Lots of pictures. Much goes on in a day…