Have you ever longed to see a close friend? You probably spend a lot of time thinking of how it would work for you to visit them? The desire is there. But the means and timing isn't. Just because there is a distance, doesn't mean that your love or friendship is gone. You're in that space in between.
Paul, the Apostle wrote to many of the believers in the New Testament of his longing to come and visit. He didn't have Skype, Face time or a cell phone to make a quick call. These modern conveniences help bridge the distance for us. He was separated from them. Yet, his heart was right there with them. He prayed for them daily. He wrote long letters urging them to walk with God. He warned them of false teachers, and urged them to be thankful. He spoke about tribulation and suffering. Fighting the good fight of faith. And finally, he visited them. How sweet it must have been for Paul to finally visit the people whom he was discipling!
Equip2serve has those spaces in between. We on average have 4-5 teams a year going to West Africa to disciple pastors. Then we have those months in between where we have no presence in the country. We live apart. Oceans apart. We do have phones and email to keep those contacts close. Those are times when the enemy would love to discourage us. Knock us around a bit with his famous lies. We have to remain focused on the God of the work, not the work itself. We also need to take the opportunities like Paul did and encourage our friends whom we've discipled.
What do we do with that space in between? Is it well used? or is it wasted?
As we seek God in the space in between, let's be mindful of a few things:
*God is writing this story. He knows the beginning and the end. Bow to His Sovereignty. Kneel in His presence. Humble yourself. Keep eternity in view.
*Always be thankful. A grateful heart is carried through many a storm, coming out stronger & more Christ-like.
*Pray for others. Believers all over the world are being persecuted for their faith in Jesus Christ. Pray for boldness and grace in each of our overseas friends.
*Take action! Be ready to serve, to encourage and to exhort no matter where you are!
2 Timothy 1:14 "Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you-guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us."