Each summer, as finances will allow, I try to travel somewhere new. And on my way back from those adventures I always ask myself a few questions…things like “What was your favorite memory?” or “What was different than you expected?” or “What did you like the best, or the worst?”
Well, my recent trip to Dubai and Afghanistan was no different. On the way home (34 hour trip!), I asked myself all those kinds of questions. And this week, I thought I might share some of my answers. The questions is, “What did you learn?”
I think I learned (or am trying to learn) at least two important things:
1. Dubai is the land of plenty. It has just about every modern convenience you might find in Southern California. Afghanistan has almost nothing to offer the traveler. Nothing but perspective.
SO, I AM LEARNING TO APPRECIATE WHAT I ALREADY HAVE.
You and I have so very much. We have things and choices and opportunities and I need to value them much more. The morning I returned, I stood on the parking lot doing our daily pledges with the children and cried as one of them held the Bible aloft and we pledged to it. And then as the flag stirred in the breeze, my heart stirred as I considered the freedoms I so easily take for granted. I need to increase my capacity for gratefulness.
2. From my room in Afghanistan, I could clearly hear the Islamic call to prayer five times a day. Each time I heard that tonal announcement, I wished that the people of Afghanistan had the freedom of worship that we have. It is against the law to share your faith there. And should someone come to Christ, it may very well result in an honor killing by someone in that family. There are no choices, no opportunities to intellectually evaluate the claims of Christianity or any other religion. Children are not taught to think for themselves, to consider the alternatives or even to rationally consider the importance of faith.
SO, I AM LEARNING TO VALUE THE FREEDOM OF RELIGION THAT COMES WITH MY AMERICAN CITIZENSHIP.
You and I can take to heart the expression found in Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, let us reason together says the Lord…” Reason, exploration, discussion, consideration are all readily available in our culture. Our children can freely read and study, they can compare and contrast, they can seek truth.
Join me this week as we treasure our freedom to consider and choose our religious faith. I came to Christ because someone else openly shared their faith with me. That openness is a gift! And speaking of gifts, I invite you to join me in being much more intentional about my grateful spirit!
Sure am glad to be HOME!
By His Grace and for His Glory,
Sherry L. Worel