Dan, Heather, Jeremiah, Emma, Claire, Levi, Josie and baby Jane

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Five Loaves and Two Fish: Giving what we have to God

A sweet new friend for Emma and Claire!
Note Pike's Peak in the Background.

From Wolf Creek Pass facing West. The San Juan river snakes in the valley.



Lone waterfall...



The Aspens of Colorado.


Driving through Wolf Creek Pass in southwestern Colorado on the way to Mission Training International (MTI) offered another perspective on fall in North America. While the colors in North Carolina were varied and crisp, the Aspens of Colorado were constant and blurred within the evergreens, and equally incredible…gold speckled within dark green.

Unfortunately, I also saw two other colors in my rear-view mirror (blue and red) while trying to pass a slower vehicle on the mountain pass. However, the “slower” vehicle was already going 63 (in a 60 mph zone), and I learned something new…if you pass a vehicle it must be at or below the speed limit. Yet another opportunity to discuss with my children crime, punishment and the Grace of God (Claire was wondering if I was going to jail).

We are currently at MTI near Colorado Springs, undergoing a three week intensive training in missions. Subjects vary from handling interpersonal conflict (the number one cause of premature departure from the field), to proper stress management in a cross-cultural setting. The kids have class as well, learning the same subject material but in a kid-friendly format. Levi, unfortunately, vomited on the floor of the adult classroom during corporate praise and worship (while I was holding him), thus he was banished to our room, quarantined until no sign of sickness remained. Heather and I took turns missing class to care for Levi, which consisted primarily of maintaining a good supply of DVDs and Gatorade. As such, this allowed more quantity of time to digest the course material which, by nature, requires a certain amount of introspection.

Today, I was meditating on the fact that in 3-1/2 weeks, I will be the only orthopedic surgeon for 1.2 million people, on-call 24/7, having limited supplies and heavy patient volume with challenging pathology, fresh out of residency with minimal experience in orthopedic surgery in a third world setting. The question arises, “What on earth are we doing!?” As these facts threatened to overwhelm me, I wrestled with God, asking for skill and wisdom and perseverance and grace. The anxiety began to dissipate as I was reminded of the miracle of the five loaves and two fish. Here, Jesus took something basic and minimal (yet) from someone willing and available, and multiplied it to positively impact a multitude of people.

What are your five loaves and two fish? What talents and gifts has God given you for the sake of others? We give what we have been given back to God and trust Him to multiply it for his Kingdom, for his sake, for his glory.

“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.” 2 Cor. 4:7

Would you please continue to pray for our family? Your partnership with us in prayer is essential and we are so dependent upon you in this way! Equally, we would like to pray for you, so please let us know your needs.

Please pray:
(1) Wisdom and grace for Heather and me as we finish packing when we return to Phoenix in mid November.
(2) Our kids that they would transition smoothly to a new culture, that they would not fear, and that they would, with excitement, anticipate their calling to Kenya.
(3) That God would give me divine wisdom in the practice of orthopedic surgery in Kenya.
(4) That our family would be knit together in unity, that we would all truly love and forgive each another, and thus demonstrate the love of Christ to those around us.

Thank you!

3 comments:

Living Streams A/V said...

lol, try being the leader of the cars passing the semi to get to your exit on thanksgiving day and missing the exit due to being pulled over and cited.

I just love these blogs, we are praying for you

David and/or Lesley said...

Hey Dan and Heather! Thanks for sharing about the ways that God is encouraging you guys these days. It encourages us to read and remember those things too! We'll be praying for you as you get ready to move!

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