I’ve just experienced a truly incredible morning.
Here at the Bakubung Bush Lodge in South Africa we woke early to catch the sunrise. Under a brilliant orange sky we saw and heard the wilds of Africa come to life, with exotic birds bursting into song and a herd of wildebeests wandering by.
In this remarkable setting I took the time to reflect on this two-week South African odyssey I’ve been privileged to experience. With our World Vision hosts and a group of Canadian pastors, I spent time in some of this country’s most beautiful and affluent areas, as well as her most desperately needy regions.
I thought back to the days leading up to this journey, and specifically to the ways in which I believe God was preparing my heart. I had sensed a very real challenge from God’s Spirit to not simply come and look at what’s happening around me, but to really see things in and through God’s perspective.
So, what did I see?
- I saw people who’s annual earnings most of us will spend on a month of Starbucks coffee, but who are rich in their love for God. To have had the privilege to worship with these people was to experience a freedom in worship I’ve rarely seen before.
- I saw people whose generosity was not contingent upon their level of income. Among communities of people with very little of what the world would call “wealth” there was a consistent spirit of looking out for those with even less.
- I saw in the hearts of the Canadian pastors on the trip a spirit of compassion and mercy that should inspire all Canadian Christ-followers. Their genuine love for the people we met should come as no surprise, but it was nonetheless affirming to see such care demonstrated.
- I saw God do a work in my own heart. I was challenged to examine my own life and my own priorities. I found God changing my definitions of words like “necessities”, “security”, “possessions” and “needs”.
My final reflection would be that, as a result of this life-changing trip, I find that my resolve to see the Church in Canada become stronger, healthier and more vibrant to be more intensified than ever.
Because I believe to the core of my being that God has a truly global role for the Canadian Church to play. And the more we can see our churches prevail, the more we will see God work through us to truly make a global difference.
I can’t wait to see what the future holds. For all of us.