Have you found them yet? The auntie who is always dropping off food or an encouraging word. The family who invites you over for a home-cooked meal. The grandma who gives you a big Mother’s Day hug. The school maintenance guy who invites you to join in his car-repair adventures.
These are the missionaries to the missionaries. God puts them in your path to support you and keep you going when you feel like no one cares, and your burden is too heavy. I can think of a few…
Andrea, my Kiwi older sister. We met once a week for lunch or a “hot cuppa” to talk about life or ministry-related challenges in my volunteer experience.
The Burmese refugees in Nelson, New Zealand. One of the church outreaches I was in charge of was to drop off some donated bread and milk once a week at their homes. In return, they taught me about their culture, deep Christian faith, regional food, and amazingly, their love for America—a very rare treat in New Zealand!
George and Elizabeth, the Yapese church members who gave me local medicine for my injured foot, taught me about the wonders of the coconut, and arranged for boating/snorkeling trips so we could search for manta rays.
Mom Miriam, an island grandma. Her Sabbath-morning-hugs and generous smiles always warmed our hearts. Once, while I was staying with another missionary who was in the hospital, she brought over an incredible American breakfast of French toast and eggs on her way to church. Last week, Mom Miriam passed away, and I’ve been thinking about her kindness and her special role as a missionary to the missionaries. She will truly be missed by many, and I’m sure she’ll be receiving many missionary-hugs in Heaven someday.
Life is tough in the mission-field, and so are people sometimes, but remember to thank God for the missionaries He’s given to support you and remind you of His love. And take a little time to love them and thank them too while you’re still serving Jesus together.
“So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.” – Galatians 6:10 (ESV)
Twice a month, we send out a short devotional to our volunteers. This one was written by Andrea Keele, and was sent out on June 19, 2014.