We just said good-bye to the last of the ladies group that was here. It was sad to see them leave—Rachel and I have truly enjoyed the fellowship. It was fun having them here and the time went by very quickly. I think they all enjoyed their time here and hopefully learned some things that will be of help to them in the future.
In a few weeks, we will have to say good-bye to Rachel and Sam as they head back to America to life. Rachel’s final appeal was denied, so she has no choice but to leave. Samuel has decided that it is time for him to come back also so he can finish with Bible Institute and hopefully earn a little money. We will miss them both very, very much. They have been a very active part of the ministry here and very involved in the work.
It will put a lot more on our shoulders with them leaving. But we knew when they moved here with us that they wouldn’t be here forever. We are thankful for the time that they have been able to spend here with us, but now it is time for them to move on with their lives. We really need your prayers in the next few weeks as we deal with this situation. Pray for them as they start over there in America—they need jobs, a place to live, and all that goes along with that. And pray for my hubby and me as we continue with the work here.
In true African fashion, the immigration office lost Rachel’s file. When she went to find out how many days they would give her before she had to leave, they told her since they had lost her file she had to leave immediately. She couldn’t stay any longer. The man that has been helping us talked with them and they finally agreed to give her 60 days before she had to be gone. We were hoping for 3 months, but are thankful for what we got.
It is never easy to say good-bye—but good-byes are a part of life. They help us to remember that nothing in this life is permanent. Things change, people change, and circumstances change. Time marches on, people grow older and die, children grow up and move off—all these things remind us that nothing ever stays the same. Sometimes we try to grasp and hold on to things or people too tightly. Then the Lord has to gently remind us that He wants to be first place in our heart.
Good-byes teach us many things. One thing they teach us is to live one day at a time and enjoy the things that God has given to us while we have them. Learn to enjoy the season of life you are in and don’t waste your time looking back or looking forward. Good-byes also teach us to never pass up an opportunity to share the gospel with someone because it might be their last chance to hear. Good-byes cause us to remember that we need to take the time—to say “I love you” more often; to make memories; to share our heart; to be open and honest—because next to our relationship with God, our relationship with our family is the most important one to cultivate.
Yes, my “mommy-heart” is breaking right now, and even as I sit here writing this update, tears are swimming in my eyes. Am I looking forward to saying good-bye? No, I am definitely not. I know that things will never be the same again. But I am thankful that God gives grace—and His grace is sufficient. And I am thankful that we can look forward to the day when we will never have to say good-bye again!
Until then, my heart will go on singing,
Until then, with joy I’ll carry on;
Until the day my eyes behold my Savior;
Until the day God calls me home.
Love to all,