So....I packed and got on the van to ride to the airport....and on the van I read these words....
Here am I Lord, send me. - Isaiah 6:8
Conviction swelled within my heart. I knew I had some confessing to do. My attitude had been poor and my heart had not been committed to this trip. So I prayed...and as quick as the conviction the forgiveness came.
We arrived in Boston late and it was after 1am before my head hit the pillow. We were up and at 'em early every morning for the next 8 days and worked harder than I've ever worked on a mission trip. It was just the nature of the trip..the purpose.
In my short 8 days in Boston I learned that
1. Bostonians get a bad wrap...they are nicer than their reputation would have you believe.
2. Driving rivals NYC
3. Under extreme pressure, with no traffic, double parking spaces and a friend to help me, I can parallel park a 15 passenger van.
4. Baptist means nothing there...even if it's a word on your church sign
5. Homosexuality and transgendered lifestyles are opening celebrated and widely accepted.
6. The Atlantic Coastal region of Cape Ann might be my 2nd favorite place on the planet.
7. Boston Baptist College Campus is gorgeous
8. They are training the very people who will reach this city and other NE cities for Christ.
9. These students are learning to defend and understand their faith...believe me...in a way that will be challenged in a way I can't even fathom. New Englanders aren't afraid to eat you alive.
10. God strategically place this institution in the middle of Harvard and MIT and Cambridge...in the middle of humanism and liberalism to make a difference. I want to support this.
....I want to support something outside the Bible Belt. I was shocked at how shocked I was at the amount of moral compromise and governmental chaos I learned of ....we are so sheltered here in Texas and sometimes it's so easy to get wrapped up in our own little worlds that we forget how the rest of the world lives. They live different. They believe different. They cope different. There is only one uniting voice...only one united way....Jesus. He's the common factor that we all need. This was made more clear to me even before I left DFW on the way to Boston when I had the opportunity to talk to a Bostonian heading home about her faith. In which she said "I just need some hope". We truly do all need the same thing...hope....hope in Jesus. I got to share with her that hope. Who knows if she's decided to follow Jesus or not....but she knows where to find hope.
Sometimes we can get so focused on ourselves...our lives...our families...our hobbies...our churches ...our work...our desires...our problems, that we forget how badly the rest of the world needs to hear about our hope...our Jesus. This trip was a great reminder that those things are really ALL a person really needs.
This trip was also a great reminder that the US is full of places that lack the bright Light of Jesus. Because there are fewer Christians in Boston it's important to support the efforts...just the same way we support efforts to reach the unreached in other countries. So many times we make prideful statements that the US is "Christian" or "Godly" and in a weird way regard reaching our own as a lower priority...I beg...plead and boldly say....we are not a Christian nation..we are not Godly. It was never more obvious than walking the Cape Ann boardwalk and seeing our morals in such a decline. The harbor in Boston that welcomed so many for Biblical freedoms hundreds of years ago is much different today. Different in a very alarming way. We need to help shine the light brighter to these dark cities and I'm thankful for the short 8 days we had to walk along side, work along side and encourage and be encouraged by the staff and families of Boston Baptist College.
I'm already ready to return.