Our teaching team made it to Ndola, Zambia today, having left home at 8:09 a.m. on Saturday, September 11th. We have already met a number of interesting people and survived four flights -- Chicago to Washington, D.C., Washington D.C. to Dakar, Senegal, Dakar to Johannesburg, South Africa, and Johannesburg to Ndola, Zambia. Our teaching starts tomorrow, so we can relax a bit tonight and prepare. Just outside my room there is a rooster that crows every few minutes. I thought they only did this in the morning? It's 2:30 in the afternoon! Anyway, we ate at a Portuguese restaurant last night as a team and with an amazing pastor from South Africa. When we arrived in South Africa, what struck me most was that it could have been anywhere. There were tons of billboards, car dealerships, mini-malls, and McDonald's. Some of this was slightly depressing because I was expecting something more "foreign." But, what happened was that I realized how alike we humans are. How much we are connected and how important each one of us is to God. Here I was on the other side of the world and I couldn't have felt more at home. Nothing felt foreign.
And, this morning before we left for the airport, I thought about our team and thought how much we need God to guide us in this precious place. My attention turned to Romans 15:5-6, a lesson to all of us and a reminder that we are all God's children.
"May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."
Johannesburg, or Ndola, or Chicago, or wherever, may God give us a spirit of unity as we follow Christ Jesus. After all, our goal is to use our hearts and our mouths to glorify God. Imagine how much better we would be at that task if it were in one worldwide voice.