I must agree. The details in the past two accounts have not been very exciting-- interesting, but not exciting. Coincidentally, this is the point. The months after our move to Jellico were not exciting. They were difficult, depressing and drug along. Yes, we were supplied, and yes, God's provisions kept us energized, but much of those years, and much of our time since, has simply been survival. It hasn't been an exciting adventure as much as the sheer determination to get up and go at it again tomorrow. Sometimes missions/ministry is that way.
An earlier post refers to the notion of a "journey". This has been that--a sort of journey. Along the way, I suppose I have come to believe that our years on this trek have shared, if not the experiences, then the learnings of the journey through the wilderness described long ago and summarized in Deuteronomy 8:2-7.
"Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not your would keep his commands. He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live by bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD. Your clothes did not wear out and your feet did not swell during those forty years. Know then that as a man disciplines his son, so the LORD your God disciplines you."
We haven't collected heavenly bread each morning, but daily provisions have arrived and often just one day at a time. Many times, their source has been one which appeared inexplicably. Our clothes have worn out, but our closets are full, and like many of you, we need to get rid of some. We have not hungered physically, but our budget has demanded that we enjoy simple foods when others have lived more expensively, though not any better. And the LORD has tested our hearts. The slow, long slog has driven us to the brink of despair; the stillness and questions about the future have circled our camp like Amelekite raiders and hissed fear and doubt into our hearts like fiery vipers. The character of our hearts has been tested every day, and in future posts I intend to share some of those moments with you. Some will remain between us and the LORD. The important point, however, is that throughout these 17 years, we have been treated generously, lovingly, and wisely-- as a man treats his son whom he loves.
If I were writing a novel, I might have been more dramatic, or delved into the description of a local personality, or sermonized, but drama just wasn't a major element of the early years. Most of what we did came more from the quiet waters of a deep conviction that God had a purpose for us in Appalachia, than the shallow babbling brook of adventure. Which, true as it is, does not mean that future posts won't startle, stun, shake, or sizzle because, they will.
We kept going, and God was in it. The 'good parts' are coming. So, you keep reading.