Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Final Pages of this Life Volume

Tomorrow is the last page of a long chapter in this volume of our life, and the first page of a new chapter in a new volume. At 10:40, I will fly north towards the great nation called the United States.

Looking back, it's been some ride. We returned to South America thinking we would do one thing. Before we even stepped foot on South American soil, we found that our job had changed. Not that we minded; we are here for the Lord's pleasure. It seemed that it pleased him to change our roles.

What have we seen in the past term of ministry? We have seen victory above all else. We have seen scores--hundreds--pray to receive Christ. We have seen dozens and dozens respond to the call to missions and Christian ministry. God started churches in some areas; in other areas, some churches ceased to meet. We helped build a community in one place. In another, the community gave us their building for us to meet church.

There have been joys in abundance. We have laughed and enjoyed deeply the presence of Jesus in our midst. Friends have been plentiful. There has been good fellowship with believers, both missionaries and nationals. Pam and I were even "officially married" in a local church in our 25th wedding anniversary. It was a fun celebration.

There have also been heartaches. But in all of it God has proven himself the faithful friend he tells us he is. We have been knocked to the ground, metaphorically speaking; but we were able to stand back up because our strength is not from us. Our strength is that same resurrection power that raised Jesus from the dead and seated him at the right hand of God in heavenly places. There he reigns victorious, above all principalities and powers. Here he reigns victorious in our hearts.

There have been battles. You don't start churches, win the lost, train leaders, disciple new believers, and other things important to starting churches without them.

Sometimes the battles have been intense. It's only the grace of Jesus that has enabled us to hold our heads high in those times.

Sometimes the battles have been personal. We are flesh and blood. We are not perfect. There are times we think we are farther along in our walk with the Lord, when suddenly someone does something or says something that reveals that our old nature still lurks behind some closed door. That old nature stinks, by the way; it's rotting and rotten. My old tennis shoes smell better!

We are looking forward to this time of rest. Our supervisor told us today to be sure to do just that. He told us to rest, to love on our two daughters living stateside, and to do all we could to not be thinking on this ministry we are leaving behind.

We are looking forward to writing a new chapter in our next life volume. The pages are clean, the pen is in the hand of a ready writer. What will it say? I don't know, because I don't know what the future holds; but I know who holds the future, as the song says!

The next time I write, I will be somewhere in southern America.

Peace! Kevin Shearer


Frank (or Chip) said...

Rest. Sounds like a good idea, Kevin. Breathe deep, as the air where you are going has to be cleaner than Lima's.


The Phams said...

Thanks for this blog:

I appreciate what you said about your job changing, but that you are for God's pleasure and it must've pleased him to change it. That speaks to my heart.

I know what your saying about that OLD nature stinking worse than tennis shoes. I wish I could't relate, but I can.

At any rate, keep blogging in this next season of life. Rest if you can and know that Lima, and us, will be waiting for you when you return.


Kevin, Somewhere in South America said...

REST?? Rest? Yeah, it's a good idea. It will have to happen, too. Meanwhile, there is much to be accomplished. And yes, the air is much cleaner. Today it is sunny and 65. The best part? I don't hear any vehicles out there! No busses to rumble and shake the house; no horn-blowing taxi drivers. Nothing of the sort! It's kind of nice...

Peace - KDS

Rick said...

Kevin, Pam and Melissa,

I hope that God uses you greatly in the US. I'm just sorry that we won't be able to see you before you go. I don't know what you all have been going through but we have prayed for you and we will continue to do so.

We love you guys dearly.

God bless,

Rick, Kelly, Elijah, Olivia and Gabriela Martinez

Kevin, Somewhere in South America said...

Rick and Kelly,

It's great to have friends like you. I know you are praying for us. I know you are praying for the work we left undone. I will do my best to be back as quickly as we get our 3 girls settled into whatever plans God has led them to.

if you need something from us on this end, you know how to get in touch.

Have a great day,


Anonymous said...

I have THE best dad in the WHOLE world and I am BEYOND happy that he is close to me for the next few months. :) Love you, Dad.

Kevin, Somewhere in South America said...

Well, beloved daughter, I am also exceptionally joyful to be close to you. It will be a great opportunity to have some real God-moments that come with Dad-Daughter contact. Be good! And...watch out for SIN!