Friday, August 01, 2008

Wrap up

Well, we finally made it home. I'm jetlagged and a little overwhelmed, but I'm grateful for both my life here in Columbus and my life in Asia.

I've been doing mostly family stuff, and I've only stopped in the office briefly to sign papers and greet my co-workers. They've done a great job in my absence, and make all of this possible.

My traveling companions were also fantastic. No drama, no ingratitude, no major freakouts. They demonstrated their love for the kids and staff, for each other and for me. Planning and executing these trips is hard work, but it's much easier and much more fun with teams like the one I took this year. Thanks, guys!

I know I didn't blog much from Thailand; I hope you have been keeping track of my photoblog -- it gives a better picture of what's going on in Thailand than I was able to manage.

In short, our work in Thailand is amazing. It's incredible to think that over just a couple of years, our property at Doi Saket 1 has gone from a few bamboo huts to a modern campus serving 90 kids. I'm also amazed that God has given us the responsibility for two new orphan homes and a farm that serves widows.

It's so clear to me that all of this is due to God's grace and our staff's hard work. Sure, Asia's Hope's board in North America provides funds and logistical structure, but what you see on the ground is a direct result of indigenous efforts and indigenous leadership.

The same, of course, can be said of our ministries in Cambodia. I suppose Satan could take all of this success and tempt us to stand, like Nebuchadnezzar and say, "Look at all my hands have created." But right now, the craziness of that notion is pretty evident to me. My current reaction is, "Wow, God. You're amazing. Are you sure we're the right guys to steward this stuff? I mean, we're not complaining, but, wow. You're really too good to us. Really!"

In fact, each time I return from one of these trips, I'm less proud and more intimidated. There's so much work ahead. There are so many potential pitfalls. So many unanswered questions. So many empty accounts and unpayable bills. If I thought that the success of Asia's Hope depended on me, I'd be one seriously depressed dude. I thank God that he is in charge of this thing, guiding our paths as we acknowledge his kingship and his goodness.

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