A Story Needing to Be Told

Phyllis and I have had our departure for Indonesia delayed by three weeks. We were scheduled to return on September 27, but several factors changed that schedule. Nothing serious; just routine documentation.

That could have been disappointing for us, but I learned many years ago that waiting for God’s timing presents unexpected opportunities. Darron Fleming, one of the elders for the Highland Village church of Christ, had made contact with one of the young leaders of a refugee group who was a World Bible School student. He met with them once a couple of weeks ago and asked me along to preach last Sunday. The young man translated from English to the Karenni language.

The younger people in the group of twenty-two who sat on the floor of the apartment where they gathered had lived their entire lives in a refugee camp on the Burma-Thailand border before they were helped by the United Nations to come to the United States.

Darron had to leave early to attend an elder’s meeting. Later, after the sermon was over, I said to the refugees, “Let’s go to the place where our congregation meets for Sunday evening services.” Seven came with us.

Then things started falling into place like pieces of a puzzle. Milton Wilson has been filling in frequently as the congregation is looking for a fulltime minister. He was surprised to see the Burmese visitors at the 6 o’clock service. Three of the refugees work for Milton’s wife, who has a business of her own. As they expressed delight at seeing each other, John Reese was introduced to them as a newly-installed elder for Highland Village. They were excited to learn that John is the director of World Bible School. Also, I had a chance to talk to them about World English School and the opportunity to learn English with the Bible as textbook, since I taught that material once in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.

Phyllis and I are committed to return to Malaysia and Indonesia within the next three weeks even as we praise God to see the coming together of these people today. Only the Lord knows where all of this is heading, but joy and expectation overtook us all on this special Lord’s Day.

Duane Morgan – October 2017

When God Says “NO”!

I asked God to take away my habit.
God said, “No, it is not for me to take away, but for you to give it up!”

I asked God to make my handicapped child whole.
God said, “No, his spirit is whole, his body is only temporary.”

I asked God to grant me patience.
God said, “No, patience is a byproduct of tribulations; it isn’t granted, it is learned.” 
I asked God to give me happiness.
God said, “No, I give you blessings; happiness is up to you.”
I asked God to spare me pain.
God said, “No, suffering draws you apart from worldly cares and brings you closer to me.”

I asked God to make my spirit grow.
God said, “No, you must grow on your own, but I will prune you to make you fruitful.”

I asked God for all things that I might enjoy life.
God said, “No, I will give you life, so that you may enjoy all things.”
I asked God to help me love others as much as he loves me.
God said “Ahhhh, finally you have the idea!”