“… that thy days may be long…” -Yahweh to Moses, Exodus 20
“Dude, But that was the Old Testament. You’re On A Mission…”
“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.” -Jesus of Nazareth to His Disciples, Matthew 10
And so I left anyway for South Korea
There I was, in LAX Airport headed to Seoul, South Korea for what I thought would be at least 3 months, my Tourist Visa expiry, to the rest of my life as a Missionary to those who were as I was when I was last there, Servicemen and women in the US Military, Bar Hoppers in the Clubs, to the Club Girls trapped in never ending cycles of Prostitution and alcohol/drug addiction and anyone else I could reach as I helped the local churches of my particular denomination Build the Church and Equip the Saints to know God and know His Word.
Graduation to the ‘Big Time’ Missions
For the previous 5 and a half years or so, I had ‘cut my teeth’ on a different Mission Field, the Inner Cities of the Phoenix area, working with kids and young adults in the streets and neighborhoods ‘infested’ with Gangs, Drugs and Poverty. I was not a Vocational Minister but instead, I worked a regular job and did the Mission in my free time. This would be different.
A Snap Shot of Stolen Time
I had driven to LA with G and C, my best friends on the earth at the time. They were getting my car when the plane took off. Going up the concourse to the Boarding Gate, C noticed a small stand with cards and balloons. That’s the first time it dawned on me that I was leaving my Mom, perhaps never to see her or my Dad again for a long while, on Mother’s Day 1996.
It hadn’t even entered my mind until that moment that it was Mother’s Day 1996. I was sacrificing Mother’s Day 1996 to the Mission Field.
(this is where I would have posted the Picture, but won’t)
We thought it was very Heroic, but took a picture of me holding some balloons and a card from the shop, balloons and cards that we immediately returned after the picture was taken, so that G and C could take it to my Mom for Mother’s Day 1996 and show her how much of an Honorable and Godly Man her son was and how much I loved her…
… by leaving her to go On Mission to love Someone Else with my presence that I withheld from Her on Mother’s Day 1996
Constant Reminder of Dishonor
I can never get that Mother’s Day 1996 back. Mom passed Four years ago last month on the thirteenth, three years after Dad. But I have that Picture on my bookshelf of how I chose The Mission and Jesus over my own Mom on Mother’s Day 1996. We miss her. I love you mom and I’m sorry for all the times I was not there when I should have been. I loved my God, Jesus and other people’s Family more than I loved my own. My Devotion and Mission stole me from my own Mother on the very day she should have been most honored.
My Mother’s Day Regret.