Terminals (March 27)

I have spent 17 of the last 20 hours on airplanes. I have passed through three terminals - Minneapolis, Amsterdam and Entebbe. Walking through those terminals I have seen travelers, shuffling toward their gates like zombies. Travelers of differing colors, ages, shapes, expressions, ethnicities and styles of dress. Maybe "terminal" is the wrong word. Yes it is where a flight ends. But it is not the end of the journey for travelers. I have never met anyone whose destination was an airport terminal. Terminals are the end of the road for the aircraft, but not for the people traveling. They are each "going somewhere."  The man next to me is traveling to Uganda, not to visit the Entebbe terminal but to visit cocoa crop farmers. He buys bulk quantities of cocoa and exports them. He is en route to a destination, not merely arriving at a terminal. Knowing your destination affects how you travel. I knew it would take me 17 hours of flying to reach my destination. I packed accordingly. I ate and prepared accordingly. I have even arranged my awake and asleep times on the flight in line with my destination (Uganda is a nine hour difference in time zone).

Peter reminded early Christians that their destination was the certainty and joy of heaven (1 Peter 1:5). But en route, they need to be prepared for the journey through this life - suffering trials, testing of the genuineness of their faith (1 Peter 1:7-9). He urged them and us to prepare for the journey by staying alert, not conforming to evil desires, loving deeply (1 Peter 1:22, 4:7-8), to live well - doing good and serving God's will, even to handle suffering well in light of our destination. In the future is the unfading crown of glory (1 Peter 5:4) and along this journey Peter promises that the Lord will strengthen us (1 Peter 5:10).

This life is an adventure, a blend of joys and griefs, of hopes and setbacks. But this life is not the terminal. No one gets out of this life alive. We are all "en route," travelers through this life on earth. And then the end of the journey - not a terminal, but arrival at your destination. At the airports cars pull up, people greet weary travelers with warm hugs and "welcome home." In 12 days I will arrive at the Minneapolis terminal. I will greet my wife. The joy of again being together will be ours to savor.

Live like someone who knows they are passing through, who knows your final destination, and is expectant of all the joy that arrival will include as faith turns to sight, and weary faith travelers are welcomed home by the Lord Himself.

Good night from Entebbe.

- Pastor Paul

2 comments (Add your own)

1. Linda Johnson wrote:
Praise God for your safe arrival! Tim and I talked of your long trip numbers of times today and have been praying for you, picturing you kind of "folded up" in an airplane seat for such a long trip. We'll be watching and praying--blessings in Christ!

Mon, March 27, 2017 @ 8:31 PM

2. Kathy wrote:
You are such an excellent communicator, Pastor Paul. I have often thought that terminals are a place of emotions. Often people are travelling from or to home. What a great reminder that truly, in this life, we are just a passing through. God bless you.

Tue, March 28, 2017 @ 2:55 PM

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