It has been a long time, but I am back stronger than ever. I recently came home a few days ago from a two week long mission trip to Uganda that was particularly amazing in a sense that God did tremendous things yet even more particularly cautious in the sense that I saw, heard, and experienced some pretty gnarly things. I will dive more into those things as I share little by little of what happened in distinct post segments. As you can see, today is about our flight from LAX to Dubai, which was uneventful and uncharacteristically awful in my opinion. Why? Because as the anticipation for the trip mounted, the 17 hour long trip felt like 34 hours altogether... double the amount of time. Not what I was hoping for, but the feeling transformed into joyful abandon once we landed in Dubai. Now, I will head into the specifics of the trip from my perspective (and I will only give the first name of my team members to respect their privacy..... we have three Dave's so I will give the first letter of their last name).
The flight began at 4:45 pm PT from Los Angeles International Airport. I was on the right side of the plane squashed in the middle beside Janice and Sam. Sam had the perfect window seat and Janice had the aisle seat. I didn't really care because we were in this for the long run. Seventeen hours is a very long time. All I remember of the flight is I watched two movies.... Wreck it Ralph and The Hobbit, prayed a lot, slept for a few hours in half hour intervals here and there, ate Emirates airline food (really was not that bad), played Who wants to be a millionaire toward the ending of the flight, read my Bible, and listened to a few David Platt sermons from his Secret Church on the cross and suffering. And F-I-N-A-L-L-Y, we landed in Dubai at 7:55 pm Dubai time on Sunday April 7th, which would have been 8:55 am PT on the West Coast in America. Though, what really stood out during the entire airline flight that I will never forgot was a quote from one of the David Platt sermons I listened to!! It stuck out to me like gum stuck on the bottom of someone's shoe. I will end with it...
"The Cross of Christ is the key to understanding all suffering. Suffering was planned for Good Friday. The reason we have suffering in the world has everything to do with Good Friday. Everything in all history including suffering was planned for Good Friday and ultimately points to Good Friday. Everything before the cross points forward to it, everything since the cross points back to it, everything that will last was purchased on it, and everything that matters hinges on the cross. The cross is the key to understanding suffering."
~ David Platt
P.S. This will reign heavily true in the days ahead for me, which is why I have not forgotten it.