I think that intellectually I’m beginning to accept leaving the church and Peter resigning as pastor there. We’re very busy with missions-related things now and it’s nice to have a break from all the work involved in church life. It’s nice to sit through an entire worship service together an not jump up every time there’s a problem. However, emotionally it’s still very hard to attend and not actually be involved.

So, the question is: what do I really miss? Not getting up early on Sunday mornings, surely. Maybe it’s more the sense of belonging. Perhaps, the knowledge that I may not have that sense again in my life – ever again. We may become people of two countries, and belong to neither. Not understanding Japanese fully, but also forgetting our English vocabulary. Not fitting in anywhere. We won’t be able to come back to Canada and simply re-acclimatize. Things will change while we’re gone. This is us essentially giving up all earthly citizenship. The only citizenship which will remain is our citizenship in heaven. Are we willing to do that?

The answer is unequivocally “yes”. The line from the song that has been my soul’s anthem for the last decade comes to mind once more:

“Give me one pure and holy passion,
Give me one magnificent obsession,
Give me one glorious ambition for my life:
To know and follow hard after You.” (by Mark Altrogge)

“Forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Jesus Christ.” (Phil. 3:13b-14)

(Picture source)