A week ago we were commissioned by the Evangelical Covenant Church as long term missionaries to Ecuador at the annual meeting in Kansas City. It was a meaningful service and a beautiful reminder that we do not go alone, but it is through and by the larger church that we are sent. After introductions and affirmation of our faith and our call, all the missionaries moved out into the congregation to be prayed for by those gathered from all corners of the US. We were surrounded by family and friends, former pastors and Covenant World Mission colleagues, members of supporting churches and many new faces as well.
In some ways this process is much like being pregnant. You have these months of life while this baby grows within you to try and wrap your mind around what will eventually be your new reality. The baby showers and birth classes and clothes that no longer fit all help it all to sink in. And prepare as you might to be all ready for what awaits you after those many months, you find that you are, in fact, not prepared at all and yet ready in ways that you never knew you were. Our commissioning night was one such milestone in the process; a step to help it all sink in and feel more real and prepare for a new reality for our family. It is sure to be a reality in which we will never feel fully prepared and yet find we are ready in ways we never knew.
With eyes brimming with tears, I looked up into the faces of those who were with us and for us in that sacred space on that Thursday night. It is a night I will not soon forget and I will be glad to remember that we do not go alone.
( CLICK HERE to watch the commissioning service. The missionary introductions start around minute 15 )