Jun 28


I finally got the new apartment wired for internet. I’ve had access on my phone, but it has been difficult to do much, especially since my hotspot wouldn’t work. But this past Wednesday Togo Telecom finally came and ran fibre to the apartment and installed the Nokia modem and I’m back on-line.

We had been waiting on the electric company to increase the capacity to the apartment because the original installation didn’t provide enough power for the AC units. The owner had requested and given money for the increase, but nothing was happening, so the head pastor here called a friend who works in the government, who called a manager at the electricity company, who then immediately sent a technician with the pastor to get things sorted out.

The internet installation was dragging on for weeks as well. Finally the head pastor pulled some strings (or threatened to) and got us moved up the queue for installation.

It’s good to have friend in high places! It’s good to be connected.

I shared the story of the electricity in a sermon I preached at two churches here. I pointed out, however, that every believer in Jesus has access to Someone much higher than someone in the national government. We have access to God Almighty Himself! “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God” Romans 5:1-2. Through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, you have obtain access to the grace of God.

It is good to be connected. Through Jesus’s death and resurrection, we have a Friend in the highest place of all. Thanks be to God that He has reconnected us to Himself.

Feb 26

Extreme Culture Shock

Culture Shock is something one can experience when visiting a foreign country. Often there are different expectations, different ways of communicating, different ways of doing things, different levels of comfort, and different levels cleanliness and hygiene. These differences can lead to feelings of unease, discomfort, even anxiety and frustration.

When driving on the dusty, bouncy, dirt roads of India, I miss the clean, paved roadways of the States. When my feet are devoured by mosquitos and gnats and I worry about malaria, chikungunya, and dengue fever, I begin to think that the mosquitos of Minnesota really weren’t that bad.

But the occasional and minor discomforts I may experience here do not compare to what our Lord and Savior Jesus experienced. Think of what He did! Jesus,

6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Philippians 2:6-8

Although Jesus was God, He left the glory of heaven to become flesh and dwell among us in this dirty, smelly, sin-corrupted world. We cannot even begin to understand how great Jesus’ humiliation was. We cannot comprehend the difference between heaven and here. Talk about culture shock!

But Jesus not only left the comforts of heaven to live here among us sinful people, but He humbled Himself to the point of experiencing something completely foreign to the eternal Son of God: death. And He suffered an ignominious death as a common criminal on a cross.

Jesus did this all for you and for me. He came to live the perfect life of obedience to God the Father than none of us have lived, and He took all of our failures to keep God’s law — all our sins — upon Himself when He died on the cross. By His death and resurrection from the dead, Jesus has taken away your sins and reconciled you to God, so that you have an eternal home in heaven and His perfect life here on earth is credited to your account.

This is why Jesus “did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.” Rejoice in the salvation that Jesus has accomplished for you at such great cost and suffering.