This past month has been way too busy, with classes, volunteer obligations and a bit part in the Sound of Music at my church, followed by a mission trip to Cuba from which we returned earlier this week. Now I find myself in the grudging stage of knowing I need to return to my life here, but resisting leaving behind the people and the memories of our trip to Cuba. The mission on this trip was to demonstrate to our Christian sisters and brothers in Cuba by our presence that they have not been forgotten.
It was not easy to obtain the required religious license from our government to travel there, and as that license expires the end of this month I don't know if I'll ever have the chance to see these new friends in this life again. I hope so. For in Cuba I saw once again the churches aflame with the Holy Spirit as they proclaim God's kingdom in the midst of poverty, both physical and spiritual.
A familiar Bible text from the prophet Joel was on the lectionary while we were there, and I realized I was seeing it lived out before my eyes, for God's spirit has been poured upon them and their sons and daughters are proclaiming God's message, their old people are dreaming of the kingdom and their young people are seeing visions of a future blessed by God. Once again, as at the end of my first trip to Cuba a year and a half ago, my heart wants to be both there and here at home.
Please pray for all of those Christians who proclaim the reason for the hope they have by their lives and their actions, as the pastor preached last Sunday at the Presbyterian church we attended in Havana. We proclaimed that hope by our presence worshipping and sharing communion together, those of us from the U.S. and the Cubans. I pray one day soon we will be free to travel easily from one country to the other. I want them to come and share their remarkable faith with my fellow Christians here, and I want to be able to return and see the people I have come to know and to love.
Grace and Peace,