Back to Tirana

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFNLbAs3KAU

Just like in Sofia last year (see Our Last Night in Sofia), Angie and I were the two remaining teammates after prayer walking in the capitals.  And just like last year, we returned to fly out of the city that we had flown into.  So once again, we enjoyed an evening together.  Angie is the teammate that I have nicknamed Snoopy (see Puppies and Clowns and Rainbows and Joybringers in Kosovo) because of the joyful dance she does that reminds me of how Snoopy dances in the Charlie Brown specials.  Angie has the most beautiful smile—one that really overflows with joy, and she laughs easily and often.  So she is a pleasant person and a lots of fun to be with.

We had a lovely dinner together, and early this morning I had a beautiful worship session, enjoying the closeness of my Father.

Our time in Kosovo had not been without its difficulties.  I haven’t written about these because they are not for the public, but also because I don’t know the whole story from both sides.  All I can say is that there was a teammate who became offended with another teammate, and because of this, we lost our unity.  Both sides are convinced that they are right—and I can’t say that either side is completely right or completely wrong.  But I have seen this kind of subtle attack of the enemy, causing division and disunity.  The loss of unity was felt by all of us, with the most sensitive spilling over in tears.  The rift has been the central focus of my prayers ever since I became aware of it.

I have been on both sides of this issue, so I know how each party feels.  As the offended person, you feel betrayed, and even righteously angry because of the damage done to your ministry.  As the offender, you need to understand how you have hurt the other person without meaning to hurt.  Whenever this kind of thing happens, whether we are the offender or the offended party, we need to be willing to love the other person enough to really try and see things through their eyes.  Both parties need to love enough to extend grace (unmerited favor!) to the other person because Jesus extended grace to you.  Situations like this can easily turn ugly without real, sacrificial love and grace.

The two parties took the same transportation from Pristina, so I hope and pray that they were able to talk it out and restore the relationship.

So with this sad situation in our last days, Angie and I bolstered ourselves and each other in love, compassion, and laughter.  And in the end, I felt encouraged, though I will continue to pray until I hear how things were resolved.  No matter how things turn out, I know that God is bigger than our egos, our hurt feelings, our insensitivity, and our big mouths.  His will will prevail, and His purposes will be accomplished, even despite ourselves.  God is good!

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