Jan 14th 2010

msmile2They say that a picture is worth a 1000 words, so I’ll try to keep this blog to less than 10,000 words.  But just so you know it would be fairly easy to go over 100k on this one — if you include the pictures.  It seems like just yesterday that we got back from Myanmar — but three letters are branded on my heart — ftk.  With some regularity those three letters were spoken amongst the members of our team while we were in Myanmar.

Wrestling with a bit of intestinal yuck — it’s okay, it’s ftk.  Tired of eating rice for breakfast, lunch and dinner — hey it’s ftk.  Nai Nai just peed on you again — no msmile12problem, it’s ftk.  msmile10Abraham jumped on your back and almost tripped you down the stairs —  hey it’s ftk.  Wish you had a bathroom without msmile9cockroaches the size of small rats — hey no problem, it’s ftk.

And what words came to mind whenever we said those three letters?  Ftk — for the kids.  I tell you, there are few things more powerful than to see Jesus in the face of a child who has lost her parents, and has little hope for the future — other than the hope of Jesus and the people who follow him.  Perhaps the one thing more powerful is to see Jesus in the face of those kids — smiling.

Sometimes people ask me, why do you goWhy not just send them money? msmile8Because as much as they need the money, it’s ftk and the kids want presence over presents.

Why go when you might be throwing up sick on a 15 hour plane trip? Because when you touch down and you have your feet on the ground the only thing that brings a smile to your face is bringing to mind a name like Glory, or Susannah, or Rhonda, or Elizabeth or Jacob, or Joshua, or Moses, or Nai Nai, or msmile6Abraham, or Grace and then thinking ftk.

Why go when you could’ve taken a great vacation to Hawaii or bought a bunch of stuff for your house? Because it’s ftk’s, not just the ones in Myanmar, but our own.  We want them to know that the beauty of Jesus in the face of a child in need can exceed the beauty of Hawaii.  We want serving experiences to shape their hearts more than stuff shapes their hearts.

The first time I went to Myanmar, I went to see.  Having seen, the second time I went to Myanmar, I went to serve.  Having served, the third time I went to Myanmar, I went because I wanted my family to see and serve.  The fourth time, we went because we have friends in Myanmar, friends we care about msmile7and ultimately, msmile13it’s ftk.