We just put the children to sleep. It's 10:00 p.m. The first full day of our temporary stay, pre-official start, in Las Vegas is behind us. Many of you know that we were invited to stay in the home of some new friends who worship here with the Spring Meadows Church family. They will be gone for six weeks while we stay at their home, feed the dog, and cut the grass. We were excited for this opportunity because it gives us a chance to be in the city for an extended period of time in order to scope out the housing market, think through what we'll do for schooling, and get to know some of the locals in an informal way.
During this six-week stay we are also trying to spend much time together doing things as a family. We want this initial experience in Las Vegas to be as positive as possible for our children and family as a whole. Today we carried some submarine sandwiches, strawberries and Capri Sun drinks to Mt. Charleston just 35 minutes northwest of the city. We enjoyed temperatures that barely got past 70 degrees at the comfortable elevation of 8243 ft. And what views! We saw portions of God's creation that brought us to a fresh awe of his creative power and genius.
Coming down the mountain we traveled more than 11 miles with the van in neutral. It was just a steady downhill back to the Vegas valley. While we cruised downhill in our over-sized bobsled we experienced incredible chattering in the brakes. I'll be changing out pads and repairing/replacing rotors tomorrow--pray for success!
Beyond the details of what we are doing this week, I wanted to communicate something that struck me during some time of quite thinking yesterday. I had received an email earlier in the day from a friend of our family who is going to support this work through regular prayer and with a three-year financial commitment. I know their circumstances and was amazed that our Lord has moved in them to give toward this work. Here is what I know. They understand the sacrifice that is often involved in the labors of spreading the gospel. They share a conviction that God loves people in Las Vegas. They delight in the opportunity to trust God with all they have. This is tremendously encouraging. This is tremendously humbling. We realized afresh that God is calling many of his people to love others in His name...through us. The sacrifice of others moves us all the more to sacrifice along with them to see God redeem the people of Las Vegas. May God give many more of his people the grace to sacrifice, and may our Lord give us the grace to respond to the sacrifice of others with an increasing willingness to follow Jesus wherever he leads us in this place!