We are still just one week into the "real" beginning of our work here in Las Vegas and already the reality of spiritual warfare has been rubbed in our noses by the enemy. After two encouraging days spent together with my partner, Eric Phillips, looking for potential places for worship and praying about Christ's vision for this city we both took small blows to our stomachs last night and early this morning.
On Monday Eric and Annette discovered a large boil like "thing" on the bottom of their newborn. Yesterday it popped hours before their appointment with a pediatrician. The doctor's diagnosis is a staph infection. This has been no fun for Annette, who like any mother, finds herself fighting against the inclination to fear and despair, especially while still feeling the full force of transition in every aspect of their lives.
This morning my doorbell rang at 6:20. You and I both know that when someone is at the door that early there is usually something wrong, so I raced downstairs to answer it. My neighbor and his daughter were standing there to tell me that someone had broken into both of my cars and that the same someone had broken into their cars as well. Thankfully our garage door opener wasn't left inside the cars, nor anything else of value besides a few of our favorite CD's. The downside is how an event like this plays with your mind. Immediately you start to ask yourself questions about the security of your family and whether or not this is the ideal place to begin our ministry here. Pretty soon, though, I realized that this was another move from the enemy to try and move us off center, to try and discourage us from moving forward in the mission.
The reality for Christians is that Jesus calls us all into difficult situations. We all find ourselves entering the edge of danger. But I am reminded this morning that the command to go into all the earth to make disciples (Mt. 28:19) is followed by Jesus' exclamation that all authority on heaven and earth has been given to him (Mt. 28:18). It is this mighty and all-powerful, mission-commissioning Jesus that also said, "And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age."