4:05 PM, Thursday, 6/18/98

Well, the trip is underway. I can hardly believe the encouragement that having Mom, Dad, and so many people from church at the departure gate in Indy was. I think I almost forgot my nervousness for a few minutes.

On the flight to Chicago, I sat by a nice man named Andy. He is a banker in the northern suburbs of Chicago and was in Indy for business. It was the first trip I’ve really been able to get to know the person next to me. He thought that my missions trip was a great opportunity, and gave me some nice advice for when we arrived in Chicago. As we came near lake Michigan, Andy pointed out a lot of the sights that I’ve never seen before, at least not from the air! We saw Gary, IN, the big skyscrapers of downtown, and even the place where the Bulls and Bears play (He had been to one of the games where the Bulls lost just last Friday). As we landed and parked, I found myself talking about how great it was to have my church behind me on this and ended up finding out that he was a Catholic. He was a really nice man and it was neat seeing how, if I took the time to develop a relationship with the man, God could direct it anywhere He wants. I was able to leave him a tract and he said he’d be happy to read it

Probably what fascinated me most about this was what happened after we got off the plane. Andy had already told me how to get around O’Hare, but after we got off the plane, he turned around looking for me, said my name, and offered to walk with me through the airport I still remember how great it felt to know Andy didn’t see me just as another person, but that he really wanted to help, even after our flight was over. He gave more advice on getting to the international terminal and as we got to the place where we went our different ways, he wished me luck and said it had been nice meeting me. I think he really meant it; I know I did.

I am aware once again that, as one of my profs told me, it’s not the breadth of your ministry that matters, but the depth of your message. People aren’t just for preaching at, but they deserve the same love, patience, and caring grace that God had for me before I came to know Him.