I have been travelling the world for forty years, initially while serving in the Merchant Navy, and since then through frequent business trips. I am writing this blog in the air en-route to Moscow, a city I have never visited before. Am I excited about the prospect? Not really. I’d rather be at home with my family. Those who think that travelling the world on business is some kind of delightful perk are sadly mistaken. Yes, there are high points, but the challenges and hassles associated with travel are many. Generally, I leave home with an ‘I don’t want to go attitude!’
I wonder if the apostle Paul felt the same way. Scripture records some of the challenges and hassles he faced, not least of all being shipwrecked three times. But nothing stopped Paul. He went in obedience to God, not knowing what he might face on the next voyage or in the next town. My brief arrest and interrogation in the then communist East Germany in 1983 pales into insignificance compared with the beatings and imprisonments suffered by Paul.
Sometimes it is good to remember the unseen part that God plays in our daily lives. I recall a trip to Trinidad in August 2005. I really did not want to go. I didn’t want the hassle of changing flights in Barbados, and I certainly did not want to end up perspiring in the sweltering heat of a Trinidadian summer. But when I arrived God put Christian after Christian in my path. I couldn’t believe how He blessed me during that trip and I am certain He will bless me in Moscow. The problem is the same in whatever we face during our daily lives. It is easier to complain about a situation than see a blessing in it.
God is beginning to open my eyes as I look back on the day so far and count the blessings. The pleasant people I have engaged with at the hotel checkout, at the currency exchange, and even when going through airport security. I have just eaten a surprisingly delicious airline meal and the view out of my window is spectacular. Surely this is the day that the Lord has made. I should rejoice and be glad in it! (Psalm 118:24)