We love receiving care packages in the mail. Each box promises surprises and memories from home. Often, we find tasty food or canisters of seasoning that we treasure. Sometimes we receive clothes to give away in the village. One time a family sent us a puzzle of a painting by Nathan Greene depicting the Second Coming of Jesus entitled The Blessed Hope. We love Nathan Greene paintings and were thrilled to meet the man in person at an ASI get-together a few years ago.
One Friday night after vespers, we spread the 1000-piece puzzle out on our table and began putting it together with the help of Keren and Orion Lawrence. The puzzle was difficult but fun. There are a host of angels filling the sky and people of every race on the ground with outstretched arms as Jesus comes nearer, encircled by a rainbow. We loved the mental exercise of finding and fitting the pieces together. We spent every free moment at it and had the puzzle completed by Saturday night. We snapped a picture of us next to the puzzle and emailed it to the family, expressing our gratitude for their thoughtful gift. A few weeks later we received another box containing special glue and a brush that allowed us to turn the puzzle into a hangable picture.
Soon the large puzzle picture began to attract the attention of the May River people. They would come in and stare at it, and we would point out the two Papua New Guineans in the lower right-hand side. They ran their fingers over the open graves of the resurrected, and we would talk and talk. So far, these conversations about Christ’s second coming have brought one man to make a commitment to come back to church.
Friends, thank you for your care packages. They can be life-changing.