It's hard saying goodbye. The people who you work with, live with, fellowship with, worship with- they become like your second family. You don't want to have to say goodbye- but it is part of being a missionary. It seems like you are always saying goodbye.
Well, this trip to Venezuela was a short one- only 3 1/2 weeks. But, I am still very close with the people here. After being away for 6 months, it did not take me long to get back into the flow of life in Maracaibo and feel like I was living here again- only I didn't have my apartment anymore. I felt more like I belong here than as if I were a tourist or a short-term missionary. This is home- at least one of my homes- and the people here are family- as least part of my family. I love being in Maracaibo and I am sad to leave.
As I am writing this (I should be in bed as I have to wake up in 2 hours to go to the airport for my flight), I am spending time with Guita. She will once again have to remain in Venezuela.
So, with tears in my eyes, I say goodbye. However, I can trade in these tears of sorrow for tears of joy. Why? Because I know that God is good. He works out all things for His glory. He wants to wipe away every tear. One day, I will be reunited again with my Venezuelan family- if not in Maracaibo, then in Heaven. I can also rejoice that I will be yet another step closer to my upcoming ministry in the DR. So, although tonight has tears, joy will soon be coming!