"Take my yoke upon you...my yoke is easy and my burden is light." St. Matthew
I think Americans get confused by the idea of freedom. We think freedom simply means being free from any obligations or work. But to be truly free is to find a worthy yoke to be harnessed to so that one feels life is worthwhile!
It was good to be away, and good to be free from the obligations of ministry for a time. Yet, I know too much of a good thing turns into a bad thing. It was nice to be free, but I think it is nicer to be free tied to Jesus Christ, the true yoke of life. For it is this yoke that makes life worth living - to give your life away for some greater cause than yourself is our definition of freedom! That's why we go on mission trips and we feel strangely more free than if we stayed home; that's why the burden of minstry is strangely easy because it lifts you out of depressing boredom into the joyful paradoxical truth that by giving your life away you find life returning to you; that's why I am back for another year of service!
So its good to be back for my 26/27th year here, yoked to Jesus Christ, my Lord!