in a foreign land

today my family and their friends are gathering to remember and rejoice in the life led by my uncle – r paul creech.

and i am in india

although i wish i could join them, i think there is something fitting in my absence.  my uncle passionately loved the world.  he served many years in places like france, japan and africa.  he seemed uniquely qualified for such work.  a jack of all trades…and master of many.  a servant’s heart, an uncanny ability to take on the cloak of whatever culture he was in and live well within it’s covering.  he was a great husband to my aunt, a wonderful father to his children and a beloved brother to my mother and her sisters.

after years of faithful service, his calling shifted to one country, one state, one city, one church and one family.  though he touched many in that process and embraced them in a new way, his heart forever focused on the spread of The Word and it’s message of hope.  he sought the Father fervently on behalf of his children.  begging for wisdom in raising them up in the way they should go.

he was a gentle servant. a soft-hearted son.  a warrior in body and spirit.

i have watched from a distance as he traded his garment of active physical service for one of physical example.  i have never seen another walk the journey cancer brings quite the way he did.  he was forever grateful, even in his last text to his family, for the smallest things.  finding joy in the morning and strength of heart and character that was unprecedented.

and so as he begins his forever, with family and friends reminiscing, much laughter and a few tears i’m sure (though there were strict instructions that this not be a sad event) i am taking the baton of service and continuing the work of my family

in a foreign land

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6 responses to “in a foreign land

  • Jim Mullen

    Laura – uncle Paul is so proud of you, as are we. Love – Mom and Dad

  • Jeffrey McCurry

    God’s Blessing on You and your Family!

  • Jan Smith

    Laura,
    I am FB friends with your Mom and Dad and we are co-laborers at BGEA is how I got here. A very touching tribute for one I do not know. You are a wonderful family. May your fond memories comfort and always inspire you. You are a blessing.
    In His Love,
    Jan Smith

  • Melissa G. Pickens

    I really enjoyed reading this post about Paul. My name is Melissa, and my husband, Andy Pickens, has worked with your uncle for several years now. Having been a pastor himself for a decade before he and I took on a new ministry, he and Paul often had plenty to share with each other! I’m sorry for Paul’s encounter w/cancer, but thankful in the end, despite what darkness may have other think, it didn’t win because of his life in Christ. It was neat to hear part of your story and read a couple of your other posts. My heart has had a new interest and burden this past year for India since reading a missionary book on the history of the church there and God’s work amidst insurmountable odds due to all the idol worship. Blessings and courage to you as you continue to offer life in a dark world!

  • Crystal

    Thank you for your blog post. What a blessing to know Paul. He was a great man. I love your family. They always make me feel like one of their own. During fall break I was invited to go home with Deborah. It was a joy to be able to spend a lot of time with them all.

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