Thursday, October 03, 2013

Email and Tender Mercies

I recently received a handwritten letter from my missionary son. How times have changed since my missionary days. We don't often communicate with our son via snail mail.

Back in the dim ages when I was a missionary in Norway, I used to get letters from home roughly six to eleven days after they were postmarked. (My mom was very diligent about writing.) On rare occasion letters came more quickly or more slowly.

We would write back and forth. But by the time one party responded to a query by the other party, two, three, or even four weeks had passed. It was difficult to remember what had been asked.

It's not like that now. Once each week we email back and forth with our son for about an hour, discussing all kinds of things. Responses are rapid. I usually only have to remember what I asked a couple of minutes earlier. I have found myself getting impatient if my son fails respond within a minute or two.

A couple of days ago I got an email from a guy that (I now realize) lives in my son's mission. He said that my son was having dinner with his family that evening. He asked if I remembered him from when we both served as missionaries in Norway many years ago.

What a pleasant surprise. While the miracle of modern technology makes weekly communication with my son half a world away a breeze, it's always nice to connect with somebody else that has had personal contact with my son 'over there.' It's refreshing to get a third party perspective on how he is doing.

This particular communication had the added benefit of renewing an old acquaintance. How marvelous. I am thankful for tender mercies.

No comments: