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Lugger

clip_image002Well… the “fork experiment” was conducted… and declared a flop. One of two conclusions has to be made. Either our people are very considerate or they don’t value stainless steel forks! Considering the fact that the desert table was empty by the time I went to get some cake, I’m going to assume it was the latter.  I do love my brothers and sisters and try to give them a good example to follow… but how do I get some cake?  :)

We had another picnic yesterday, (I do love church picnics). We try to have a picnic or church-lunch once a month, but I would be quite willing to have one every week.  Artyom, a unique young man with an alcoholic father and a love for God “passed through the waters” on Sunday - hence the celebratory picnic. His Grandmother started attending our church a couple of years ago at about the same time he started going to youth group and kids club and hanging out with Shane and Jemi. In answer to a question about changes in his life that was posed to him after he shared his testimony, he said that a big change had been that he had lost most of his friends when his priorities and standards had changed. What has he gained?  Untold riches!  May God grow his young faith and bless him.

We are two weeks out from the week-long summer camp we run each year. We’ve done it so many years now that we’re like a well-oiled machine leading up to it. Shane and Jemi do the majority of prep and set-up. I do little more than act as a driver and lugger for Pris as we do the shopping for the kitchen for the week… and then as a boat driver during the week. Pris is chief of the kitchen and even though everyone serves in the kitchen a couple of times during the week, she is well-ready to come home at the end of the week. We are again expecting to be maxing out at 120 people… and as always, my prayers are filled with requests for safety and a God-honoring week.

clip_image004The rehab ministry is full of challenges, but generally going well. Later today, we will have another lady join us fresh out of prison. We don’t have that much info on her yet, but by the looks of her, she’s an alcoholic in her 40’s. It’s pretty special seeing Marie, at 21 years of age, leading and loving these ladies who are twice and even three times her age. God’s Word works powerful through the life of the one who wields it with respect and who has a love for the Author of that Book. 

For those interested in the ongoing conflict here:

We occasionally see tanks or APC’s on the roads and soldiers in their uniforms, but by and large, the war is a muted one. Men keep dying and buildings keep on being blown up, but we don’t hear of any progress towards peace. Resentment towards the rebels and Russia is still relatively passive, and will remain this way unless they make another big attack in which many Ukrainian men are killed. I think that even if the east and Crimea were to again become a part of Ukraine, this generation will sense this resentment at those on the opposite side.   It’s a strange, strange war with no end in sight.

clip_image006Over the week-end, six of our men went away for teaching on eldership – 9 hours of lectures during which no one fell asleep… it was a really good time. (On our break, we walked through the central market in Kiev.  My head shuts down the yearning I feel for a mango whenever I go there and pass the exotic fruit sellers!)  Anyway, I trust that soon, we will again have elders in our church from amongst these men and that God will give wisdom as to the timing. 

Today, we ordered a heap of books to do more parent-training courses.  As I looked at the order and reviewed a few of the videos, I was impressed again with the important principles that we believe and teach parents to use.  We’ve found that some parents are so set in their ways and beliefs that they basically get nothing from doing the course.  Most, however, appreciate and use the wisdom contained therein and see good fruit in their lives.  We occasionally are reminded of what happens when child-centered parenting is practiced… and it sure gives glory to the enemies of peace, joy and light!  God reveals many useful truths – it’s our responsibility to practice them.

 

May you be enjoying the privilege of serving our Mighty God!

 

P.S.  Lugger – one who lugs things around.