Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Brightness and Power

EDITOR'S NOTE: This week different team members will be sharing their thoughts, experiences, and impressions from their trip to Cheboksary. The following submission was written by Greg R. following his first full day in Cheboksary.

As we stepped off the train in Cheboksary this morning, one of the local pastors, Pastor Sasha, met us at the bottom of the stairs. His eyes were bright as shook our hands saying, “There is power in this group.”
Later int the day we met and talked with our translator, a 22 year old striking young lady, who started her testimony in good English with a heavy Russian accent. “I was born in a prison," said Zhenya. "My mother left me in a corner to die. ” When asked about her family, she added, “I don’t have a father here on earth, but I have a heavenly Father.” She ended her testimony with, “…and I have a fire in my heart for Jesus.”

The brightness, the power, and the fire that were put in a small Russian city at the end of March, reveal a small inkling of our true and mighty power of God!

Engaging Russia with Texans

God is at work in the Republic of Chuvashia.

I know that you have heard us talk about this before, but our first day back in Cheboksary, the capital of the Chuvash Republic, confirms yet again that God has come here before us and is up to big things in this small city on the Volga River.

After a 13-hour train ride, nine volunteers from First Baptist Church of Allen, Texas got their taste of "the real Russia" today as we spent the day orientating ourselves with the city and our hosts. But even before today God had revealed to the group that this was going to be a special trip. And God has dotted the path with "chance meetings" for the group. Even before arriving in Russia they "just so happened" to be on the plane with an older couple who attended an English Camp in Moscow last February....the same English Camp that was taught FBC Allen team members. So, even a year later, team members were able to renew connections and further relationships with people whom God has put in their path. "We haven't even really started our work yet and I am already changed," said team member Greg.

One of the things that left the largest impression of the day was an informal session where the team got to spend time with their translator, Zhenja, who shared her testimony with them. We will bring you that story later in the week. However, there was not a dry eye among the group when she finished her testimony by telling us how she wanted to become a missionary herself.

God has assembled an amazing team for the task at hand. They all bring different things to the table, but the one thing they have in common is their love for Jesus and a desire to help the people of Russia come to know Jesus as both Saviour and Lord. The seminars being lead by the team begin tomorrow evening. Please pray that their witness would be effective, that people who have been invited will not just attend, but bring friends with them as well.

Thank you for your continued prayers and support. We are excited to be able to share with you just a few of the things that God is doing in Cheboksary.

More tomorrow.

Marc (for all)