Thursday, June 21, 2007

Central Asia 2007

This was an amazing trip! Ten of us from Maysville Baptist went to Central Asia. We had two primary purposes in going -- one, sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ and the other, ministering to our missionaries already there.

The first part of our trip we spent at a business called Compass where we participated in conversation groups. Basically, students from the local university come in to practice their English and to meet real live Americans. Our group's goal there was to make friends, enjoy conversations, and to be real about who we are in Christ. Everyone in the group was able to share the gospel at least once. We drank gallons of coffee, laughed, and used lots of big hand gestures to get our point across! Several of the nationals had handheld computer dictionaries that they'd use to look up what they wanted to say, or to figure out what in the world we were saying! One young engaged couple was particulary eager to hear about Jesus. He kept telling our pastor, Brian, "I'll come back tomorrow and you can tell me more about Jesus." One of the missionaries made sure Brian had a Bible to give to the young man. Today I got an e-mail saying that on Sunday the young couple both trusted Christ as Savior of their lives. It is absolutely amazing to see God at work!

The second part of our trip was spent leading a retreat for the missionary families. Our pastor and minister of music led the conference for the adults, three others did an intense Bible study with the seven youth, and the other five led VBS for the fourteen children. I was part of the VBS team, of course, doing the Bible story. We also had crafts, music, games, and snacks. The kids had a great time with the Western/cowboy theme and they especially enjoyed the crafts and the music.

Of course, the flights were long and the layovers decidedly not fun. The showers were sometimes cold. But every little problem that came up is nothing compared to the rejoicing in heaven and earth over the two who have been saved. I know that there were many seeds planted and watered, and I look forward to hearing from the missionaries about how God is continuing to move and allowing them to be a part of the harvest.

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