Friday, June 29, 2012

Szabad Napok...Free Days!

This week I've had several free days.  The week started with taking the van we used last week back to another city about four hours away.  I stayed with another missionary couple (who are actually the sister and brother-in-law of Adel) and their family.  It was a great time of relaxation and fellowship. 
With Adel's nephew in the mountains outside Brasov

On Tuesday, I went with Adel's brother-in-law, Otto, to buy a car.  What a great blessing it was to have the money I needed and have some left over as well.   I'm already enjoying the car a lot!

Today, I bought some things for my apartment here.  I was able to get a good price on some kitchen cabinets and a desk. Those things will be delivered tomorrow morning. I'm including some "before" pictures of the apartment, and I'll take some more after everything is set up.

View from the doorway coming in.  As you can see, there's a lot of "stuff" to be moved or stored
View into the kitchen from the hallway

Left side of the kitchen (that's the stove in the lower's being used as a "counter" now. :))

Right side of the kitchen


Living room/Office (and where I'm sleeping  for the summer)

View from the other side of the living room


Baptism in Glodeni

Last week I had a great time serving with a team from England in a small village called Glodeni.  We had meetings for the children in the afternoons and evangelism services in the evenings.  I have worked with many of these kids before in another camp, so it was good to reconnect with them.  On Wednesday night, we had a church meeting to vote on two new members for the church.  This work is fairly new and small, so these two members doubled the size of the actual church membership!  It was great to hear their testimonies and see how God has worked in their lives.  On Sunday we had a baptism service for these two men.  This was in the tent and it was in a portable baptistry.  It was a great experience...very moving to experience.  My friend Zozo also shared a part of his story and how his family has been changed.  He is a teacher and has worked with many students in that village.  Many of them were there, along with their parents.  All in all, it was an amazing day.
Attila with the two new church members before the baptism

Besides reconnecting with some of the kids from previous camps, I also made a new friend.  His name is Zoltan and we became fast friends... inseparable!  He is coming to camp, along with many other from this village, later in the summer.  I'm already praying that it will be a blessed time with them.
My new friend, Zoltan

Also, some of you have heard about my "adopted son" Jeno.  Well, it was a great reunion with him.  It was also great to see him serving in the ministry.  He played the guitar for the children's meetings and also helped keep the kids focused during the meetings.  It was great to serve along-side him for the first time.  

Thanks for your prayers!  More pictures to come shortly!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

How many people does it take to put up a tent?

Well, normally, it wouldn't take very many.  However, today we put up a big tent in one of the gypsy villages for evening services tonight through this weekend.  

To answer the took five British guys, three Hungarian guys, lots of gypsy children, and this American!  It was a big job (I have a new respect for traveling circus workers).  We started a little after 9 in the morning and by 2:00 (when we stopped for lunch) we were almost done.  With a little work in the afternoon, it was finally finished.  I never knew it would take so much work to put up a tent!

It's been a great first week on the ground here in Romania.  VERY BUSY, but VERY GOOD!  Just to give you a quick run down of the last couple of days:

Yesterday (Wednesday): I went to the airport at 4:00 in the morning with two guys from the British team that is here.  I came back, rested for an hour, and went back to Targu Mures (which is about 30-45 minutes away) with a gypsy couple who needed to go to the doctor.  When I got back, it was time for lunch with the group from England.  After lunch we headed to Glodeni/Sarpatak for a children's meeting.  This was from 3:00-6:30, and included stories, crafts, and games.  After a quick supper in a nearby village, we returned for an evangelism meeting at 8:00.  After that, there was a church business meeting to decide if two men were ready to join the church.  They both shared their testimony with us and were then voted into the church.  By this time, it was after 10:00.  I went home with Attila (the pastor here) to discuss some business about the coming weeks, and eventually returned home after 11:00.  

Today (Thursday): We started the day with building the tent.  We had the same children's meeting in the afternoon from 3:00-6:30, dinner, and an evangelism meeting.  After the meeting tonight, I went with Apalina (another gypsy village) to see a man about a horse...literally.  This man needed a ride to meet someone about some horse business.  While we were there (keep in mind, this was after 10:00) the street was ALIVE!  Everyone was out on the street.  This is one of the things I love about going there.  It's so good to meet with the people just out on the street.  I had a few good conversations even in the short time we were there.  I arrived home just a little while ago, and it's now 11:40.

Whew!  It's been a long two days, but it sure has been great!  I promise some pictures are to come, as well as a video of the apartment where I'm living.  I'm just too tired to do it tonight!

Friday, June 15, 2012

God will "supply all you need...just in time."

This message comes from a quote from Corrie Ten Boom.  It was shared with me by my mom who heard it from a dear friend (and former colleague of mine).  Here is the full passage:

"When I was a little girl, " I said, "I went to my father and said, "Daddy, I am afraid that I will never be strong enough to be a martyr for Jesus Christ." 

"Tell me," said Father, "When you take a train trip to Amsterdam, when do I give you the money for the ticket? Three weeks before?" 

"No, Daddy, you give me the money for the ticket just before we get on the train."

"That is right," my father said, "and so it is with God's strength. Our Father in Heaven knows when you will need the strength to be a martyr for Jesus Christ. He will supply all you need – just in time…"

This little passage has meant a lot to me in the last few days.  I don't know that I'll ever face some of the questions that Corrie Ten Boom faced, especially about having to be a martyr for my faith in Jesus Christ.  However, there have been unknowns in my life...places where it would have been easy to not trust and stay in the comfortable places.  I have prayed often for the Lord to keep me from giving in to a comfortable life of the known if He has other plans for me.

So just a few specific examples of how this has actually played out in my life just this week:
  • I have not been able to find someone to stay in my house this summer while I'm gone and in to October.  I had given up on it, just trusting that God would provide other means.  Well, just as I was "needing the ticket for the train" (also known as Tuesday before I left), this was taken care of.
  • On a smaller, but equally amazing note, I was needing to get a document signed and witnessed by two people on Wednesday (the day I flew out).  I actually needed to get it notarized, but I "knew" there would be no time for that.  I wasn't trusting God for the "ticket".  As I was at the airport, we asked at the information booth, and the lady not only witnessed the signing of the document...she was a notary and she put her official seal on it.  God provided...just in time.
I know I will still fail with this in the future, but God is teaching me more and more to trust in Him to provide for the things I need.  Sometimes this will be in enough time for me to be comfortable with the decision.  Sometimes it will be "just in time" in order that I will continue to put my trust only in Him and not in myself.

Here's one final quote from Corrie Ten Boom for this post.  Thanks everyone for your prayers!
“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.”

― Corrie ten Boom

Monday, June 4, 2012

A new adventure among old friends

In a week and a half, I'll be leaving to head back to Romania.  This will be the third summer in a row that I have  been in Romania.  However, this journey started much farther back.  This summer is the start of a new adventure that began in 1998.  That was the year I took my first overseas mission trip to Romania.  It was also the start of God's calling on my life to work in that country.  From that first summer, Romania has been on my heart.  I never knew it would take more that 10 years for me to get back there, but in 2010 I was able to go with some family friends to work at a Gypsy camp for two weeks.  The amazing thing was that this camp, while in Romania, was working with primarily Hungarian speaking Gypsies.  I lived in Hungary for three years and, while there, started to learn Hungarian.  Those language classes came to good use during those two weeks of camp.  During those two weeks, I began to see how God might be calling me back to Romania.  After two years of praying and seeking, it is finally time for this adventure to start full time.  I can't wait to see where it takes me, and I look forward to sharing it with you!