February 20 is here and we only have 10 more days in Serbia. There are moments it feels like I’ve been here for years and other moments when it feels like I just arrived. I’ll try to make this a short entry.
I want to share an update about my friend Suza. I’ve had two one-to-one cafe times with her. The first one about a week ago actually went to a deeper level. That can be hard when your primary means of understanding one another is the Serbian/English dictionary sitting between you. Or the use of pen, paper and drawing to illustrate a point (I’m not an artist, so that makes it quite humorous!). God definitely fills in the communication holes. I told Suza that I saw a wall between her and God. That something blocked her relationship with Him. She said she couldn’t recognize God’s voice in her life. I challenged her to write down questions she has for God and bring them the next time we met.
From previous conversations I’ve had with her through a translator I found out about some areas in her life that aren’t right with God. I saw these areas as the wall, but she didn’t make the connection in our conversation, so I didn’t press them.
Yesterday we met for our second one-to-one. Recently a youth group from another city in Serbia came and led an evangelism training seminar called Alpha Course with this youth group in Leskovac. I asked Suza about it and what she had learned from that time. Then I found out just how much God has been doing in her heart. She broke up with her boyfriend on Friday, a guy that she didn’t need to be dating. She knew she needed to get right with God and I see her beginning to make choices that honor God. I asked her about the wall I saw before, and she said that it was gone. She’s built friendships with some students from this other youth group and hopes to visit them sometime soon.
The consistent words out of my mouth yesterday were, “Wow! I’m so excited for you!” Suza has received God’s fresh breath of life and you can actually see a difference in how she relates to people and in her genuineness. While I can’t say all the work that needs to be done here will be accomplished by March 2, I can say that we have been a part of what God is doing and will continue to do in the lives here.
you can pray
- Perseverance: the last stretch is always the most challenging, yet can also be the most exhilarating.
- Thursday nights are discipleship nights for this youth group; pray that God will continue to move in their hearts, and He will give us creativity in how to accomplish what needs to happen in our last two Thursday nights
- For Irene (who works at the Internet cafe) and my relationship with her.
- Relationships among our team. As we get closer to the end I find there is more tension and stress in our relationships.
- My future. I need to find a job when I return to the Springs. (Any ideas?)I hope to freelance write as well. Pray God will open those opportunities for that to be a part of my income.
- My next steps with GEM. Pray that I’ll know that I know that I know that working alongside GEM is the right direction. I’ll meet with a few GEM missionaries in Vienna before I leave.
NOTE: March 1 is the last day for Pulpit Rock to accept your support checks. Please don’t send checks to the church following that date. If you’d like to continue monthly support please e-mail me and I’ll send you my new mailing address. I can’t offer you tax-deductible donations until I figure out my next step (hopefully with GEM). I’ll keep you posted in that process. Thanks again for all your support!
I can’t wait to see some of your faces as I arrive back in the States soon!!