If you’ve followed our blog, you’ve heard us waffle on whether to name a few of the countries in which we are working, since their governments are not so friendly to churches. In Belarus, where we have been the last several days, pastors are occasionally detained by the police; it is difficult for churches to own their buildings, and in a number of other ways their freedom is restricted. But we have been assured that it is alright to name the country and first names of leaders here in our blog. We head to Latvia in just a few hours and are meeting with a pastor couple in half an hour before we head to the airport, but I’ll squeeze in a few reflections on our time here, a smattering of impressions more than a comprehensive summary:
As we came back together a woman burst out, “I am normally shy but I need to tell you about a day recently where I was out in the forest, roaming around like usual, when suddenly all my friends started going wild. It was as if we’d been attacked, but I couldn’t see our attacker! The others all started rushing for the cliff, and something in me really wanted to join them….” She went on to tell the story of the Gerasene Demoniac, from the perspective of one of the pigs. She shared that she had been a drug addict and had seen friends go over the cliff of suicide. It was incredibly moving, and a great privilege to learn her story. I could have sat in a room with her for hours and taught principles and points, and never learned this part of her life. But such is the power of story. I am eager to develop this session and shape it for use in other settings along our journey this year.
That’s it for now—much more to share but we are off to Latvia. We ask your prayers as we gather with graduates of the student ministry there for a retreat on post-college issues: money, relationships, calling and career, parenting, etc. We have no down day between these two—we’ll be glad to have that before the next event. But this time that just wasn’t in the cards, so do pray for stamina in this quick turnaround. We are so grateful for your friendship and prayers!
Rich and Lisa Lamb