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Two strange birds

conf rehab fotoEight of us went to a conference on Saturday.  It was the first one we were involved in organizing for central Ukraine and we invited volunteers from eight other rehab centres to come.  Looking over the hall and seeing God’s grace in the lives of these guys and girls was amazing.  The unusual thing was that in this picture, Marie and I are the only ones who weren’t addicted to drugs or alcohol.  That’s a fact.  Actually, I just realized, I took the photo…  Marie is the only strange bird pictured!   

To my surprise, the conference was pretty much perfect.  Rather than have several sermons or Bible studies, we had one sermon and the rest of the day was filled with questions and answers that touched on rehab ministry.  The super-happy guy up the back had just been released from prison and was still high from freedom and the love of his Christian family.  (Most of these guys have spent time in jail.)

Photo for dadTalking about jail…  Tolic, ( the book lover), decided to hand himself in to the police a couple of weeks ago.  He learned that they were looking for him for a theft he had committed a few years ago and he would need to do a four month stint.  Four months is a slap on the wrist for most of our guys and without too much trepidation, he headed off… with six books in his back-pack that he will basically commit to memory while there.  (Incredible brain!)  He will be out before our church camp… something he’s very keen to be at.

Shane and Jemi have been looking after the youth ministry since getting back from Australia.  For some reason, the numbers of non-church-going students has dropped off a lot from youth group.  Last week, they started something new at their place for students from one of the technical colleges – meat night.  35 kids came out to eat and if God has mercy, some of them will end up understanding what will eternally satisfy them.  Shane and Jem are superb with these teenagers and have a good team of helpers.  May God be glorified!

Pris has another meeting with the young mothers tomorrow.  The wisdom she teaches them is so valued.  We have numerous little ones in our church now and it’s something I just love!  Admittedly, there are times when I’ll put on my “extremely displeased” mask when one of them disobeys or whines, but generally, I am delighted by the way God is glorified through their little lives.

I’ve been spending a fair bit of time helping Igor (one armed), and his wife set up their house during the last two weeks.  He is doing fine…  trying to get off the pain killers the doc prescribed, and keen to serve God with what is left of his life.  He’s a laugh and a half!  Today he sent me a video in which he showed me a pipe he needs a connector for and ended the video with “amen”.  I can’t fault him for trying too hard to be a Christian…  He and his wife are standing next to Marie.

May God bless you, the reader!