We just ended a great weekend of ministry and family celebration we want to share with you.
On Friday night, I was asked to share a message at the Pentecostal Church’s young adult group (ages 18-30). I spoke on the need for transparency. Interestingly, there’s no direct Swedish equivalent for that word…the closest is a phrase that means “to allow insight”. I had to illustrate with clear transparent glasses filled with water and colored non-transparent glasses, but I think they got the point. I believe the lack of being transparent with at least 1 or 2 intimate friends can easily lead to destruction of people’s personal and spiritual lives. I’m praying that these future church leaders will take up the challenge and experience the freedom from shame and guilt that comes only through being transparent first with God, and then with their transparency partners.
On Sunday, our church was visited by Yura, a Russian pastor and men’s ministry leader who serves in the Russian Arctic tundra. He shared how his ministries of wilderness adventures (hiking, camping, mountain climbing, etc.) and small groups aboard the Russian naval ships passing through the port are helping to develop men into the husbands and fathers God has called them to be. Interestingly, Yura does this through teaching the men to be transparent with each other – the very same principle I shared with the Swedish young adults! I love how God delights in bringing seemingly unrelated people and events together to show us His desires! The picture to the right shows one of the Russians sharing about how Christ has radically transformed his life through the men’s ministry. He spoke in Russian, Yura (in the center) translated the Russian to English and then Richard (our pastor) translated the English to Swedish. We’re so glad we won’t need translators in heaven!
Sunday was also Father’s Day in Sweden. When we first came, we decided to continue to observe the holiday in June rather than November. However, Jensina crafted a beautiful card for me and I really want to share it with you. Definitely one of those things that makes a Dad burst with pride!
We continue to ask you to join us and pray that God would cut through all the hindrances and allow us to be in the States for Jiana’s birthday on November 23.
Thanks for your involvement in our ministry!