Greetings from the Land of Fire!!
We are now in our fourth month of #CA13 (Central Asia 2013). We spent the first three months of our time in Antalya, Turkey for a school geared to prepping people for living in the nations. While we don't feel led (at this point) to make a permanent move into a singular foreign nation, we did find this season very helpful in gaining a good understanding for and the tools (worldview, cultural understandings, etc.) needed for life in the field. As we travel through the nations and meet with people this school gives us some context for those conversations.
I can best summarize this season as a time of community. We were surrounded by a fantastic team from around the world. People who have a heart to see God's name made known in the nations. Three main themes stood out for me:
- Be Incarnational – John 1:14 – Jesus, the Son of God, put on the flesh and blood of a foreign culture and dwelt among them.
- Be Interruptible – Throughout the Gospels we find Jesus being interrupted. It was in these times of interruption that people were healed, lives were changed, and the dead was raised.
- Be Intentional – When you are there, be all there. Put the phone away. Let the distractions dissipate. Be all there.
We arrived in the nation we are currently in last week, and have found it to be an amazing place. It is bright and sunny with a constant breeze. The people we have met so far are extremely hospitable and welcoming.
We are working with an ex-pat family here. The wife leads a school for ex-pat children while the husband helps to raise up the indigenous church to create worship using the cultural elements of poetry, music, and dance.
We will be here through the end of July. At that time, we will return to the states and prepare for a fall tour to visit family, friends, churches, schools, and small groups. If you would like us to visit, then please let us know so we can figure out our schedule/route/etc.
While we are here we will be working with worship leaders from around Central Asia. We will also be serving the workers in any and every way possible. Our heart is truly to bless and strengthen them for the work ahead.
On 4 May, Stephanie and I will be participating in a seminar for worship leaders from around the nation. Worship is so critical in the work that we do, and the work going on in the nations. Worship is the best warfare against the enemy. It focuses people away from the darkness that surrounds them, and points them to the light.
We will be teaching a seminar on vocal technique and breath control. This is a felt need in this area as most of the musicians working in the church are not professionally trained.
We would love you to be praying for us in this season. One of the largest prayer needs revolves around an overarching spirit of the land. There is a spirit that sits in the former soviet empire that literally sucks the life out of people. Depression is a huge issue. Please pray that we will stay connected through prayer, worship, and fellowship to the Source of Life.
Additionally, pray that we will be a blessing to all those with whom we come into contact. Pray that we keep our eyes open to see what the Father is doing in this nation, so that we may join Him in His work.
Finally, thank you so much for being with us on this journey! We are honored that we get to do the work that we do, and that you are a part of it!
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. — Romans 15:13