The Difference A Year Can Make
January 25th 2016 marked one year we have been in Moldova serving the Lord. This past year has been challenging at times but so rewarding at the same time. We experience days that it seems like we just landed and then days that seem like we have been here for 10 years. This one-year anniversary entry has been a struggle; I wrote the entry many times since January the 25th but I could get the release from God to say this is what you should write about. Originally I wrote to tell you all about my family and how life has changed for us this past year. I was going to tell you about all the sacrifices we have made in day to day life. I even wrote one draft to tell you about all the funny unbelievable stories from living in Moldova but never really find God’s message. So in recent weeks the Lord told me, “Kelly you are struggling to write because you want to write about you and your family’s life, you should write about how I am working in Moldova”. So I listen to the Lord and prayed, feeling this was my direction to write about this first year in Moldova, I was to write about the Lord and even among all the depression and poverty here He is alive and well. I ask you to please take the time to read this entry, I will not lie the entry is long but this is my heart. This is a detailed description of various examples and accounts to how the Lord is working and changing lives for the Kingdom in Moldova.
While traveling to the North one day for some family visits we had the opportunity to talk with a family which came to Moldova on a promised job that did not exist once they arrived. The Father packed up his entire family based on this job. He felt helpless and lonely because of his decision. OM Moldova stood in the gap allowing the Lord to shine through the team members with food parcels and firewood for this family. The Lord is working in Moldova.
We had only been in Moldova for a few months and we could already see how the Lord was alive and well working in our lives and providing for us. The Lord provides no matter what, for He is always faithful to His promises. During the early transition we were provided with an apartment and a car through the Lord.
Some times you have to step back and be reminded of your why, we were reminded after a visit to the village of Huzum. There in Huzum the Lord is alive for you can see it in the eyes of the children at the Day Center. We are called to serve Him and yes to serve Him you may have to leave your comfort zone but we live by Faith knowing He will be there beside us just as you see that in the eyes of these children. The Lord is alive and well in the children of Moldova the next generation to change this country.
Then you can see the Lord working through others around you, as a missionary you will live out many firsts and sometimes they can be hard. For I know God sends people into ours lives at various moments throughout your walk for a direct reason not just because. We saw God work through others as we celebrated those first birthdays and holidays. We serve a loving God and He so much wants us to feel loved. Through these people God is very much alive in Moldova.
Then there are other times I look back and see the Lord in Michael and Mary, they knew nothing about living on the mission field in foreign country other than trusting in Mom and Dad. This is much like our walk with the Lord, we are not sure what is around the next corner but we trust in our Father to guide and take care of us. This past year I have send the Lord shine through my children in so many ways, whether making friends on the river in a village or helping a family on the street with food, their heart shines the love of God. Through Michael and Mary the Lord is working in Moldova.
Also I have seen the Lord provide no matter the need, traveling to North with two Moldovans to meet up with an PLM Outreach to help with the ministry in a village and we were greeted by this family of believers giving up their beds so we had a place to sleep that night. For God is a loving God and through His people His love shines in Moldova.
While on that same outreach in the North I was able to see the Lord working thru a young man who was proud of his geese and house but also content with what the Lord had blessed his family with. Sasha and I meet him while walking in the village while inviting children to the program. He was tending to his geese and began to tell us about his life, and invited us to his house for tea. He was proud of what the Lord had blessed his family with. In the eyes of the Western World it was not much but through him the Lord shined on me that we must be content and happy for today He is taking care of us. The Lord is alive and well in Moldova.
Usually after a children’s program in the village we try to give the children a treat, a couple pieces of candy and sometimes even ice cream. In these times to the Lord is working, He has opened my eyes several times as I hand out candy to the children. They just sit still waiting one by one to receive the candy, no pushing or fighting just happy faces with smiles. Even with a piece of candy the Lord’s love was being shown by me. Just the simple things work here best because the children see you for who you really are.
Seems as thou no matter where you look the Lord is working here Moldova. One place in particular is in the village of Panasesti. I have wrote several times about the Lord’s work in Panasesti so you may have heard already. The work being done in Panasesti is real life Faith, truly following a vision of some church leaders and seeing them played out in real life through Faith. In a very short period of time there has been a church building built that is allowing for the Gospel to be shared and preached. Peoples lives have been changed and the Kingdom of God is growing in this little corner of the world. Just recently the church has opened a Day Center with an after school program for the village children. The people of Panasesti live in a Faith like I have never known or send before, you know without a doubt God is working there.
During the past year I have had the opportunity to work side by side with some awesome Moldovan nationals with a heart for missions worldwide. There is one in particular that sticks in my mind. His name is Ion and he feels the call to serve the Lord on the foreign mission field outside of Moldova. You can see this in his daily walk, for he is constantly thinking about how to share the Gospel with others across Moldova. At the end of 2015 he was responsible for the Bus4Life program and the villages the bus attended. During this time, I feel as thou he grew closer in the Lord by faith as he was preparing to join the Logos Hope ship in Africa. Not only is the Lord working in Moldova changing lives for the Kingdom He is birthing missionaries to serve Him worldwide.
During Love Moldova Michael and myself were part of the river outreach team. The last two days of this outreach were spent in one village. This village was a turning point for me on this outreach. This village became my eyes to see how God was changing lives and offering hope to people that were very unreached. We carried out our normal children’s program and we had close to 100 children but at the same time we had over 40 adults attend the program too. After the second day of the program everyone knew we were leaving the next day and at that time the adults begin to ask us to stay one more day. Many of them had the Lord tugging at their heart with an everlasting hope in some real and they were unsure of the feeling but did not want to turn it a loose. Even in the most unreached villages of Moldova the Lord is being heard and people are repenting. For He is alive and working in Moldova
Many times in Moldova you will see young children in the village living life each day on their own. In some cases, there father is a drunk and the mother works all day to try to make the ends meet. Then there are some cases where they have no parents for the parents have went to work aboard and their grandparents are raising them. As for the three boys, their dad is a drunk and their mother left to work aboard and they were left with no one. In the last six months these boys were taken in by a God loving, God fearing, God believing couple in the village of Micleuseni. This couple is a true example of how to live all in or nothing for the Lord. These boys have begun to change and you can see this not only in their hearts but in their day to day activities. Thou the ride was tough to begin with the Lord is working and shining through this couple and the impact they are having on the boys will be felt for eternity. God is working through believers living the example of Jesus here in Moldova.
The Lord’s work in Moldova is not only growing from the inside out it is also growing from the outside in. In the Fall of 2015 we were able to partner with a church from the States that was able to share the Lord’s love through school supplies and backpacks for 19 children at the local school just outside of Chisinau. On the first day of school there was a program where we had the chance to hand out the backpacks and supplies to the children, also during this program we were able pray over the entire school and bless all the families involved. It was a blessing to partner with this church but more importantly it was truly awesome to feel God’s love shining through us as we gave out the backpacks. For God is alive and well in the schools within Moldova.
Just in recent weeks I visited the village of Razeni to check on an outreach team, this village is much like Huzum & Micleuseni in reminding me of my ‘Why”. The village has changed some since our first visit there.The day center is no longer operating but the church is alive and well. Even without the day center the children still come to play. The outreach team averaged 40-50 children each day for the program. The Lord is working and leading the church leadership to be examples to these children and ultimately change the future with this young generation going forward. The Lord is working in Razeni through the local church and OM
We visited with a young mother and her children recently where I saw and felt the Lord’s love very strong. This mother had been coming to the local church for a while and invited another mother who live further up the hill from her on the out skirts of the village. They had been going to church for several weeks together. When we visited with a food parcel she insisted we take it to the mother up the hill she would be okay. She was being an example to me that day to how I should be more Christ like. We took the food parcel up the hill to the other lady but what the first lady did not know the Lord did, we actually had two food parcels with us that day. Praise the Lord, for He is alive and well in Moldova
One afternoon while visiting with a village family living in the worst poverty situation I had seen in a while it hard to see that the Lord was working. We talked with the children for a while before the mother came out of the house and followed by the grandmother both smelled of beer. We prayed with them not really knowing what the future had in store and left them a food parcel. Those prayers were heard from our Lord who always listens, in recent weeks He has provided this family with firewood and best of all the two young girls now attend the Day Center offered at the church in Panasesti. For the Lord is alive and working in Moldova and you cannot tell me different.
You may have read my post about Ion in Bransesti before, if not this is the story of Ion a believer who is blind but can see the Lord. At a young age Ion was beaten and thrown to the ground with a strong force by his father. The damaged caused by his father basically stopped growth of his body going forward. Among many other issues along the way Ion lost his eye sight, he has already had one surgery and there are plans for a second to fully restore his eyesight. He mostly stays close to home but if you visit him he will surely tell you about the Lord and his relationship with him. Most of his life he has lived hell on earth but I have never been so encouraged before than the day I meet Ion. God is working in Moldova, even through the handicap.
To have no running water to drink or to wash in is one thing but not having drank from the well of the living water changes your eternity. As a believer we get to drink from the well that has the true living water that will change you from the inside out. This is a story about a young girl named Marcica who had an entire life ahead of her until one life changing afternoon. Showing love, she stood in the gap for her mother who was being beaten by her father as a result she took a blow to her head that would change life here on earth for her. Since that day her life has been tough, her body does not function well and she has a large tumor behind her eye. But the story does not end there, for the Lord has shown up. In recent months the Lord has provided Marcica and her mother with a well and an indoor bathroom with shower that has changed her life considerably day to day. It seems to always be the little things we take for granted. Just after one visit with Marcica and her mother you can see the Lord is working in Moldova
While on outreach in the village of Grinauti with a PLM team I got to see the Lord working through a cripple lady. Her name is Diana and she is bed ridden due to her being cripple. We got to visit with her, sing songs and shared scripture from the Bible. She is a very strong will lady in her belief, you can see this in her actions and the conditions she lives in. While there visiting we were chased out of the house by her father a non-believer so I know for a fact the Lord is with her, protecting her each day especially from her father. Our true Father is protecting the handicap here in Moldova.
I have reached the end and I hope you have too. Please reflect on what you have read and be in pray for my family as we enter this second year serving the Lord in Moldova. I read this verse from the Bible today that was very impactful and wanted to include it as I close out this entry. For our time here on earth is short, let us be the light we should be to the dark world by shining the Love of God for all to see.
This good news of the kingdom will be proclaimed in all the world as a testimony to all nations. And then the end will come. Matthew 24:14
Pray that the Lord continues to work in Moldova but also pray that the government turns to Him and sees His good works because time is to short. Thank you for your time and prayers, God is good all the time God is good.