Born Once – Die Twice; Born Twice – Die Once
This summer has been filled with many amazing days of ministry and outreach. This week I have been looking back and reflecting on how God worked in the lives of many this summer in Moldova. Throughout the entire summer we as team saw hundred’s of foreigners come and go as each Love Moldova started and ended. The adventure has been full of many different types of outreach: children’s programs where they could travel back in time with their imaginations to find out who is God, building of playgrounds in villages which leads to open doors for the local church, trekking across Moldova on trails and cattle paths sharing the Gospel with the least-reached along the way, or floating down the Dniester river where you are greeted by children wanting to be loved at each village on the trip. There was something offered for everyone, but this week I have looked past what we could get from the outreach and thought more about the lives of the people that we visited with. Did we make an impact for the Kingdom, did our love reflect the love of the Lord, will the new believers find their way as they begin their new journey. So many questions.
As I began to think more and more about these questions and others the Lord placed a married couple on my heart. I have wrote about them and others in a previous blog (The Springing Fountain) but what needed to be said was different this time. So I stopped and prayed for this couple, along with the local church in village, I prayed hoping that the church has been a light for the couple since they repented of their sins.
It was a hot afternoon and the last day of outreach in village of Sarate Veche before our team returned to Chisinau. We had already visited with many families that day and we were making one of our last stops. We drove high up a hill that overlooked the entire village to a the house of the parents of the pastor’s wife. They were not believers and the pastor’s wife struggled with this, in the village it is hard to understand why you would go and take time to witness to your own family, the time could be better spent with others who are lost. As we arrived the couple greeted us at the gate and welcomed us to their home. They had been working in the garden and they both said they were tired. They were doing some weeding in between rain storms to keep the garden manageable. His name was Colea, he turned 69 years old in July and her name was Tamara, she turned 66 years old in August. They have been married for 47 years. We began to talk with them more as they invited us to sit on the back porch of their house. We asked about life, they said they both have problems with their legs. He told us that he had a heart problem two years ago, while in the hospital he had to be shocked with a machine for his heart to regain rhythm. He also told us about a dream he had that was very real to him, he described the dream to us. He was walking down the road and he could hear someone speaking to him, he had never been to this place and the longer he listened to the voice he realized it was God telling him he would live. The Lord was giving him a second chance and he wanted to repent but his legs would not allow him to walk to church. This is when the door was opened for us and we began to tell him he did not have to pray for repentance at the church, he could pray right there on his back porch. He said no one ever told him this before but that he wanted to wait on his wife to repent too. We continued to talk to him about repentance and we explained that he could pray directly to the Lord, there was no need to go to the priest. After some time they both decided that they wanted to pray the sinners prayers, repent of their sins and ask for forgiveness. So right there on their back porch they both prayed and ask for forgiveness, repented of their sins, and ask Jesus to be Lord of their lives. Praise the Lord two more souls saved for entirety. After praying we shared with them they were born again but they would only die once, if they had not repented they would have been born once and they would die twice just as it says in Revelation 20:11-15 when it talks about the second death.
“And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat upon it, from whose presence the earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and the books were opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged, everyone of them according to their deeds… and death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:11-15)
They both said they understood and inside they felt different. They thanked us for the food parcel and said it was a blessing from God. They told us they would be at church on Sunday to share with others about the change in their life if they could find someone to take them. We told them that we would talk with the pastor and someone would be there to pick them up for Sunday church. As we walked out of the gate they both thanked us again for taking the time to stop and share about the Lord with them. We walked back to the car and I couldn’t help but praise God for sending His Son to die for us, ultimately giving us a second birth and one death.
I close by saying this is just one of the many stories from outreaches this past summer. God is working in Moldova. If you have any question about your faith contact me, a friend or your pastor. I read a quote just a few days ago that I feel sums it up completely.
“Eternity to believers is a day that has no sunset. Eternity to the wicked is a night that has no sunrise.”
How will you spend eternity, like these new believers in Moldova, I pray that is the case. Thanks for your time and prayers. Be blessed.