with her Ukraine Sisters-in-Christ, Tanya and
"For we are God's fellow workers
. . ." —I Corinthians 3:9
"Man plans and God provides." Oh how true that has been on my mission trips
to Ukraine. It's been my blessing to minister five times in Kiev and it's
bordering cities. While there with my husband, we taught at conferences for
leaders, mentored pastors and their wives and other married couples, and lead Bible
studies. Twice I traveled by myself and ministered to women, singles,
University students and to junior and high school students.
with (L-R) Vasim Lliade, Ance, Julia. An entire Ukrainian
family who came to know Christ!
On our last trip in 2004 we served at orphanages, hospitals, and a day center
where young boys who live beneath the streets of Kiev can come for food, a
hot shower and loving care. Ukraine missions also bring us to the infirmed and
their families, with provision of food and clothing. Some of our treasured
memories are the parties for the children. We connected with them through
simple decorations, food, songs, messages and sweet one on one fellowship.
At one Singles Conference accessing my classroom required
going down stairways of the church, outside, into the University
next door and up 3 flights of
stairs. I can still hear my footsteps echoing in that stairwell and feel
the sudden awareness that the hand of God had carried me all the
way there to serve
Him. I flew up those stairs, my entire being filled with joy as I walked
toward my class of 125 young people. Each session, we could hardly
wait to return
to each other with warm greetings, laughter, questions and testimonies.
The introductions humbling as each participant spoke
of how he/she was seeking
Christ or came to Him, their church and ministry, all of this always before
the mention of vocation or personal accomplishment. "Refiner's Fire" took
place as their godly priorities humbled me. As I shared what the
Lord had put on my
heart, His Word and unconditional love offered hope to those eager and hungry
"I thank my God every time I remember (you) our Ukrainian brothers and
sisters." They inspire me and I'm outrageously blessed by each and every one.