Monday, January 24, 2011

Our Story. Their Story. God’s Story: Part 5

I’m heeding the nudge of the Spirit to chronicle My husband and my and now OUR family’s story of calling.

I am choosing this for Tuesdays because of some of the special women at Jen’s (Jen, of course, and especially Amy) that I have been getting to know, and I feel that you and any other consistent readers (especially dear Cherry, who is a co-laborer and beloved bloggy friend) might be the most blessed to hear this story.

But, truly, I know I need to do this for myself and my God as we continue this unique journey that will, prayerfully, land me in Budapest, Hungary as a long-term missionary within the year.

Trusting all who read be blessed with a touch of Him…

He is Worthy of ALL of our lives!

My Story. His Story. God’s Story: Part 1

My Story. His Story. God’s Story: Part 2

My Story. His Story. God’s Story: Part 3

Our Story. God’s Story: Part 4 

(re-created)  I did lose it.  So I re-created it.  All of the wonderful comments helped…and I’m still working on it (THE PICTURES!) and a couple of things added!

I wanted to start out where I left off in Part 4 in which I begin our journey the year, our STINT year in Hungary:

It was not long into the year that I centered squarely upon the joy and assurance that this was exactly where we were supposed to be. Furthermore, as I observed my husband, working alongside of him, I was filled with an understanding that I was seeing him do what he was born to do.  It was as if he’d been freed up from the strain that it was to be on other paths and was experiencing the glorious joy of coming to life.  I knew, before God, that I as his co-journeying wife could not do anything but open wide this way for him and encourage him from my very depths to only step deeper into this calling.

It is a rare and wonderful privilege to be able to see first hand your husband in the light and glory of his calling in this world.  One that, by His grace, I want to hold in the deep places of my heart as the gem that it is, and when I am called to sacrifice, as we continue this journey, to see this glorious bigger picture. 

Now, where Our Story meets Their Story and We find God’s Story Together:

We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us.’

~1 Thessalonians 2:8 (NIV c1984)

This verse was often quoted by our leader Dan…oh, what a verse!  This beats so deep in our hearts when we think of the ministry relationships, both with co-laborers and with the students, that we had/have from our STINT year.

l think I will definitely be spending more than one week talking about these dear ones.

Winner Take All 027

Here is our STINT team and Zach and Julie celebrating Jeremy’s birthday at one of our favorite places, Iguana’s, the Mexican restaurant right near Parliament by the Danube in Budapest (Bp).  It was good Mexican food, but made WONDERFUL due to the fact that it is difficult to find this food even to make at home.

Clockwise from left:  Jillian, Stephanie, Sara, Julie, Zach, Jeremy, Pete, Jared and meSmile 

Jeremy has returned and I am THRILLED that he and Jared will be working together again.  We joked often that they are ‘brothers from another mother’.  And, yes, I will always love my STINT sisters, Jillian, Stephanie and Sara.  Julie quickly became my sister too.  People often say we look like sisters.

Winner Take All 032Winner Take All 033GirlsPicTeam day and Budapest pics 025

Stint Girls with Bethany (university STINT) and Andras (Hungarian national being crazy) & Dan

FEK and Marta 011

Here I am with a team of high school staff from Albania.  Csaba (Chaba) was leading their team and was a Hungarian staff.  They came up to spend the week with our team and went around the city with us.  All of these women are Albanian committed to reaching the virtually unreached high school students in their country.  For the past three summers, during the Speakout English Camp in Hungary, a mission team of Hungarian students and leaders go for a week to Albania to meet and share with Albanian students.

This was at our weekly, Friday night meeting.  It is really neat how all of the high school (and college) students come to this Kavezo (Coffeehouse) in the basement/bottom floor of a former Soviet movie theater that is now a church meeting place.  (several churches were former Soviet theaters/movie theaters…becoming a popular place for churches to meet here, too)  This was the night that I shared my testimony through a translator. 

The weekly meetings were always translated so that students who didn’t have good English skills would understand.  Often, the music was English.  Pete (on STINT team, pictured above) led a FEK (said like ‘fake’ and the name of the high school ministry in Hungary) band that was only around that year:  SHOESHINE.  It was a huge hit with quite the followingWinking smile

These meetings were the highlights of my and many of the students’ weeks.  I am an extrovert!  Who loves to write…hmmm…thinking blogging is a good choice for me?  So, I would always be so energized meeting/greeting the students that we had met in the English classes and they ACTUALLY CAME!  And after the meeting, there was coffee, hot chocolate (yum)  and plenty of conversation…often many Gospel conversations happened these nights.  Also, decisions to trust Christ!!!!  PTL!!!

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Meet Albert.  (said All-bayert)  Jared met him one day that he was pretty tired from a full day but hadn’t talked to anyone about Jesus yet.  He decided to give it a try and went to a local square where he met Albert skateboarding.  He and Albert had many conversations about the person of Christ and, while Albert was open, to our knowledge he still hasn’t become a follower of Christ—though he knows the Gospel through and through.  He has, however, continued with skateboarding and competes on a professional level.  We pray, every time we remember, that he comes to Jesus.


Picture below: Clockwise from left: Albert, Jared, FEK and Marta 015Balazs (ball-age as in gar-age) and Adam/Adi.  Jared met Balazs one Sunday morning at church.  He was an exchange student in Indiana and his host family led him to Christ!  They had a connection to the church where we were going and that’s how he was there.  He and Jared still have a special relationship.  They went out into the city many times to share the Gospel with students.  He continues to grow in his faith and has been a leader in the movement.  Makes you think about hosting an exchange student, doesn’t it?

FEK and Marta 019



Left to right: meSmile, MARTA, Sara and Stephanie.  (As a side note…haven’t been this pale since I moved to FL! Better get used to it!!) Sara and I had met Marta at a McDonald’s.  She was a little older than the college student age that was our general upper limit to talk with, however, we certainly believe the Lord led us to approach her.  She worked/works on cruise ships so she’s out for about 3 months and then in for two months or so.  She was very interested and asked if we had a regular study.  Well, we didn’t have one that fit ‘her’ so we started one and invited others, but she was the only one who came (if I remember correctly).  We did a four part series on the claims of Christ.  Before we had finished she couldn’t figure out a good reason to NOT believe Jesus was who He said he was and trusted CHRIST!  It was sad when she had to go back to the ship, but we sent her with a Bible and all of the beginning booklets for new believers.  These ships are hard even if your faith is STRONG, so, we stayed in contact and she had a roommate when she went back to the ship who was a believer!  PTL!  However, the BIG DISTRACTOR happened in that she met a guy who took a lot of her affections and I don’t think he was a believer.  I am going to e-mail her before I go to bed!  it has been WAY TOO LONG!  I’ll let you know how it goes.

I’m just sitting here knowing I need to stop BUT NOT WANTING TO!!!  It is so amazing to remember ‘the works of the LORD’.  This is not me wistfully remembering people I was with and places I visited, but the seeds of the Gospel, wonder of wonders, He used broken me to plant in a foreign land.  And one, that touched our hearts and He is calling us back there…What a God we serve!  How amazing to be a part of what He is doing…ONLY ETERNITY WILL TELL!

More stories next week and possibly I’ll start to talk about Speakout English Camp.

I love you Soli Deo Gloria Sisters…So thankful for Jen and her link-up!



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