Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Radiant Bride

This year's JV Fall Leadership Conference is all about the Church. All this week we will be talking about the Radiant Bride that Christ has chosen to make His church into. What I have really loved so far was the Pre-Conference. All of the ESIs were in a seminar called Storytelling - The Gospel. Basically we went through the story of God in story format, which brought out some unique insights. The discussion leader/storyteller really made it clear to me that this is God's story, and that we focus way too much on ourselves in it. He also made it clear that sin is really a trust issue, and that Satan (as his main tactic) challenges our identity and twists what God says. I think I will look at the Bible and the Gospel differently in light of what I have heard, with a more complete view of God's plan. It's amazing that we didn't go over things like this at Moody the way we did in two short sessions.

I am very excited to see what other insights God has for me this week as we talk about the church.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Festival NaMax - To the Max

All this week during NaMax I was reminded of John 10:10. Jesus said, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." This verse filled my thoughts as I spoke to students, sharing my life and the gospel. What we offer people with the Gospel is not only eternal life in the future, but a fulfilled life now (in Christ).

NaMax reminded me of why I do ministry. I really enjoyed the school visits (though many times I either dread or fear these visits), I got to connect with two students: Radek (pictured) and Jakub, and I met many other new friends in Třinec. It was a great week of ministry.

It was also great to spend more time with the ESIs, the group of Americans that are here for 7 months (including me). I really got to know Erin and Aubrey more, as we had not really had any time together (they weren't in Krakow). These two ladies are wonderful, and it was great serving alongside them this week and seeing their heart for Czech students.

Coming up:
Sept 19: Vysoke Myto English Camp Reunion Party
Sept 20-21: Weekend retreat with Vikýřovice BJB Church
Sept 21: Sport VOLANT
Sept 22-27: JV Fall Leadership Conference (Joining missionaries from all over Eastern Europe, including a lot of nationals involved in each country-specific organization...it will be SO sweet).

Please continue to keep me in your prayers as I serve here in Czech. I am learning a lot.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

On the Way to NaMax

NaMax basically means "to the max" in Czech. It's a week long evangelistic festival where tons of Christians blitz one town and serve the community. All of us ESIs (Extended Interns) are going to help out with the festival by teaching English, Playing sports with these students, and hopefully spending time with them in the evenings at the tea houses (a great place to talk and have meaningful conversations). We'll be there from Today until next saturday (7th-13th). It's definitely going to be tiring, but I am looking forward to serving with these fine people and want to help in whatever way I can. I am also doing a "Seminar" on Hawaii. Did you know that although Hawaii is 1/3 the size of Czech that it has 1/10 the population (or the population of Prague alone)? I thought that was pretty crazy.

As to what I've been up to, this week we started some of our fall programming, which included our first English Club for beginners and intermediate students! It was a lot of fun and they were a great group. I'm sad to be missing the Advanced group this week because of NaMax, but I'll have time with them in the future.
Erica and I also met with Trevor and Cassie for dinner and fellowship. They are our supervisors, so we "have to" meet with them, but it is definitely a pleasure to do so. They are very encouraging, and it was a good time to talk out how things are going so far.

Here are some of my current prayer requests:
*That I continue to focus more and more on Christ as we enter Programs designed for ministry.
*For understanding and discipline in language learning.
*Strategic meeting with students.