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Pray for Ukraine

October 06 2014
October 06 2014
 
 
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Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed on and triumph. (2 Thess. 3:1; RSV)

On Tuesday, I depart for Ukraine for two weeks of ministry. Tara departs next Tuesday, Oct. 14th. This will be my third trip to Ukraine and Tara’s second. While there I will have the privilege of sharing at the country-wide missionary conference for all Mission to the World (MTW) missionaries. The second week will be devoted to a conference for Ukrainian ministry leaders focused on the challenges of leadership in ministry.

I know that many of you are aware that Ukraine is undergoing difficult political strife and is experiencing armed conflict in the eastern part of the country. Tara and I, however, will be traveling to L’viv, in the far western part of the country and more than 600 miles away. L’viv is a historic, beautiful European city of about 1 million people (enjoy the pictures!). I want to assure you that I feel very safe about our destination.

Nevertheless, it is our hope that this blog will stir you to pray not only for our safety, but more importantly for the people of Ukraine and that the fighting in the east would cease. Please pray that the newly formed government in Kiev would be firmly established so that the people of Ukraine can join together as one country. Pray also that the United States and those in Western Europe would offer strong support to Ukraine.

While concern for safety cannot be ignored, my heart is mostly filled with anticipation about the privilege of speaking to so many who are doing so much to extend the Word of the Lord in such an important mission field. I cannot express how much I respect missionaries like Doug and Masha Shepherd and Heero and Anya Haquebord, whom Redeemer supports, and many others. I feel that I’m not only going to share, but to learn and have my own passion for the Gospel deepened.

In addition to this, I will have the privilege of sharing with Ukrainian nationals who are doing the hard work of church building in their country. Ministry leaders from Kiev, Odessa, Kharkiv, L’viv and other cities will come together to swap stories, study the Scriptures and join in prayer for one another. Tara will have a special opportunity to gather with the wives of pastors and other female ministry leaders to discuss challenges common to women in ministry.

Therefore, I want to encourage the Redeemer church family to pray earnestly for us and that the Word of the Lord would speed on and triumph (I love the RSV translation of this passage!) in Ukraine!

With much gratitude!

Tom


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