Well, folks, we really are still in St. P and still working. If you follow Cristy’s blog, or receive our newsletter, then you probably believe this statement.
We have been remarkably busy since returning from the States in early February. Our business is in large part due to the fact that God is providing more and more opportunities for ministry as our language skills increase. For example, Thomas preached this past Sunday. For the first time, the majority of his sermon was NOT written out in manuscript form. He had an extensive outline, of course, but he was able to speak freely in Russian while preaching! We praise God for this progress, and we thank you for your prayers!
This week we are taking a semi-break. Neither of us have language lessons, which means no specific homework to complete this week, a nice break! We found out on Sunday, though that we are going to Novgorod on Friday morning and coming back Saturday night. I say “found out” because that’s pretty much the way it happened. Maybe 2 months ago at our small group, the idea was presented for our young people to take a trip and for us to go with them. Thomas and I forgot about the conversation because nothing further was said about it to us. Then Sunday our pastor told Thomas that “the plans are all set, and we’ll be leaving very early Friday morning.” Thomas then asked, “what are you talking about?”. Mikhail Mikhailovich reminded him of the trip to Novgorod, but then he still had to explain what in the world was going on. I heard about the trip during the announcements and looked with bewilderment to Thomas, who hadn’t had time to tell me about it before church started.
This is actually not unusual for Russia. You know the expression, “blessed are the flexible, for they shall not break”? Well, we’re learning that in new and exciting ways while living here. Sometimes we bend pretty well, but sometimes it hurts a little more. God is helping us to continue to learn how to live in this culture, and it is getting easier!
When we get back from our weekend, I’ll do my best to let you know as soon as possible how it went, but if a post isn’t up until next weekend, don’t panic, I’m sure everything is fine!
Oh, and here’s a bonus: Today is Thomas’ birthday! We’re going to attempt barbequed ribs in the the slow cooker with some homemade barbeque sauce! I’ll let you know how that turns out, too.
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