NIKOLAEV, UKRAINE NOVEMBER 11-13, 2011
"And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
The last three days have been eye opening as far as living conditions are concerned. Andrea made a comment a couple of days ago how it's interesting that there are both dilapidated and new buildings all together throughout the city. The markets, unmatched in America, are very large and numerous throughout Nikolaev. There are several large grocery stores, and with our limited exposure it appears that only people with more money use them. These grocery stores make our Northwestern WinCos look like kiosks both in variety of products and cleanliness.
Portion of market with grains in background
Small Pet market outside large market.
Friday we met up with Olamide and spent some time looking at pictures of his family/friends living in Nigeria. I was shocked to learn about the city of Lagos and that there are 8 million people there. We talked some about studying God's word and how it helps to walk with Him.
We were able to see Olya on Saturday to pray with her and talk about our life in Christ. After Olya left for music lessons, Andrea, Isaac, and I went to meet her mother. Olya's mother works in a library about 100 yards from our apartment. She was very kind and sweet. I ask you to pray for Olya and her family. She is wanting them to know God more.
Sunday was encouraging to meet with the church. We were not able to see all who normally attend- some work and one other brother (Stepan 86 years old) fell some time ago and is recovering from an injured ankle. There were eight people in attendance. One brother (David), is from Florida and has moved here two weeks ago. He is here teaching English and training in acrobatics for circus work.
I preached and led songs, and David led a prayer, there were times I had Olya translate a couple thoughts. This was my first full sermon in Russian- it was more difficult than I had anticipated, but it is the difficult things that push us to grow and be used by God.
David and Isaac enjoying time together
After service we had a potluck with those who remained. Also, a student from our campaign in June came by to visit and show pictures of her recent wedding. Natasha walked with us back to the apartment and spent some more time visiting.
Please, spend some time after you read this praying for those mentioned in this newsletter. Love you all, and God be with you.