Sunday, September 01, 2002


East West Ministries
Construction Project
Ministry to 450 children in 3 orphanages
Snack Food
All the believers were together and had everything in common. Acts 2:44
A pleasant part of any new adventure is the camaraderie formed in shared experience. From Madagascar to Moscow, those we share adventure with hold a special place in our hearts. Veterans offer advice to newcomers and we laugh and cry together, on our way in the journey. We arrived in Moscow, all fourteen of us, with the usual two thousand pounds of allotted luggage packed with humanitarian relief and American necessities of travel (blow dryers, toilet paper and snacks).

As we boarded the train, we were quite a sight. Easily spotted by one of the interpreters (Zhenya) making his way back to Kirov from a business trip in Moscow. He was eager to join with us and experience the fun of fellowship in the happily crowded train compartments. Zhenya made a comment when he saw all of our “snack food” crowding the train table. Piled high with candy, peanuts, chicken flavored chips, soda pop in a variety of flavors, diet, caffeine free, juices of mixed fruit, cherry, orange – anything, ANYTHING one of us might think we would hunger for at some point in our journey. Are we so afraid of being hungry for 30 minutes that we carry peanuts 14,000 miles to satiate an appetite we might develop on our way to do the Lord’s work? His words rang a very loud, poignant truth about our “cultural” differences.

These were His instructions: "Take nothing for the journey except a staff -no bread, no bag, no money in your belts. Wear sandals but not an extra tunic. Mark 6:8-9

Jesus sent His disciples out two by two and specifically told them not to take anything with them but the coat on their back and their shoes. Their reliance was to be on Him – their focus traveling light. And here we travel with good intent thousands of miles unwilling to hunger for the few minutes in comradeship with our fellow brethren who live on far less, and concern themselves with less than their American counterparts - with our bubble gum and peanuts.
Have we developed a fat and fat-free society living on a religion that we can take small bite-size morsels out of the bigger more lasting?

I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready. You are still worldly. 1 Corinthians 3:2-3

The Bible has many illustrations of those who craved more and the result: The Israelites in the wilderness could only gather manna for the day’s needs. Any more and it rotted in their tents. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, “Don’t worry about what you will eat or what you will drink.” In our culture to provide more, have more, never having want for anything, we have forgotten the basic “give us this day our daily bread.” Jesus said nothing about “be sure to bring snacks.”

So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:31-34

My prayer for the week of ministry we had in Kirov was to introduce the children to the Bread of Life, to teach them about the Living Water, and in the end to hear the exclamation and invitation of our King, “Well, done my faithful servant. Come and enjoy the feast of the Master!”