Monday, September 01, 2003

War and Rumors of War

You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Matthew 24:6

Before ever leaving the United States, the team members involved in the orphanage outreach, knew that war with Iraq was a possibility while we were in Russia. Each one of us made a decision to go where God called during those few weeks in March, not knowing what that would mean for America, or Americans traveling overseas. On the day before Barbara Deatherage and I were scheduled to travel on to Kirov – the President addressed the nation and informed a concerned and waiting public that bombs were dropped in Baghdad, the war with Iraq had begun. Understand, that unlike the US, television sets are not that common in Russia. The hotel where we stayed had only one in the lobby. The news was broadcast in Russian early in the morning. Our interpreters arrived bearing the news and burdened with questions. Would we leave and go home? What was our response as Christians? We answered with prayer and diplomacy aware that many of our young friends were not believers. We also explained, God is in control – we are His servants and we have work to do until He comes. We left for the orphanage and the children awaiting our arrival.

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear… I Jn 4:18

With the outbreak of war, Barbara’s husband was concerned for the safety of “two American women” traveling alone by train across Russia. He called her with his concerns. As she spoke to him by phone, we prayed, the group prayed, and we asked the King – “What would You have us do?”

"Do not be afraid; keep on speaking, do not be silent. For I am with you…” Acts 18:9

Once again, I heard the still small voice of my King ask me *“Missionary why are you here?” Thoughts came flooding into my heart while the tears streamed down my face. “Are you willing to never see your children again, to lay down your life for Me?” “Yes, yes, yes,” my heart replied. I am willing and prepared even to go on alone if need be. Fear of what “might” happen should never interrupt the plans that He has set before us; our times are in His hands. With praises for His protection, we both boarded the train to Kirov to fulfill the work He had for us there!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. Prv 3:5-6

*Read “The Peace Child” by Don Richardson or request Volume 8 of the Forecast Newsletter