Hello dear friends,
Roger and I have been back in Istanbul for about two weeks now, but we already feel very settled and at home again. The church here is doing well but has suffered from the lack of team members present during the summer months. We are really praying for some amazing spiritual momentum in the next few months!
We are coming to you with an urgent request. It is not for us, but for our dear friends and team members from Uzbekistan, Umid and Gulshoda. They are refugees from their own country right now with very little help from the government to survive here. You may know them by pictures we have put up over the years. Umid is the longest permanent team member that Team Istanbul has had! Right now, Gulshoda is pregnant and expecting their baby girl to arrive any day. Unfortunately, although they have found a clean and safe hospital and the right doctor, they do not have the money to pay for the hospital fees. Incredibly enough, all they need is $1,500 for everything! In comparison to delivery costs in other countries, this might seem like nothing to you, but to them right now it is a huge burden that they cannot bear.
Please consider giving Umid and Gulshoda an opportunity to have their child in a safe clean hospital. If you are willing to give, please send it to the Missions Office either by mail or through the ggwo website (http://www.ggwo.org/index.php?module=main&action=supportus) and give to Istanbul and make it clear that the money should be sent to Roger Robbins. Also, if you have given, please let us know immediately so that we can be expecting it.
I cannot stress how important this is and I know that each of you will prayerfully consider what you can give. God has been so faithful to us and we have great confidence in the amazing generous hearts of the Body of Christ.
We look forward to hearing from you! God bless you,
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Hello dear friends,
Friday, September 17, 2010
Hello dear friends!
Roger and I arrived safely back in Istanbul earlier this week. We were overjoyed to walk into our apartment and unpack our things and get settled in.
The day after we arrived, a group of young Finns arrived for a week-long visit. We are having a great time with them and they have been a great blessing to us and the church!
Please continue to pray for us and for the church here in Istanbul. We will be faced with some difficult decisions in the coming months and we are asking for clear guidance from God. We are so thankful to be in God's call for our lives and we are calmly resting in His plan, trusting Him for all the small details that loom so large in front of us.
Pastor Matti's message in our first church service back was about suffering in the will of God. It was an amazing message and surprisingly full of joy! He was encouraging us that suffering can be a part of the will of God and if it is from God, suffering is actually the most beautiful and precious expression of His love for us. I Peter 4:12-16 describes our suffering as a glorious thing that has eternal value. We could go through life without any pain or suffering for the sake of Christ and God would still welcome us into heaven with open arms...but from what we read in the Bible, its very clear that this "suffering that worketh patience" is of great value to God in eternity. That cannot be denied. P.Matti also pointed out that in comparison to the eternity we will spend with God, our earthly lives are like a tiny drop in a huge ocean of time. So we can either choose to run away from all pain - which would mean to keep every relationship distant and never allow God's love to make us vulnerable to betrayal, disappointment, manipulation, etc... Or we can choose to glorify God in His will for our lives - which we are promised will most certainly involve pain and suffering. God will love us matter what we...So which will it be?