Humidity, Hearts and The Holy Spirit – My thoughts from Poland Trip 2010
Thoughts, feelings, memories ramble around in my brain. I look over my pictures taken on this trip and review all that happened. How do I put this on paper? How can I express how God worked in and through everyone during our travels?
First of all I will concentrate on the weather. We arrived in Berlin, on the second stage of our trip (we had landed in London, England first) hot, tired, and sticky. The temperature hovered around 30 degrees Celsius. Thankfully, after munching a quick bite at McDonald’s we were ferried by shuttle to a lovely hotel. A shower revived me and we had a blessed night’s rest.
The next day bode the same weather – hot and humid. I chose the non-air-conditioned van – ? not sure how or why. We drove about 5 hours through small towns with the southern sun beating through the front window on my capris. As we drove we could see clouds appearing and this helped to greatly reduce the heat. A quick prayer of thanks.
The roads are quite narrow and without shoulders as we have here in Canada. The countryside was beautiful.
As we arrived at our hotel in Karpacz I lifted the weather to the LORD. With this heat and humidity it would be very uncomfortable for all the campers and I asked, if possible, could we have more moderate temperatures. Praise the LORD – the next day saw a break in the humidity and the temperature dropped. The entire week was moderate with mostly sun, and some showers.
My second thoughts are about the people. Our team became close immediately. It was wonderful to see how we fit so well together. I was particularly blessed to have the same partner as I had two years ago – Peggy. The planning for the children came together easily, without much hassle. We were blessed with amazing translators – Iza and Iwona. An International Messenger long-term missionary, Koysta – from the Ukraine – came to help us with the children’s program. He and Agnieszka took the children for outdoor games, Peggy did the Bible stories and I ran the craft room. We also taught them English worship songs using a CD player. And the children were fantastic – well-behaved, creative and exuberant.
The rest of the campers – warm, smiling and fun-loving. They worked hard on their Bible studies and English classes. Many attended the three workshops that were offered – one on parenting, another on marriage and another on addiction. We ate together, worshipped together, laughed and played together.
We even launched rockets.
And the last thought today is about the Holy Spirit working in all of our lives. I heard mention a few times about how much the campers loved to come to this camp and learn more about a personal relationship with Jesus. Since I didn’t work with the adults I didn’t get as much of a personal involvement with them as our other team members did. I know the children loved to hear the stories of Jesus and sing praise and worship songs.
Grace Fox has written in her blog about the spiritual hunger that these campers have shown. They not only attend the classes but the workshops as well. They want to live godly lives and desire to know more about how they can accomplish that.
Here are Grace’s thoughts from her blog:
“Perhaps the element that strikes me most is the peoples’ openness toward spiritual things. One woman said outright that she was seeking God and came to the camp hoping to find Him there. One man said he’d never been in such a group of people who prayed directly to God – he’d always communicated to God via a priest. These comments and others proved that spiritual hunger and interest is very much alive in Eastern Europe. So is the desire to learn how to raise kids and how to do marriage well.
Gene and I taught four workshops about marriage. Because of the days’ busy schedules, our sessions began at 9:45 PM. Yes, you read that correctly. It should have been bedtime, but that wasn’t the case for the 30 individuals and couples who showed up for the hour-long classes. I was thrilled to see so many attend. Many of the young adult singles (most of whom do not have godly role models) commented that our messages and personal example gave them hope for a God-centered marriage someday. PTL!
This year our team also offered workshops about parenting and about how to cope when a loved one suffers from alcoholism. These, too, were well attended. Our prayer is that these wonderful Polish people will have discovered new and practical strategies to help them face the challenges of everyday life. And our praise is that God is so big that He can use the likes of those of us on the team to accomplish anything of eternal value.”
As you can see we had a full camp week. I hope to tell you a little more in my next post.
Father, you know how much these people in Poland want to know you. Please help them to read their Bibles, find churches and meet others who love you, too. Let Your Holy Spirit flow across their country, awaken in them an urge to return to You and to follow You. Thank You – for looking after all of us, giving us strength and wisdom to proclaim Your Name. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.