Summer Day Trip

We drove 40 minutes to Stavy, a small village just west of us to visit Mark and Masha today. They are living in their parents massive, old school house which their family lived in for several years before moving back to Ontario, Canada.

They are open to using the property for hosting some retreats, or however the Lord might use this wonderful space. We call our guest house the big house, this makes our big house look like a small house! It’s probably 6000-7000sf of space, and was designed for a fostering / orphan ministry. Masha used to live next door, at the big house for a couple of years. It’s so cool to see how God provided her a wonderful Canadian dude, and now a baby!

I loved seeing this combine bouncing down the road. I used to have a toy combine sort of like this as a kid, so it brought back memories. I stopped my truck, swung around and chased it down the road to get this photo. The driver must have thought I was nuts.

We no longer use our beach much since the tourists rolled into town a few years ago, it’s just too small and gets packed quickly. Plus the water is rather unclean..Kyiv actually shut down their beaches last week due to pollution. Well, the girls didn’t mind a quick visit .. just don’t drink it!

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All in.

In studying hermeneutics and interpretative practices in my final semester at Fuller, it’s been wild to consider the many ways in which we all, from varying point of views and contexts, approach and attempt to make sense of the Bible.

In this week’s focus on inter-textuality (how the biblical authors draw upon outside sources), the professor stated something a little shocking, but refreshing to hear.

Don’t fret about injuring the Word; it’s more resilient than we are. Don’t worry about making a mistake or about leading the rest of us astray. “Sin boldly,” as Luther used to say. Pursue your task honestly and energetically. The entire concept of learning entails our being wrong about something! Keep learning and trying to apply what you learn, all the while in willingness to listen to your peers. Trust the rest of us — no matter what century or what nation we come from — to call you out if you step off the road, and we know you’ll do the same for us. When it works, that’s how it works; it’s a community thing. For it is we the Church, the totality of us, whom the Spirit leads into all truth, rather than any one of us all by ourselves.

R. Erickson | Biblical Studies Professor +30yrs at Fuller

How often we are told, as believers, to hold tightly our beliefs concerning doctrine and faith. Little encouragement is given to the pursuit of learning, it’s so often the pursuit of certainty, as if Christianity is about possessing the right cognitive information. Learning requires unlearning. Ignorance in the NT is not simply the lack of information or data, but the possession of hostile or foreign ideas that aren’t native to God’s revelation in Jesus.

As I spoke with my son Clark last night, we mused over the ideas of knowing vs growing, of the dangers of thinking we are the sum of our beliefs. We are so much more than what we think, we are loved, valued, and pursued by the God of the Universe not because we think rightly, but even as we don’t, because our God is love. I used to think you need to think rightly to be know God rightly. What folly. We are, all of us, coming from imperfect perches, shaped by our culture, our context, our biases.

What if we approached knowing God as a collective, exploration up a mountain? It’s peak too high to ever reach, but up and forward we climb. What if, instead of assuming battle positions around the Word of Life, we admitted our narrow views, limited exposure and learning, and came to God as children, mining His Word as our kids might hunt for treasure in the forest? What if we all just admitted we are wrong, in so many ways, in thought, attitude, and that but for God’s deep mercy and loving posture towards us, we’d be quite lost and alone in this world?

God’s revelation in Christ is solidified, communicated, and clearly seen in Scripture. Start, and define God through the lens of the Son, and let the Spirit guide you through the rest of the formation process. All the other pet ideas of God and the universe, allow them to be aligned under the illuminating Son of God, align within the wake of His perfect mediating revelation. If we construe a God that cannot harmonize with Christ, we can be sure we have bigger problems than injuring doctrines in the Bible, for then, we’ve assumed God is something other than the Word become flesh.

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Summer Update!

Calling All Missional Hearts!

On Saturday, July 31, we are hosting a mid-year, open Zoom prayer time for supporters, friends and family. We would love it if you could join us from your location!

Please message me on FB or by email for the link!

Times:

7pm Ukraine 
12pm Eastern 
11am Central 
10am Mountain 
9am Pacific

Mission Building Update

Last fall, we bit the bullet and demolished our old garage pantry with the dream of creating an expanded space for missional training and service to our region. That dream is well underway, block by block!

If you have a minute, I’ve compiled a short 1 MINUTE time-lapse video up until today.

In Phase 1, we raised $50,000!

These funds allowed us to demolish the old garage, dig the basement, pour a new foundation, complete the basement, waterproof, and first floor walls. We’re currently preparing to complete the second floor, and still on budget to complete the roof by August if we can find wood – Ukraine is fresh out of dry wood!!

In Phase 2, our goal is $35,000 before winter.

Why before winter? When we demolished our old garage, we lost all our storage space, and our 2nd floor at Lighthouse is now crammed to the gills. If we can utilize some of our building before winter, even if its not heated yet, we can immediately free up creative space like our sewing room.

Items included in Phase 2:

  • Windows & Doors
  • Electric & Plumbing
  • Stairs & Flooring
  • Basement Pantry Zone Finish
  • Labor & Permits

Please consider a donation of any amount towards our Phase 2 and help us unleash more ministry space!

Thank you Pastor Steve and Risen Life Church in Longview, Texas for your generous gift that helps us launch Phase 2!

As soon as we can find dry wood beams, we will be starting the second floor and finishing the roof by the end of August. Phase one at that time, will be complete and our shell will be ready for Phase 2.
While our final materials will not be exactly like this, this is the general shape of our mission building. The basement has a pantry, large youth room/studio area, the main floor is an open space for serving meals/classes, and upstairs 3rd floor will be an upper room dedicated for prayer..

To give to our building project, please click the link!

This past weekend we hosted a new program by YWAM for teenagers. Their new Jr Discipleship Training school is a pilot program in Ukraine for 13-18yr olds over a 5 week period.
Got my fill of teenagers as we hosted interactive workshops designed to get them asking good questions around what makes the Gospel so good? Most of the students 10yrs ago in YWAM were foreigners. Today, 80% of the students are Ukrainian – a generational movement in taking place in Ukraine, steadily, quietly.
Clark is conservative, careful, responsible, analytical, and a great big brother to his little sisters. He’s the man of the house now at 15yrs.