We’ve started back up our evening worship and prayer last night. It was packed on the 2nd floor, I think the most we’ve had yet, with only a handful of foreigners. We never know who is going to come, if anyone at all, but each night a different crowd assembles in around 7:00p. One of things that makes these gatherings unique, I think, is I don’t believe anyone is coming out of religious obligation or duty. Something about thinking we’re being righteous simply by gathering on certain times or days limits the moving of God’s spirit in our gatherings. Our motivations are huge to God in private, and no less important in public.
Those God has drawn thus far, probably about 100 from 5-6 different churches, are coming with a measure of faith and hunger that is encouraging.
One of the biggest encouragements thus far for me personally has been the level of passion among the Ukrainians. I’ve often labelled Ukrainians (and Russians) as spiritually apathetic, overly quite and subdued in their faith – however the past few weeks have shown me my ignorance. They, at least those from the churches here in RZ and Khargalyk, are hungry for more of His presence, for God to work and move in their world – we pray this fire grows and spreads in and through their local bodies. After all, an awakening must reside in the hearts of the indigenous church if it’s going to gain any significant momentum.
We’re simply providing, by His grace, a worship atmosphere and vehicle for the Spirit of God to speak and engage. Yesterday all day I felt the Lord pointing us to move outward in our prayers, from “Lord touch us” to “Lord touch this nation”. There’s a point at which we are personally filled and overflowing, and we must channel this spiritual desire towards Kingdom service. We prayed for Ukraine after 30 minutes of worship, and it was moving for me personally. God is near the broken hearted, and it was obvious in the room the people were hurting for their nation, yet not without hope. There is a battle in the spiritual realm, it’s one that reverberates on earth – and Jesus both invites and instructs us to enter this battle regularly, united, and with faith.
God restored doubt last night in many, and touched some new visitors with His presence. I heard several times, “I wish I could come every night”. We had about 15 just from nearby Khargalyk, a slightly larger town 20km to the west of us.
Today the YWAM team is in Kiev doing some evangelism. They won’t be back for our time tonight, but we’re going to move forward with whoever the Lord provides to worship and pray for continued awakening. We’re going to start doing some outdoor worship/evangelism in public areas during our market days as well – please pray that God would draw, touch and cross the obvious cultural barriers, and also give us wisdom as we do some more public things with the gospel.