This past spring some of the Minsk team that visited asked if we’d be interested in hosting a summer team. Kid’s camps (basically VBS style) are are still very popular in the FSU (Former Soviet Union).
This is the first week long camp we’ve help coordinate. We have a team of +20 young people serving as leaders, mixed in from various churches and backgrounds – all with a heart to love kids and invest precious seeds of God’s love. Our family has helped sponsor most major purchases, with the help of some close friends who have joined us investing in this (thank you!).
It is unfortunately incredibly hot out of the gate. 33 today (91F) and very little shade in our downtown venue. Tomorrow looks to be possibly cloudy and chance of rain, that would be wonderful! We had 45 kids today, and tomorrow looks to add to that number. We did very little advertising outside of a few posters and social media. The inflatable bouncy slide (thank you Hope for Orphans for lending!) is a huge advertisement in itself.
Morning worship at our house – we have had such amazing times together with various teams over the past 2yrs. Times of refreshing, vision, and everything else that comes when His presence is the focus of gathering.
We’re unsure what the week holds for the evenings. We have some ideas, but nothing hammered in stone. I really want the group to pray, listen and take steps of faith. Too often things are ‘progamized’ I think well ahead of time, and while plans are good – sometimes we need practice listening and obeying together. We may show a movie at night (drive in style!), play flag football, who knows! The main thing is that we maximize our availability for the Lord and connect with whoever He sends us while we have such a great venue in the center. During prayer, I had the words, “basecamp” come to mind – so we are going to plan to be in the center each evening and available for God to use us in whichever way He leads.
Pray for us please this week! We have guys sleeping in the tent watching over our stuff as security. During the night at 3am several drunk fellows came and began hassling the young guys, including Tucker. It turned out OK, but we believe there is increased spiritual activity around us – we know the enemy would love to destroy and discourage. Please go the Lord for us right now and ask Him to fight, and push back the darkness over this culture, and the families that have no hope. Many precious kids this week are hearing and repeating with their mouths the love of God over them – pray it sinks deep and faith takes root!
In other news, Claire has become quite the talker these past few weeks. She rambles quite extensively, making very little sense but if you engage her pretty eyes, and pretend you understand, she sparkles with excitement. Deb and I love this little girl. She is definitely developing at a slower pace than normal, and shows many signs of dwarfism. We are currently sending off measurements and various check-up info to a doctor friend for more direction on next steps. She is healthy, smart, but quite short and dis proportioned.
Yesterday we sadly said goodbye to one of our most loyal student workers, Nazar. Nazar, who lived with Simeon and Asia, is off to Lviv for IT College. A wonderful opportunity provided by some US sponsors. Nazar has been such a blessing, and we’ll miss him. He’s an orphaned young man who has proven that if you provide security, love and ‘home’ at an early age, you can beat the statistics.
We hosted a concert on the Patio this past weekend. It was so cool to see so many neighbors packed and listening to various homegrown talents – the Minsk team were able to perform a couple songs, as well we Bronwyn who continues to grow her creative skills with some songwriting.
Thanks for checking in! Remember to pray and battle where it counts!
Bruce & Deborah