Monday, October 15, 2012

River of Love Still Runs Through It

My brother Hard Rock and his wife and son heading home after church.  I've encouraged people to come to church as a family.  This picture personified a people who are going somewhere so I had to post it. 

River of Love church was razed and rebuilt last summer and is in leadership transition.  Their leader for the past year got called to the capital city for further study.  So the few faithful ones were wondering who would lead them now.  There were some hurdles of fear to clear for these sheep without a shepherd. 

Church yesterday was cold because with the leader moved out, there was no one to start a fire.  So we started church right on time giving God the first word.  We read the first half 1 Corinthians, took the offering, sang 3 or 4 songs of praise, ended with the Lord's prayer.  Then we gathered in a circle in the sun near the back to decide who would be the new leader and agree to live in the apartment next adjoining the church hall.  It was a lively conversation where some hard truths were spoken, but God showed up and showed us a willing and able lady member.  I drove home grateful for God's promise to provide for his kingdom work.

The sheep of his pasture in the little town of Baruun Haraa, about an hour south of us, seemed satisfied and full of faith that God would lead them through the winter.  It will be a pleasure to walk with them as they discover God is enough, that this is His church, and He's still running a River of Love through it.  The new leader was surrounded in prayer and embraced by members of her flock. 

May the love flow warm all winter and may His grace run through your heart and life as well.
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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Playground Around the World

Last couple evenings I have been able to play some basketball with the guys outside our apartment.  Today I wanted to shoot around a little and the court was empty.  As usual after only a few shots and bounces of the ball, kids started to crowd the court.  I have played with the idea of trying to see how many shots I can make before they come out and I have to share the ball with them.

This time I decided I'd try to improve their skills while we shot around together.  So we played around the world.  These kids were 10 years old, so we started by shooting 8 foot shots.  They made their five shots and moved out close to the 3 point line.  The biggest kid isn't having much luck, so he sort of folds his hands and feigns a prayer before he shoots.  And it goes in.  He does this several more times with remarkably better success.  In face he beats me around the world, making his five 3 point shots before me.  He even had me praying for help from above so I didn't finish last.

The highpoint of the 30 minutes on a sunny summer day though was talking to 'Billy' while we played. I said his Mongolian name when he first came out to play.  He spoke a few words of English with me, which was surprisingly good.  Then he asked in English, "How do you know my name?"

"You used to go to school with my daughter Maggie" I told him.  "You came to her birthday party with your mom, do you remember?"  It was only later when I was telling this story to Renee that I remembered it was Maggie's 4th birthday.  She is now 10 1/2.  But Billy said he remembered with a kind of nod.  Later when we were throwing up 'prayers' for the ball to go through the hoop, he asked me if I believe in Jesus!  "I do too", he said.  "Our family goes to church", he added.

Maybe it is because it seems that finding Christians in Mongolia is so rare that this encouraged and struck me so. It reminded me that we are here to participate on what God is doing here AND to report on what he does independent of us.  I was amazed to the point I knew I needed to write it down.

I asked him, "how can you speak English so well? Do you have a teacher?"  He said, "No I just study on TV".  The best part is when the boy who won our Around the World game was kind of playing at praying for God's help, Billy took the opportunity to tell him that praying to Jesus is the way to go.

I was amazed again, and didn't have to utter a word there.  But I surely couldn't go to bed tonight without writing a few words here about what a great God we serve.  There was such a sweetness in the way that Billy spoke English and spoke of Jesus in Mongolian to the other boys.  He is the way to go!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Josiah Stuart Dedication

Josiah is now just over two months old.  He is now 14 1/2 pounds, twice his birthweight.

We're grateful for his growth so far.  We decided to dedicate him as a gift back to God at Field Forum.  Here our Regional Director for North and Central Asia Tim Crouch holds him during the ceremony.

For those who weren't watching, these Bergevins are now a family of seven.
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Thursday, March 01, 2012

Classmates in Costume

The kids got a day off school for celebrating Lunar New year.
Here they are in costumer and apparently intense conversation.
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Clara Jemimah

Clara enjoys helping mommy with baking.

Her middle name really is Jem, but I couldn't resist the cultural reference.
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Lunar New Year 2012

This is the first of many families we visited to join celebrations of Lunar New Year 2012.

The mutton meat and dumplings copiously flowed over this intricately decorated table.

The kids enjoyed dressing up in the traditional Mongolian dress.

The man in the picture works at the project center.

And the lady in the middle is a leader in the church.
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