Russia 2016


Day 1: I woke up at 6am or so on the day we were leaving. I met up with everyone at the church and after saying goodbye to my family, we crammed ourselves into three vehicles for the three hour ride to the airport.
Then we had a nine hour flight to Moscow, and filled that time with reading, eating, and watching T.V. (I didn't know this, but they have TV screens to show you where you currently are, how long it's been since you left-and the time- and how long until you arrive-and time. Really liked that) As soon as we landed we went straight to baggage- and had one bag missing for two days, but later got back- and then drove to the church we were staying in for the night. After dropping our bags off, we toured the city all day long, and were exhausted, but had a great time. An important fact is that it is 7 hours ahead there compared to the East Coast. So our team was up for about 32 hours the first day. (so many of us were falling asleep in random places) :D I wish I was able to upload those from Moscow and Red Square, because it was really amazing. I could hardly believe I was in another country.
The next day we visited a smaller church and fellowshipped with them, and afterward toured a little more. Late afternoon we took a train to Vladimir. So day 3 we woke up and headed out into the city to evangelize and invite people to a concert our group was helping put on with the church.

We had many people accept Christ as their savior (at the end of the two weeks we had over 20) and many more who listened and asked questions. We handed thousands of tracts and
 Gospel of Johns out. One thing our entire group was surprised about was that if you give a Russian something to read, they'll read it. Here in America we just glance at it before throwing it in the trash, but over there we would come back twenty minutes later and see people reading the stuff we had given them.
The church we are partnered with was so friendly and hospitable. We immediately connected as brothers and sisters in Christ. And even our team grew closer together, and we got to know each other better. It was a wonderful time of fellowship with other believers.
Pictured left: Russian Rubles.    Pictured right: Gospels of John
One of the things that was most amazing for me
was when believers from both America and
Russia would sing together
                                         (A palace in Moscow)  
in their native language. One of the things I love is to hear others singing
together and worshiping. To hear it in different languages at the same time is something I've wanted to hear, and loved so much.
The translators we had were amazing people. One of them had been saved three years ago by someone handing them a tract in the exact area we had been working in. It was truly amazing to think about, and I've prayed many times for those we talked to, that they would search for God.

While we could only communicate with a few of the believers there in our native language, we did many things together to connect us all. One of the many things we would do was play extreme musical chairs.
 (Which is a lot of fun if you've never played it before) And if it was after church we would sit and try to have some form of conversations. I even pulled up the Star Wars: Rogue One trailer in Russian, and we are all excited about it.
(And yes, a few times I used Google Translate so I could understand.)  :) The Russian language is really a cool language. I had learned a little before going, and it is quite easy to read once you learn the alphabet. But I am no master and could not have conversations while we were there. The people were generally nice. When
 witnessing I did come across people who were a little upset that we would ask them if they believed in Jesus, or other similar questions.

The food there wasn't bad at all. I had some borsht soup, but it was not my favorite. The meals we had were quite good (including a crepe type meal) and they had some excellent drinks. (I forget what it is called, but they had this lemon-mint soda that was really good)

 If you
 have any questions, let me know and I'll try to answer them soon. To everyone who supported me monetarily or in prayer, thank you so much. I will never forget it, and hope to one day go back, Lord willing.
Until next time!


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