Saturday, October 20, 2012

SNOW IN OCTOBER??!!!!'ve read that correctly!!  It was just a little over a week ago we had this:
Beautiful warm fall weather and leaves that had changed into these wonderful colors! THEN last Thursday, (the 11th) we woke up to this:

Of course we shouldn't be so surprised - we DO live in Siberia! It snowed most of the weekend and has been a driving nightmare with the road to the city closed for 4+days.  The folks here are actually hoping for warm weather just one more time! Not sure if that's going to happen this year. Well enough weather news - let's get to the 'real' stuff!
Harvest Sunday - some of the harvest.
    “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe…”  Hebrews 12:28  For the past three years, we have taken the first Sunday of October and celebrated the harvest from our gardens and the fields. Unlike most places in the US, the folks here actually grow a majority of their food for the winter months. They cut hay for their livestock and bring in multiple loads of wood to be cut and stacked for their wood burning stoves. The word ‘harvest’ has quite a special meaning for these people. On Oct. 7th, we once again celebrated with fellowship, a message from the Word, a fantastic meal, and prizes! (It was decided that a prize should be given for the biggest vegetable grown and for creativity using food items.
These ladies won prizes for creativity!
Home made bread with harvest design.
Sandwiches made into flowers & animals.

Bouquet of flowers from dough. 

Prizes for largest vegetables!!

      Kevin was given the honor of sharing from the Word; it was a simple message of two kinds of harvest. No one could have imagined how the Father would work in that service!
When you received our last update for the blog you may remember we've been a bit discouraged lately. Along with our fellow workers, we've been lifting this area and the work in prayer knowing the enemy is not willing to give up his stronghold on this region. With people leaving instead of more coming to our little fellowship we were feeling defeated. However, our Father’s timing is always perfect and He chose Harvest Sunday to remind us of that fact. After the message, Kevin asked if anyone wanted to make a decision that would change their lives or was there anyone needing to rededicate their lives. The answer was amazing! Several came forward asking for prayer so they would be bolder in sharing their faith. Then two older ladies came forward and asked to pray  for forgiveness and to receive the free gift of salvation!!! We give thanks for answered prayers, “since we (they) are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken.” Now the real work begins as we study His word together!
Some of the folks that attended Harvest Sunday service.
    "...and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe..."  There is still much to be done here. In a ‘village’ of 8,000, our small fellowship averages 30 people plus children. However, we see His hand in many lives and are in awe at how He continues to use 'us' in the middle of Siberia! Please continue to remember the folks here and this region in general. We also ask that you remember Tanya and her daughter 'Jean' as they wait in Moscow for Jean to have surgery on her jaw bones. The surgery was set for the 15th of Oct. but on arrival they were told because of a shortage of anesthesiologists, they may have to wait up to a month or more. They have very little money and are fortunate that Jean has a bed at the hospital while they wait. (Her mom, Tanya, shares the bed with her - no Ronald McDonald Houses here.) Lastly, we ask you remember us as we make preparations for some time in the States. We'll arrive in LA before Thanksgiving and be in the US until the end of April 2013. We'll write more about that later.....
    THANK YOU to all who keep us encouraged and up-to-date on what's happening in your lives! Helps us to keep you in prayer as well. 
    Blessed to be serving together!
              Kevin & Laura