Monday, August 12, 2013

Bulgaria - Week 2

Bulgaria, #2

Blessings to you from the mountains of Bulgaria!  Our second week started with a 4-hour seminar at Messiah Church in the town of Stara Zagora, and then on Sunday I preached to a packed church of around 300 people!  There was a mighty move of God and the altars were flooded!  In fact, 3 men came forward and accepted the Lord for the first time!  Hallelujah!

Then after church on Sunday, we drove high up into the mountains to Camp Karandila, where nearly 1,000 Christians from all over Bulgaria come each summer for a week for a high-powered time of ministry.

At Camp, I was the guest preacher for 2 nights, and taught lectures during the day throughout the week along with Grace and Brenda Herring.  And even though I must use a translator, we were welcomed as honored guests!  The worship has been phenomenal…what an opportunity to see 1,000 people crowded under a huge tent worshipping the Lord in Spirit and in Truth!  As I gave the altar calls, the response was far greater than anything I anticipated.  The altars were flooded with young people…we prayed for healing, salvation, rededication, and for many special needs. 

Grace and I were able to minister to many who needed healing, spiritual direction, and wisdom about their calling to ministry.   

A young boy named Vasko who is around 13 years old, asked us to pray for him as he had been very sick for some time.  After praying with him, we sensed that the Lord had really touched him.  The next day he came up to us all excited and put his arms around me and said that he was completely well and that the sickness was gone!  Slava na boga! (Praise the Lord)! Here he is smiling in the picture!

Because 95% of Bulgarians are Orthodox (like the Catholic Church but without a Pope), they consider the 3% of the population that are Evangelicals to be a “cult.” However, these people are God-fearing Christians who are simply seeking out a relationship with Christ, whereas the Orthodox Bulgarians are simply called by name only…they don’t even attend services or practice accepting Christ as personal savior. Many even suffer persecution from the Orthodox constituents.

Although we have a full schedule, several pastors came to me and asked if I could come to speak and share on worship with their congregations; unfortunately, we had to turn most of them down. However, the President of the leading Christian denomination in Bulgaria invited us to come back next year and that he would “open the doors” in every church where we wanted to go!  What favor the Lord has shown us! Hallelujah!

We have been ministering several times daily for the past two weeks…I have spoken and sung 20 times in 14 days!  And the remaining four weeks will be just as intense! Just before sending out this letter, I was interviewed by Pastor Blagovest Belev, the owner and producer of the only Christian Television station in Bulgaria. We are amazed at the opportunities the Lord has given us!

We thank you for your prayers, love, and support…this ministry God has given us was first birthed in your hearts!  We wouldn’t be able to make these missionary endeavors (or even survive) if it wasn’t for the financial assistance with which you have blessed us…we are eternally grateful. The Word tells us that, “You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion” (II Cor. 2:11).  And that is exactly our prayer for you…that you will be made rich spiritually, physically, financially, and emotionally!  AMEN!

Psalm 40:3 is the heartbeat of our mission: “"He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the LORD and put their trust in him!"  Many have already come to know Christ and have rededicated their lives because of the the new song the Lord has given, both spoken and sung!  Thank you for praying for us!

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