The Workers are Few

Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”
Matthew 9:35-38 NIV

Korean Culture Center

We started out today by visiting the Korean Culture Center that Hana and her husband Toprak ran. It is located next to a university so they can easily engage the students there. The center occupies a good-sized apartment. The rooms are decorated with paintings, books, photography of different time periods of Korea, traditional Korean clothing, drums, and even posters of k-pop stars. Toprak also teaches traditional medicine here.

We participated in their prayer meeting. Toprak told us that more workers are needed there. They welcome short term (e.g., 3 months) workers that can teach any aspect of Korean culture. The workers will need to raise their own support.

After a delicious lunch prepared by Culture Center staff, Hana and her husband took us to tour Ephesus.

Ephesus

We took the scenic route overlook the beautiful coastlines and the sparkling Aegean Sea. We even got to stroll on the beach and waded in the water.

We arrived at Ephesus late in the afternoon, when the sun is not so blazing hot and the breeze from the sea started to blow.

Ephesus was first founded in 2000 BC. It was one of the most important cities because of the harbor, location on the trade routes, and abundance of agricultural crops from the surrounding areas. In the first century BC, Ephesus was the second largest city in the world with population of 250,000.

Apostle Paul stayed at Ephesus for 2-3 years. The city was the center for spreading of Christianity throughout the Asia Minor. Along with Apostle Paul, there were also Luke and Timothy, Jesus’ mother Mary, and Apostle John, who stayed or settled at Ephesus.

We had a great time exploring the archeological remains of this ancient city.

While we were in front of the Celsus Library, Hana called us over, and showed us the breaking news on social media:
“Andrew Brunson was released from prison to house arrest”

We finished our day at Ephesus with an authentic Korean jajangmyeon at the Korean-Chinese restaurant in the town of Sulcek. We bid goodbye to Hana and Toprak and returned to our hotel.

Faith and the Holy Spirit

Kent was waiting for us when we entered the hotel lobby. We talked about today’s event related to Andrew. Then he shared with us how he was inspired by Reinhard Bonnke’s autobiography, Living a Life of Fire. He shared his vision for a ministry by faith and by the Holy Spirit. We were all encouraged and inspired by talking with him!

What a day! We came to Turkey thinking we can encourage the missionaries here. But when we saw their faithfulness, obedience, and perseverance in the mission field, we are the ones that are encouraged and inspired!

The harvest are plenty and the workers are few. We pray that our church will raise up new generation of missionaries to harvest for the Kingdom!

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Isa Rabdir – Jesus is Lord

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We are at our last leg of the mission trip, visiting the Resurrection Church of Izmir, Turkey. We arrived Izmir just in time to participate in the weekly prayer meeting. We joined the brothers and sisters in Christ to proclaim “Isa Rabdir”, Jesus is Lord!

In his 3rd hearing a week ago, Andrew Brunson presented the gospel as he testified. Many in the courtroom heard the gospel. We prayed that the seeds sown that day will grow. We prayed for the spreading the seeds of the gospel to all the people in Turkey. We also prayed for God to send people from all corners of the world to Turkey to harvest. We also pray for God to provide this church with support to purchase the church building.

We went out to dinner with Kent and other church friends afterwards. Lamb kababs, lamb chops, veal steaks, and finishing with kunefi for dessert!

 

Farewell!

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Today was the last official day of camp. We all packed up our things and cleaned out the premises before leaving. There were lots of hugs and heartfelt goodbyes!

We also exchanged contact information! We will be continuing to pray for all of these children as they return to their homes and their everyday lives. We know that God is already working in them!

Day 4: To the Cross

 

Today, Hyun talked about the importance of mental health, and how it is our responsibility to maintain it. After talking about how important it is to express our emotions, we all shared sad and happy memories together.

We also made edible goodies! We made Eurocreme bars, rice krispies, and jello. The kids all looked like they had a lot of fun (not to mention that they may have sneaked a bite or two…)

A hiking guide came to the camp and took the campers out on the hike, and showed them various skills such as tying various knots. All of our kids were proud to show off their handiwork!Post

As part of the finale night, the kids in their small groups prepared skits as part of a competition. All of the kids took to acting out their skits, and even the teachers had a surprise up their sleeves!

We also had a candlelight service, with real candles! After Melita’s sermon, the children came up to the cross to receive a cross and light their candles. We all prayed afterwards, and there were some tears–albeit, tears of joy!

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Day 3: Splish Splash!

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Today, our Serbian camp members had a bit of a relaxing day–to the swimming pool!

It’s hard to top off the swimming pool, especially in summer. Thankfully, our HOPE team had just the thing planned for the evening–a movie! We chose Meet the Robinsons (2007), an animated film about Lewis, a 12-year-old orphan who aspires to be a great inventor–with ideas to match! The entire camp was soon engrossed in the film, and were all sorry to have it cut short by the bedtime curfew. All in all, a rather fun day!

Camp Day 2: Click!

Screen Shot 2018-07-25 at 23.25.25Today, Albert gave a lecture about money and finances to our Serbian youths. It was an issue that they will have to face in the future, so all of them paid attention!

We also had a photography session! We released the campers to take pictures around the camp, and to choose one to print via the two cellphone printers we brought with us. All of the students had a good time taking pictures and selecting one to be printed. Click!

After the evening sermon, Hyun gave Anton, one of our campers, the responsibility of explaining and leading a game. It looked like it was a lot of fun for everyone, including Anton!

 

Camp Day 1: A Sticky Situation

It’s Day 1 of our camp! Today, Hyun gave a lecture answering the question “What is a friend?” to our campers. It was a thought-provoking talk that made an impression on many of our youths.

Each day, the campers meet in small groups with their small group leaders to discuss the sermons they hear earlier that day. We’re not sure what they’re talking about, but it looks like they are having stimulating conversation!

For the activity planned by our team, we made slime! The kids were divided into 3 groups and made different colored slime. Most of these children knew what slime was, but had not made it before. Needless to say, it was very sticky.

The Serbian camp members are all very enthusiastic about praise! We are learning a new song this year!