God’s Presence: More Than We Can Ask or Imagine
By Nancy Eberly
I learned more on this trip about missions than I ever had before! I now know how much can happen when one focuses on ministry alone. Janice, James, Mike, Alyssa, and Lydia set the pace with their joy, cooperation, flexibility, and character every day, in and out. The entire trip was a continuous adventure that no one wanted to miss even a part of. Being able to add visits to an already-packed schedule was our fearless leader Jeremy’s specialty. There is absolutely nothing any of the team would have taken out.
When we left for Romania, I didn’t know what to tell people we were going to be doing. But now, do I have a mouth full! It was total prayer and ministry the entire time. There was a display of generosity from everyone in Romania. Not just through food, coffee beans, the town hall, and meals at restaurants, but we were blessed with joyful, smiling faces from people at the churches we associated with, motels we stayed at, preschool and adult day care centers we visited, and interpreters – just to mention a few. When someone asked what we liked about Romania, we all replied, “the people.” They were so gracious and eager to draw us close and spend time with us. We were the last ones to leave every gathering as the lights were turned off and the doors were pulled closed behind us.
Nearly everywhere we went, we treaded ground where Jeremy had already established relationships. It was a city councilman who suggested and arranged a meeting with the mayor of Galati. What an amazing and humbling opportunity! The mayor was a very likable man. Of all the gifts we took for him, including a patchwork pillow, pretzels, and mustard, his favorite was the beef jerky. Do you think we may have been the first to fill the Conference Room at City Hall with prayer for Galati and its mayor?
Janice gave a blessing to the seven evangelical churches gathered at Emanuel Church during a Concert of Prayer that Sunday night. Isaiah 62 rang through the atmosphere of a full church building while “the church” was encouraged to take on a glorious new identity in Christ and to raise a banner before the nations. God promised he has not forgotten them; instead, “her righteousness will shine out like the dawn, her salvation like a blazing torch.”
Spending the evening with Corina’s family will never be forgotten, either. We prayed and sang children’s songs for at least an hour for a six-year-old to be healed and relieved of cerebral palsy. We are now waiting from across the ocean with Yana’s family to see her develop into the fullness of what God has planned for her. It was in this home we received the greatest treasure any traveler craves – a home- cooked meal eaten within the fellowship of family. Little did we know that the meal in front of us was only the appetizer . . . then came more and then more! I felt sorry for whoever had seconds of the entrée, because it was followed by two desserts!
We sensed a strong atmosphere of God’s love throughout the country. YWAM in Cluj was bursting at the seams with plans for a church plant being launched within two weeks in their back yard. The directors, Alin and Gabi, may stop by Lancaster County when they come through PA the end of October.
We felt like we had been friends for a long time with the church at VIA as they swarmed our van upon driving onto their property. As we worked ourselves out of the van, we were directed to a satisfying meal. Afterward, they eagerly joined our team with anticipation after receiving some direction on how to do Treasure Hunts for the Kingdom (Luke 15:8-10).
A young couple who had just recently became Christians, Cristi and Cristina, taught us how to be bold and to hit the target in evangelism. They were the ones who were instrumental in bringing two individuals to Christ in our presence. They knew Romanian, and were able to break through chains of demonic harassment and bitterness to lead these two women to a commitment to Jesus Christ. Talk about great rejoicing, as one of them has been heavy with bitterness for thirty years! The joy on her face will be a picture forever in our minds.
Since the fall of Nicolae Ceausescu in 1989, Romania has been listed as one of the top three countries per capita for the number of abortions performed. We were able to visit pediatrician Dr. David Ille at Pro Vita, one of Romania’s first pro-life clinics, founded twenty years ago. Janice and I had an opportunity to talk with two staff members who provide office management and counseling to post-abortion clients. Dr. Ille has plans to open 21 clinics throughout Romania in the coming years, and will provide many pro-life services and medical training at a maternity hospital he and his board have undertaken to build. God clearly has a loving arm for Romania. They are not forgotten.
There is too much to say here, but God was truly faithful, which really sums it all up. His rich presence was more than we could ask for or imagine. How were we sustained with so little sleep? And without getting sick?! Though weary arriving home, our hearts, minds, and spirits were full. May God continue to use our partners in Romania and Ten Million for Christ to build his Kingdom, one treasure at a time!