Kazakhstan 2012 report (part 3 of 3):
OBJECTIVES / OPPORTUNITIES – By the Spirit of God and with the kindness, humility, and companionship of Jesus followers in Kazakhstan, we had the privilege and the opportunities to engage in the following ways:
- We were able to minister through song and dramatic readings.
- We were allowed to teach and proclaim in several venues.
- We creatively decorated and prepared two rooms in the Bible Institute for upcoming classes.
- We were allowed to share several ideas for teaching children…we learned some as well.
- We helped provide for and install playground equipment.
- We participated in a vibrant English club of twenty to thirty year old men and women.
- We learned to work in tandem with translators and God’s Spirit.
- We learned to navigate multiple foreign airports.
- We learned about a fascinating culture.
- We gave encouragement to single men and women.
- We were overwhelmed by our Creator and His Creation.
- We learned some words of their language.
- We made life-long friends.
- We learned about the far reaching influence of the Bible Mission and the Bible Institute of Almaty. Pray for Alexey and Alexandr, their families and their companions. You will be hearing much more about them in the days to come.
We must learn more in order to love more. We must come alongside them to help and encourage them. And, God-willing, we must return!
Kazakhstan 2012 report (part 2 of 3):
“The KZ Team” – As with any mission trip (aka “kingdom adventure”) there were some initial objectives. And, to be expected, our God expanded them into much broader opportunities (to be discussed in our next post). The team was a random mix of humans which God sovereignly blended together to accomplish His purposes. We had little time to plan and we were separated as well by distance: one part from Birmingham and the other from Pensacola with three churches represented.
The team, as seen in the photos, consisted of the following:
- Hillary, our leader, loves Kazakhstan so much that there are rumors of her changing her citizenship. Thanks to her passion and organization, this has been an ongoing effort for more than ten years. She is a kingdom pioneer and warrior. She is a mother and grandmother, stained glass artist, musician and singer, financial consultant, and a student of the Scriptures.
- Richard is skillful and creative in working with children. He is a father and grandfather. He is a writer and teacher, and he was unleashed as a preacher on our trip.
- Kristen is a mother and encourager to her husband who is a pastor. She is compassionate and patient in working with children and brings a sense of tenacity in accomplishing the tasks presented to us.
- Leslie, the youngest in our group, is an artist in multiple ways. She does graphic design, sings, and gave us creative vision for our tasks. She was also our point-person in navigating the various airports. She also is to thank for most of the pictures in this narrative.
- Leah is a song writer and a worship leader. She is also a mother and an accomplished athlete. She really wanted to mix concrete but the men refused to let her help.
- Mike is a fanatic about getting people into the Word and desires that everyone see their significance in Christ. He was the oldest one on the trip, which translated into a few privileges.
In our final post (for now), we will see just how this mission was accomplished and how you can engage in the future.
Kazakhstan 2012 report (part 1 of 3):
We’d like to present the report on our May 2012 Kazakhstan (KZ) trip in three posts. Today’s post will simply give an overview about KZ. Our next post will include details about our team and what we participated in. Finally, we will speak to the future and how WordWalk can and should engage with the current ministry efforts in Kazakhstan.
The Republic of Kazakhstan is the ninth largest country in the world. (See map in photo gallery) Clockwise from the north, it borders Russia, China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan. Its terrain ranges from flatlands to the snow-capped Tian Shan Mountain range. Kazakhstan declared itself independent from Russia December 16, 1991. Its largest city, Almaty, was its capital but that has been changed to Astana, which is further away from the China border.
Kazakhstan is beaming with ethnic and cultural diversity. Kazakhstan enjoys a degree of religious freedom, but that is in the process of changing. All religious groups are required to register with the government. This includes the names and a way to contact all in the membership.
Seventy percent of the people are moderate Muslims. Kazakh and Russian are the main spoken languages. The country’s name is derived from two ancient Turkic words: Kazakh, meaning “independent” or “free-spirited” and stan, meaning “land” or “the place of.”
Almaty, a city of nearly two million people, is the place where a small team of us came alongside our brothers and sisters of faith, to further the kingdom of God.
In our next installment we will meet the team and share with you how we were able to serve and to minister and to learn.