Our observations…

This was hard work, but we saw God work in others and us in spite of human personalities and Satan’s chaos.  Existing relationships were strengthened and new relationships are cherished.  We have certainly seen an increase in our Facebook friend-connections!

Where we went…

We spent 9 days enjoying the diversity of the urban realities of Almaty, with commodities of oil and chocolate.  The city is overcoming the challenges of their Soviet infrastructure and preparing for Olympic hopes.  Properties with beautiful iron gates line the streets, giving protection from the survival-of-the-fastest traffic, and the city is full of municipal parks and modern public structures.  In the midst of the rush of Russians, Kazakhs and Kurds, we found ministries stubbornly – and lovingly – struggling to meet needs in their communities.  And at every turn in the road, we were reinvigorated by the majesty of God as the mountains reminded us of His power to guide nature, lives and nations.

Thanks to Pavel Tenyakov for this great view of Almaty! (Click to watch the video)   [Mouse-over photos below for context]:

What we did…

  • Partnered with 2 main organizations ministering to their neighboring Slavic countries: Bible Institute of Almaty and Bible Mission International
  • Sent WordWalk greetings to 5 different churches around Almaty
  • Helped with the roofing and maintenance where Sergey and Svetlana are working with marginalized Kurdish children
  • Listened with amazement to how God is leading Bakhyt in his vision to love the handicapped
  • Ate in the homes of 4 gracious families of believers
  • Contributed to 4 worship services
  • Led 6 sessions translated for believers in the Creativity Laboratory, designed to encourage creativity in ministry
  • Led 30 sessions and activities with young adults in English camp
  • Developed new creative language [and pantomime] skills helping 40 young adults navigate English conversation
  • … and traveled around 50 hours in airports and planes going & coming

What we miss…

  • Genuine believers eager to share their ministries, skills and lives with us
  • Grateful, loving hugs that reached past language barriers
  • Tea time and bowls of chocolate candies on every table

Previous Trip Reports: