Thursday, September 24, 2009

Last VBS !!! mountain camp-western Ukraine

I can't believe that I am posting this picture, but I guess I am. I must be slipping. Jason and I have this joke between us about how many pictures he takes of just roads. Well, they usually are pretty cool roads, as in rocky, bumpy, or ones with rivers runny through them. I have joked that he has enough pictures of roads that he could fill a full book of them( I really don't think that is stretching it too far). But back to the reason that I decided to put this picture on my blog, we did spend a lot of time on the road this summer. Thank God that not all of them looked like this one, but some of them did. After working with the Gypsies we went to another mountain range far back in the Carpathian mountains of western Ukraine. We were near the Romanian boarder. Any way, we were glad that it had not rained in a while because we would have had to hike up this road in the mud. Even our 4 wheel drive could get to the top if it was wet. We were headed to our final VBS of the summer. Just a little tired but glad that we, with God's help, had made it this far. Once again we camped out on the mountain top and enjoyed the cows coming through our camp every morning, noon, and night headed to the watering hole. The Appling girls didn't know what to think of the cows.
We had the joy of cooking over a campfire three times a day, and washing our clothes in the river, and finding a bush if nature called. It wasn't all that bad. Josh actually liked bathing in the river. But physically we were slowing down. Thank you for praying for us. God really did help us in this camp.
Here is the camp medic, or doctor. Bandaging burns and fixing everyone up. Josh got a pretty bad burn and Dr. Jason is making it all better. What do you know, he even has his duck tape out again. Good job Daddy!!!
The children that came to the mountain VBS for the most part were shy and backward. Some of them couldn't read, while others were very quick. Only one family were believers and they wanted to reach out to their neighbors and their children. Several children came who did not go to church or have other ways to hear about God. We set up our VBS in the orchard and invited the children in. Once again, we shared how God loved us and He created all things. The animals were created in a special way and we were made special too.
Here we are singing and teaching the children songs. Our theme song all summer long was " God has a plan for my life". Artyom and Vita did a very good job leading the children in the singing.
At night we had some fellowship with the teenagers, and one night we even showed the "Jesus" movie in Russian. On the last day that we were there we had a picnic for the children and their parents. We played some games......(look at those mountains in the distance)
... ate some good food...

...and Jason gave out Bibles to the children who came. Pray that God's Word will go into all these homes and will bear much fruit.
It was a hard "good bye" for Jessica and all her new-found friends. She made some good friends that she will remember for a long time.
They begged us to come back. Some of them even had tears in their eyes. We left very tired after a long summer, and headed back home to Osikova, 14 hours away. God gave us help and strength and we want to say thank you to everyone who prayed for us. I will have to say, every VBS, hour of work, and mile we traveled will be worth it if even one child makes it to heaven because we came.
All the children are showing you the craft that they made. Good bye western Ukraine and so ended our summer ministry.


Linda said...

Oh...that brings back lots of memories of doing mission trips with your dad!!

So thankful that God helped you this summer!

Diane said...

How I've enjoyed following you to all the VBS's through your pictures and reading your blog! It was a great priviledge being able to be with you all for the short time I was there. I have a new appreciation for all you do. I was blessed to learn that Vasea was able to attend-he was at the VBS I attended while there. So glad God helped work it out for him to go. It was good to see pictures of all of you I met while there. May God bless each one, and give you an abundant harvest of souls! You are continually in my thoughts and prayers.