Saturday, May 1, 2010

Lost in Romania

I arrived in Bucharest, Romaina last night by prop plane from Budapest to a welcome sign in English. We drove through the capital for 3/4 of an hour (there are only 3 major highways in Romania) before we finally got to a highway leading out. We drove past the largest "public" building in the world, the "People's Palace" completed by the communists while food was being rationed etc. The revolution occured in 1989 I think and the country is trying to catch up from 40 years of deterioration.
After a 2 1/2 hour drive we got here about midnight to a rustic, rural but beautiful area of Romania. Today I was asked to go to the nearest city to drive a car back for someone. It was great to see the city of Pitesti (300,000) about 1/2 hour from the Bible Institute property. However, I was sure I could get back O.K. because the other driver had things to do in the city. I got back most of the way and then missed a road off the main road and took the next one. For the next hour I had a wonderful tour of the country of Romania through various small villages, past horse drawn carts, true haystacks, gypies wagons, etc. The only problem was I had no phone, no phone numbers, no map, I couldn't remember the name of the village near the property (which it out on top of a hill outside the village), and all the signs were in Romanian and the few people I tried to ask didn't speak English. Other than that I had a great time.
I'm usually pretty good with finding my way even in foreign countries and after about 1 1/2 hours I found the road I had missed the first time and arrived back for a late lunch and some relieved people who thought their bible teacher was missing for good!
Tomorrow I have been asked to speak at a church in the morning and another in the evening. I'd appreciate prayer for good translation and that the Lord would give me His message for both churches. Please pray.
My Mac computer can't connect to a phone line/USB here so I'm not sure how much I'll be able to update this blog but I'll try to see if I can use the office computer every second day.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Sunglasses for the Song of Solomon!

Today we started studying the Song of Songs and I mentioned yesterday that it might be best if they wore sunglasses for some of the explicit parts. Today they showed up in class all wearing glasses!
We had three good classes and ended with a student presentation which was very good. Tomorrow all the other students will be presenting some lessons from the Book of Proverbs in song, drama, drawing, etc. It is always a fun time when they do this.
My cough and sore throat remain but I sense the Lord using me despite some discomfort.
This morning for breakfast we had hot-dogs (16 inches long! so you have to cut them in two) with buns and ketchup, and also some macaroni salad. This would be a lunch in North America but here the breakfasts are often similar to lunch. There was a table with a bowl of cereal for anyone who couldn't handle a hot-dog at 7:20 am!
Every time I come here to Word of Life Hungary I am thankful to the Lord for this ministry. I believe the churches of Hungary will be changed significantly in the years to come because of the training being received here. Take a look at the website: You may know of some young person who is wanting to study the Bible for a year or two and yet wants an adventure to be part of the time. They could get it all here! In fact, there are students from 11 different countries here this year including Canada and the USA. Even with travel the cost is very affordable.
Tomorrow I teach and then leave for Romania. I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

20 Years in Tóalmás for Word of Life

This year marks 20 years that Word of Life has been in Hungary running the summer camp program. Next month they will have a special celebration for what has been accomplished for the Lord and in His strength. I took a picture of the back of the "castle" so you could see how beautiful it is. However, up close, there is much work to be done on the building. They just got the roof replaced (it is a historical building and so they replaced it with the original design). Perhaps some reading this blog could come over here some day and spend some time helping out in the painting, repairing, and building that goes on all the time.
The Bible College started later (1995) than the camp but it has grown along with a number of other ministries here. I started coming here in 2002 and this is my sixth time teaching young people in Hungary. Today I completed Ecclesiastes and tomorrow I start with the Song of Songs. I'm sure the next two days will be interesting!
Today I struggled with a cold and sore throat so I took an afternoon nap to see if my body can't fight this so it doesn't get any worse. When I walked into town yesterday I took a picture down the main street and one in the cemetery too. Just wanted to.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Safe at Word of Life, Hungary

I'm safely in my room at the Word of Life "castle" in Hungary. My room is on the second floor and to the right of the entrance. Isn't it a beautiful building that the Lord has given for ministry here, a building that just a few decades ago was hosting communist events!
An uneventful trip via Paris with no sign of an "ash cloud" anywhere this week! I forgot my camera for the trip but I do have my iPhone so small pictures from it will have to do for my blog. The picture outside the plane window was taken as we were coming down to land near Budapest. The river divides Buda and Pest.
The second pictures shows some of the communist era block apartment buildings as well as some of the other homes of the city.
After arriving, I had a great soup and salad dinner at the Kádárs who were good friends from the years that László (Laci) went to DTS. Now with three children and a dog, he and Szandra live in a great home in the village of Tolamas (~4,000 people, 10% of whom are Gypsys). Laci teaches at the Bible College here and directs the summer camps where almost 800 kids come every summer.
Tomorrow morning 9 am (2 am "my" Dallas time) I'll start teaching the first of three lectures tomorrow on Ecclesiastes. At 5 pm I'll have the privilege of preaching at the weekly student/staff/faculty chapel service. Pray for a special message from the Lord that I can pass on and for good physical stamina in the midst of jet lag.
I got a picture emailed to me that a student took last week in the classroom as I was teaching from Texas. I'll post it below.