Barskoe Gorodische and 3 days of Vacation Bible School:
Seasons... Solomon told us about these. Ecclesiastes 3:1 To every thing there is a season and a time to every purpose under the heaven...
It seems that every time Treasures went to Barskoe Gorodische, we felt as though we had finished our work. Seasons come and seasons go. As of our Christmas trip of 2007, we were quite sure our job was done, but the opportunity came for us to put the icing on the cake with a water filtration system . Their dirty, rusty water was something which troubled us from the beginning. The system is now up and running, providing clean water for washing clothes, bathing, drinking, and cooking.
We were constantly seeking God for when He was through at BG. We have been praying for signs and the discernment to recognize them. Having been our life for the last 10 years, it is like letting go of our child. And, in a sense, that is exactly what has happened.
Having been in constant communication with the BG director for 6 months, concerning this mission's projects, plans were moving right along. We spoke with her at 5:00 on Sunday afternoon to confirm the final details for Monday. Imagine our surprise when we arrived the next morning for a 3 day VBS and only 4 children were there.
Two kids needed hernia surgery, and had been taken to the hospital. Then, by the best explanation we could get, over the weekend there was a mass exodus of the remaining kids. We still do not understand why they left, nor could the director explain, because she was not there over the weekend. Perhaps the families thought it was something contagious. We never really figured out that one.
But, by anyone's standards, this should be considered a sign.
Stephanie, Donna, and I joined hands and prayed for wisdom. We did not want to act in haste, but we all immediately knew the season at Barskoe Gorodische had ended. We loaded the musical instruments and gifts, along with the team, back in the vans and continued to Suzdal, where we had a picnic lunch on the bank of the river, as we sang, "Our God is an Awesome God" and enjoyed the view of the beautiful onion domed churches. We found the peace of God in the middle of the storm of disappointment as we enjoyed the beautiful countryside.
Our Russian friends told us they had never seen any team react with such a spirit of peace, in such circumstances.