We celebrated Pentecost this morning worshipping at the Biserica Penticostala Tabor. They are on an eastern calendar, so their Easter and Pentecost are later than ours, and it was awesome to be reminded of how the Holy Spirit works in our lives. We have definitely seen evidence of that during our journey here. Tom preached about letting the joy and power and excitement of that first Pentecost described in Acts II be a part of our lives today, and we were challenged by his message of praying for more power to be a kinder person today than we were yesterday, a more generous person who seeks to give rather than take, a bolder Christian who willingly shares the gospel with those we come in contact with, and a people who will let the light and love of Jesus shine through us wherever we go.
After church, we headed to Felix, which had been used by the party leaders during the communist regime as a resort area because of all the hot springs in the area. We ate a delicious lunch there, and then went to a gypsy village to see where Hope 4 Kids is looking to partner in ministry with a Romanian outreach to make a difference in the lives of the Rromi (gypsy) people there. George and Alena are a young couple that Tom has known for many years, and they explained their vision for this village, which parallels the same kind of vision that has guided H4KI in our ministry in Uganda. We are excited about the prospects of bringing health, joy, love and dignity to this village over the next several years.
It was great fun playing with the children in the village, and we had shrieks of laughter and delight as we learned some of their games and sang songs together.
In the evening, we worshipped at Biserica Penticostala Betania, which is Pastor Teo’s church. Tom again shared a compelling message challenging us to tap into the power of God’s mercy and grace as He takes us out of our comfort zone and into the world. After his sermon, there was an opportunity for people to come forward to receive a fresh touch of God’s love and the power of the Holy Spirit in their lives. Tom prayed with a number of people, and one couple approached Tom after the worship service to tell him that God has put it on their hearts to go with him on one of the teams to Uganda. What a delight that was to see the power of God’s Holy Spirit at work in this place.
We finished the evening by a late-night stop at McDonalds on our way back to the hotel. We all agree, McDonalds tastes much better in Romania than back home (or is it just because we enjoyed the luxury of American food in the middle of our mission trip). Because it was Joe’s 11th birthday, Tom treated us to “birthday sundaes” as we celebrated Joe’s Sunday birthday.
In the morning, we leave for Cluj-Napoca, and we’re not sure what our internet connections will be like there. Even though we hope to be able to send out daily updates, it’s possible it will be very sporadic, so just know that we continue to rely on your prayers as we continue in this mission that God has called us to.