Fall Fusions

Steven Wendel on October 30, 2017

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As I was observing our boys’ basketball practice, I was surprised to run across our dentists (husband and wife) who were also previously our neighbors.  We found that we shared a mutual connection through basketball with the other missionary family in town with whom we cooperate in numerous ministries.  This has happened several times in the past year, as we’ve seen our spheres of influence frequently converge.  The dentists were also surprised that we shared the mutual friend, which got them to be curious about how they know 2 American families with the same professions.  We had an interesting talk about Christian missionaries, faith, and their attitudes toward it.  They shared with me some impressions from a recent vacation they took to Italy, where they toured in the steps of the life of St. Francis of Assissi.  They were particularly taken with their visit to a particular cloister where the nuns are frequently reported to manifest the stigmata.  

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It’s curious how desperately the Czechs I know wish to see physical manifestations of the spiritual despite their personal unbelief.  They are rampantly preyed upon by psychics, tarot card readers, astrologists, and all manner of mystical eccentrics.  While professing the power of these swindlers, most will simultaneously deny the existence of God or a reasonable faith in Him.  Most have a categoric allergy to anything that smacks of traditional religion, yet crave some systematic approach to manipulating the spiritual world around them, which they will readily acknowledge while stripping God out of the equation.  It is all part of the paradoxical and unique spiritual climate of these Czech lands.  Of great concern to us, is that there are simply so few believers for the average Czech to rub shoulders with.  Meanwhile, we continue to see how 2 missionary families living amongst 120,000 inhabitants can have a frequent convergence and multiplication of influence.  Imagine what might be accomplished if 4 or 5 or 6 families even resolved to live among the most atheistic people in the world today and demonstrate the presence of love of Christ reaching out to them.  It is not a glamorous calling.  There are few encouragements and seldom is the fruit harvested, but let it not be said it is for lack of potential, it is for a lack of laborers.  Please pray that God would continue to call laborers to reach the precious people of this region who are exposed to so little light.