|English Camp 2009 Slovakia|
I had the awesome privilege to go to Lucenec, Slovakia in 2009 to teach at an English Camp which is very much like a Vacation Bible School here in America.
I say it was a privilege because it was completely of the Lord's doing and not mine. He selected me to partake in His work for two weeks in 2009.
God's Word of Comfort
I remember well my first full day in Lucenec. I was so very homesick, tired, and a little scared.
That Sunday morning, we attended church in downtown Lucenec at this little Baptist church. As I sat in the pews, listening to the choir sing, I began to pray to the Lord because I was so concerned.
I prayed because I was afraid that the children I would meet wouldn't like me. I was so afraid to stand up before these kids and have them hate me and not be pleased that I was their teacher.
I had doubts.
But then, the pastor stood up and asked us to open our Bibles as he began his sermon in Slovensko.
I tell you what, it was so wonderful to hear God's word spoken in another language like that. I saw and felt the Lord's presence there in that little church.
I began to be comforted.
I sat there and prayed, "Lord, what if these kids hate me? What if they don't like anything I have to say or give them?" I wept quietly.
What happened next really helped assuage all my fears that morning. The pastor began his sermon and asked us to read John 15:18.
"If the world hates you, you know that it has hated me before it hated you..."
And I instantly felt as thought the Lord was calming my fears by reminding me that He is there with me. He had already endured the hatred of the world for me.
It was as though He was there sitting with me, talking to me, comforting me with His words.
I cried tears of comfort that morning and I smiled as we sang more hymns.
The Power of God's Word
A couple of days later, English camp started and I had 17 kids in my classroom. As I stood before them and looked in their eyes and smiling faces, all my fears dissipated into joy. We had a great time together for those nine days!
As I prepare to head back to Slovakia English Camp again this summer, I am reminded how the Lord is already there doing a great work. I and my friends will arrive to take part in this work if only for a few days.
It will be a privilege to join in this work and celebrate with our brothers and sisters in Christ once again. And as I sit in the pews of that lovely church, I will open God's word and read John 15:18 again...and smile.
Because I know my Savior already endured the hatred for me. He will be with me there again in that classroom through the happy times and the hard times. He will give me the words to say and the smile on my face.
That's the power of God's word. It reminds us...comforts us...corrects our thinking...and empowers us to do a great work.
Your turn: how has God's word brought you comfort or calmed your fears recently? I'd love to hear about it and be encouraged.