ALL praise to God…our merciful Father… He comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort others. -2 Cor. 1:3-4
We just absolutely ADORE God’s Kingdom, and how completely beautiful & contrary it is to the world’s kingdoms. So much on this earth tries to convince us to hoard. Stuff our pantries. Stuff our closets. Stuff our stomachs. Stuff our bank accounts.
…And then there’s God’s Kingdom, with God’s rules, which can basically be summed up in 3 words: Receive.Give.Repeat. Receive God’s love. Give love out. Repeat. Receive God’s comfort. Give comfort to others. Repeat. Receive material gifts from God. Give material blessings to others. Repeat. And the cycle is never-ending. At least thus far in our lives, we can honestly say we have never, when living as citizens of God’s culture, we have never come to the end of God’s supply. And so, since God’s supply of gifts for us never runs out, then our supply of gifts to give never runs out…and it becomes a double blessing!
A great example of this Double Blessing Law in God’s Kingdom is a recent, unbelievable gift we received from Him. (drumroll please…) A TRIP TO ISRAEL!!!!
Finally, after all these years of God planting in us a deeper & deeper love for His chosen people (& working endlessly to make the ministry of Bethel House to His people a reality), He’s finally giving us one of the deepest desires of our hearts – the chance to see the Holy Land with our own eyes & to walk in the land of our Lord & spiritual ancestors with our own feet!
One unsuspecting Sunday last month, on the way home from church, Bria & Krista had a short, random conversation about how much they were wanting to go to Israel. And later, on that same unsuspecting day, we were spending a relaxing evening at home when a friend of Krista’s posted on facebook about an airfare special – roundtrip tickets from Kyiv to Tel Aviv for only around $300! After years of asking God to let us go to Israel, we knew He was finally saying ‘yes’. (The story’s a bit longer & more detailed, but for the sake of time & space, we’ll just leave it at that.) Naturally, there was a lot of screaming & hugging & thanking God, and then we gathered up our savings & prepared to buy our tickets.
That was the ‘Receive‘ part. Little did we know, God had a ‘Give‘ opportunity hot & ready for us.
Before we could buy our tickets, God stopped us & told Mom that we needed to invite Lyuda to go with us. Lyuda is a beautiful sister in our church, whose husband/best friend just went Home to Jesus in May (after being diagnosed with brain cancer just 3 weeks earlier!). She has held onto the Lord through the pain of having to say goodbye to her Volodya, but it has been very, very difficult. So Mom called her, told her all about this unexpected adventure God was sending us on, & about His invitation for her to go with us. She asked Lyuda to pray about it & make sure this is what God was saying, but unfortunately, she needed to pray & listen really fast, because not knowing how long this airfare deal was going to last, we needed to buy the tickets that night. And, thankfully, Lyuda has a pretty clear connection to her Father, because it wasn’t too long before she called back, nearly overwhelmed. She told us that she’d asked God to tell her if He wanted her to go to Israel with us, and He told her to read Isaiah 66:13 – “As a mother comforts her child, so I will comfort you. You will be comforted in Jerusalem.”
How incredible is that? How incredibly kind is our God????
As if going to Israel isn’t exciting enough, God is letting us take a sister in Christ with us – a sister who is hurting & whom the God of Abraham, Isaac, & Jacob has promised to comfort in Jerusalem! And we get to be there to see the whole thing!
Receive. Give. Repeat.
There’s nothing quite like it!
We’ll be leaving on this adventure October 23rd, arriving in Israel on the 24th, & will be in the Land for 3 weeks!!! During that time period, our Ukraine visas will be expiring so we’ll have to get new ones at the Embassy in Jerusalem, and because of new visa laws the embassy workers are allowed to take up to 15 working days to process visas! Which, of course, is great in the sense that we get to (have to) spend 3 weeks in Israel, but a little daunting to think about the financial expenses that 3 weeks in Israel can incur. But, at the same time, God has ALWAYS proven that when we are faithful to follow Him into whatever He wants to take us into, He is ALWAYS faithful to provide for every single need (& most times, in His sheer kindness, He even goes beyond just ‘needs’, which is always so incredible!).
If you would like to be a part of this incredible “Double Blessing Law” with us, there is definitely plenty of room for anyone who wants to join in. We are using what little we have to help cover our expenses & Lyuda’s (who is struggling financially since her husband died), but as you can imagine, it’s not entirely enough. A quick breakdown of some of the specific expenses we’re looking at goes like this:
- Visas for Bria, Lindsay, & Krista – $200/each;
- Lyuda’s trip (food, lodging) – $1,000;
- Expenses for the Blessing girls (food, lodging) – $1,000/each.
- All of our financial needs (including Lyuda’s) to be provided for, so that money doesn’t become a stress factor during the trip;
- A quick & painless visa renewal process;
- That we will be completely tuned-in to the Spirit of God while we’re in the Holy Land – to go where He wants us to go, do what He wants us to do, say what He wants us to say, receive where He wants us to receive, give where He wants us to give,…
For financial gifts:
Tax-deductible donations can be made by mailing a check made out to “Blessing Ministry to Ukraine” (please attach a note to the check, indicating the donation is for Blessing Girls, but DO NOTput our names on the check) to:
Blessing Ministry to Ukraine
P.O. Box 1944
Stafford, TX 77497-1944
Donations can also be made online through Blessing Ministry’s blog site at http://blessingministry.wordpress.com/support-2/ (for first-time donations through PayPal, please send us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org informing us that the donation you have made is meant for us).
And as always, we thank you & pray for you!