Sunday 27 May 2018 (Afternoon)
Sri Lankan Christian Fellowship
By Revd Rosemary Taylor and Janet Handy
The Sunday morning service was held at the Aqua Hotel because of the on-going situation with the authorities not giving the local Pentecostal church the permission to complete their church building. This has been going on for the last ten years. The foundation was laid then the authorities stopped the building work because members of the local Committee did not want a church in that prime area, so the fight continues. Please remember this church in your prayers.
Today was our last day on this mission trip. There was just a handful of the team left. God took the little and made it much! As the choir begun to sing the Holy Spirit magnified the voices so they sounded like the full body of the choir. There was such a wind of the Holy Spirit filling the room, that we sensed His presence in an awesome way!
As the choir led the praise and worship there was a liberty, people stood and worshipped freely opening their hearts to the move of the Holy Spirit.
The message went forth from Psalms 116:12-19, the key text was verse 14. Revd Taylor spoke about the importance of keeping vows and how God never breaks His vows to His people. Therefore, we can trust Him to do the impossible in our lives!
When the altar call was made there was such a tremendous response that not everyone could get to the front. People were queuing down the central aisle patiently waiting for prayer. God met their needs in a miraculous way. A lady afterwards testified of receiving
instant physical healing. She had a persistent spinal pain for six months which would not shift and was in constant debilitating pain. Immediately as hands were laid on her the pain left. Hallelujah!
God had prepared us for this beforehand through our daily Bible reading plan Acts 2:42-47
The healing of the lame man at the Gate Beautiful.
People were lining up to tell of what God had done in their bodies and personal lives, through healing and spiritual deliverance. Who is like unto our God! He gets all the glory because without Him we can do nothing!
Tomorrow Monday 4th September 2017 we return to London but we will never forget this glorious time of ministry as we were co-workers with the Lord Jesus Christ in Macedonia and Bulgaria.
We thank the pastors in Macedonia and Bulgaria for opening their doors and welcoming us in to their churches and Joel and Madeline for all their help in organising this trip.
It has been a great privilege sharing our experiences through this blog with our church family and friends. Thank you for standing with us in fervent prayer, God has heard and answered! AMEN!
We boarded the coach to Sungolare on a scorching hot evening to take an open- air meeting in a community with Turkish gypsies.
This area is a suburb 96 Kilometres from Burgas. On arrival, the coach parked near an open – field. The choir remained on the coach while the men set up for the meeting.
Hardly anyone was in sight apart from a few young men who stood watching silently and respectfully at a distance.
Before we came off the coach we were generously provided with cold bottled water which we desperately needed.
As the sound check began and the music filled the air people began to gather, coming from all directions, it was amazing! They brought their babies and children with them, a young girl was brought in a wheelchair. They came and introduced themselves to us shaking our hands and hugging us, although we did not understand what they were saying we soon realised they were telling us their names and wanted to know our names. When we responded by telling them our names they shook our hands and hugged us all over again smiling with great joy, expressed on their faces. We were instantly embraced in to the community; making us feel like family and not strangers. Husbands brought their mothers and wives and introduced them to us. Then they went for their children and brought them as well introducing them by name. We understood everything yet not a word was spoken in English!
When the choir began to sing it was like an open heaven! The expression of joy on their faces, the young girl in the wheelchair started laughing and moving to the music. People started clapping and raising their hands heavenward. Stools were brought out for the elderly to sit on everyone else stood, swaying to the music, tapping their feet and trying to sing along.
Intermittently horse drawn carts would pass by and the drivers would turn and pause intrigued by what was going on. A heavenly sound had come in to their community and it was drawing people, it seemed as if they could not resist the pull.
The Word of God was received with open hearts, people sat captivated. They burst in to applause because the message was so relevant to their situation and they could identify with it. Three older women sat crying and later shared that the Gospel had come to their community, they were overjoyed. A man kept repeating over and over again ‘thank you Jesus’. He was so encouraged by the choir. He went on to share that he had become a Christian three years ago and had prayed for a son, he had three daughters. God gave him a dream and showed him he would have a son, shortly after his wife became pregnant and later gave birth to a son. He did not want the choir to leave he kept calling us back and saying thank you Jesus and wanted to take photographs with the choir to capture the moment.
There was such liberty in the Spirit!
These people are very poor yet they purchased refreshing cold drinks and packed cakes and biscuits for us to eat. We know that this had to be a great sacrifice but they so wanted to express their love and appreciation. As the coach drove away they waved and blew kisses until the coach was out of sight.
Luke 4:18-19 (NKJ)
The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.
Friday 1 September 2017 provided an opportunity to see parts of Bulgaria in a relaxed mode.
Our first stop was Old Nesebar.
Nesebar is a city on the Black Sea Coast, located in Burgas Province often referred to as the ‘Pearl of the Black Sea’. Nesebar is a rich city-museum defined by more than three millennia of ever changing history. This is an ancient town full of medieval churches and is quite beautiful. It is a UNESCO world heritage site. The roads in and around the old town are quite narrow and cobbled. The best way to view the city is as we did by foot. The weather was ideal for meandering through the streets at a leisurely pace. Taking in the atmosphere and the friendliness of the local people. We were able to get a sense of normal, everyday life and culture as well as view and sample the local products. We were intrigued by the vast range of honey produced in the region and had a tasting session at one of the honey stalls, we experienced lavender honey, acacia honey, cumin honey and coriander honey to name just a few.