Faith Reflections

Ukraine

The news out of Ukraine is heavy on my heart and mind. There are moments where it does not seem real. Then, another post, photo, or report confirms it is very real, and there is little I can do to help these dear friends in this present danger at the hands of Putin.

My fear for them hovers at the edge, waiting to overwhelm. Then, I see yet another video or post from Ukrainian pastor friends. With smoke billows in the streets and warning sirens in the wind, they urge their fellow Ukrainians not to be afraid but rather trust God. They testify to God’s sovereignty and strength, to God’s goodness and faithfulness, to God’s protection and provision. It is not a fool’s message; it is a message of the faithful.

Friends, do not give up on Ukraine. Do not cease praying. It is not a fool’s work; it is the work of the faithful. God and God’s church will prevail.

KYIV, UKRAINE – Oct. 14, 2019: Defender’s Day of Ukraine. Thousands Ukrainians attend rally against surrender on the Independence Square in Kyiv, Ukraine.
The Church is Alive

This morning, our church wired money to a partner in Ukraine as the work of the church has only increased. They, and other houses of faith, are housing, feeding, and providing for refugees fleeing from the east. There will be more needs to come.

The church is alive and well in Ukraine. God’s Spirit empowers and equips for this – to proclaim Hope in despair, be Light in the darkness, and care for neighbor and stranger. Our prayers and support lift their arms and their spirits for the work God is calling them to in these days, weeks, and months. Be not afraid, they tell us. This is not a fool’s message. It is the message of the faithful.

“The church will go underground. We had that under the Soviet Union. The church did not forget what it means to be persecuted. We will rearrange, reorganize, and do what we always do; preach the gospel.”

Yarsolav “Slavik” Pyzh, President, Ukrainian Baptist Theological Seminary

“Blessed be the Lord, for he has wondrously shown his steadfast love to me when I was beset as a city under siege.” Psalm 31:21 NRSV

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