IMG 20190313 WA0012Since the beginning of the year we were thinking that it would be a good time to take a break, to rest and to contemplate on God's faith in our lives in the last ten years.

When we moved to Semoy in 2008, we thought we would only stay for two years, enough time for God to open our paths to go to Asal where I (Paul) worked before we married. The time passed and it took God to "shake" me a little to understand that our calling is not necessarily for a specific place (Asal), but about the people of this group who have not yet heard the Good News. It is not about us, but about God and these people whom He loves so much.

In December 2017, God responded to our prayers to visit Asal, but it was only for a very short visit.

The following are some things, when we were encouraged by God's faithfulness, guidance, prayers and friendship support.

The English Corner

Shortly after we settled in Semoy, we started inviting some Asal students to our home. We were sitting together at the table, helping them improve their English, discussing the challenges they had, and sharing the Gospel with them. Later, a colleague came up with the idea of starting something more organized, with more participants. And so started the English Corner. At first only a few students "dared" to attend, but after a few meetings they started to bring more and more friends and the ministry grew very fast. Many have had the opportunity to hear the Gospel, and very good relationships have been created between our students and our colleagues. We were even more encouraged to continue when we heard the testimony of two Christians from another city who also decided to follow Christ after a similar ministry. Now, for security reasons, we had to interrupt the Club activities, but we hope that next year we can continue or start something similar.

Design Company

IIn 2010, when we realized that all the doors to Asal were closed, we began to ask God for more clear guidance. The idea of a business seemed a good solution for the long term, but with no experience in this area, we were still waiting for an easier way to get the visa. A clear confirmation for us came by reading Exodus 31:1-11 when we understood that God wanted us to use all the gifts He gave us. And when we are faithful to what was entrusted to us, our work will have an impact at the spiritual level.

In 2013, we were able to buy an existing firm through a chain of miracles, especially in the financial field. The news about our company has spread extremely fast and over the last five years, we have managed to partnership with many small businesses, most of them in the area of tourism. With some of the managers we have very close relationships, and we do not miss a chance to share about how we live every aspect of our life by asking for God's guidance.

Now we have an operating approval until 2030, which theoretically should solve the visa problem, but the laws and regulations on foreigners are constantly changing in the country we live in and the only one we can trust is God.

The Souvenir Project

By 2012 when I (Roxana) asked God for more clarity about the ministries I had on my heart, the verse in Exodus 4:2 drew my attention and somehow I felt that I had to learn tailoring even though I had never put my hand on a sewing machine. After countless hours on YouTube, I managed to create some original products using traditional materials. In 2017 we registered this project under the existing company, which is a great answer to our prayers. Together with a colleague of ours, we hope that in 2019 we will start a training center for single mothers, widows and orphans in the city TR, about two hours away from Semoy. On the last TR trip we talked to a few women and four or five are interested in participating in such a program. I'm glad to see a small ray of light after so many years of prayer and waiting!

Impressions from Semoy

It’s about a media club that is still struggling to get to life. It is an old dream to create a context in which we want to bring together locals involved in the arts and the media and to share the Gospel with them in a more creative way. Together with some colleagues, we were able to organize practical activities, but it was quite complicated because we are all amateur and involved in other ministries, being very limited by time. The feedback of a young film director and cameramen from a local TV station was very encouraging. We watched together a few documentaries created by them and we had free discussions about culture, religion and various social issues. Now I pray that God will bring in our team (even on the short term) people who are gifted in arts and media.

Pray with us

  • As team, we feel it is time to start a ministry outside of Semoy and it seems TR city will be our focus over the next five years. We also believe we need to change strategy, and partnership with Chinese believers. It is a priority, especially in the current context where long-term visas are becoming more and more difficult. We continue to pray for favor from TR, ZK and JH authorities, and strategic partnerships with local churches in those areas. We need a lot of wisdom because the Chinese Church is going through a powerful wave of persecution again.
  • The business. It is a great blessing to get a visa through this platform (for us, it is the only way to get a visa), but we think we can have a greater spiritual impact, too. We pray that God will help us to start a business and management course for non-Christian business people to introduce Christian values from different spheres of society. Besides many others, we need Christian businessmen who can teach such courses
  • The Souvenirs Project. "L" is a Christian from a group with whom we work in TR, who accepted Christ five years ago. She seems to be a key person for the training center that we want to start next year. Pray for L. and her husband. Also for all the resources we need and favor from the authorities when we present the project.
  • More co-workers. Because of the lack of people we often find ourselves running in too many directions without too much efficiency. We pray for people with experience in business to help us create strategies, designers, people with marketing and media experience, or heart-seeking people to serve in this non-evangelistic ethnic group both on the long and short term.

 

Thank you for your prayers and all your support during these ten years. If you would like to know more about the ministry we are involved in, please contact us!

Much grace and lots of peace!

Pavel si Roxana

 

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