Put away your microscope. this is no science experiment. this is not a yearbook for your mother. this is a magazine created for our creator. ATOM is a lookback at MOTA: Marriage of the Arts. But what does a magazine about art have to do with tiny little molecules? God created these tiny things called atoms. By themselves they're just microscopic particles. But when bonded together they create all matter in the universe. If God could do that through atoms... what could he do with people willing to be bonded together in Him? Here is a look at what God did in the lives of over 100 artists. Using their gifts and talents, they engaged with thousands worldwide. There was no formula. Atom is a magazine about the small things that matter. It reveals God's creation through art, writing and photography. It may explode your mind so be prepared. MOTA is now and the future: art for the glory of god
photo by julie brown
N-CHIEF EDITOR-I Fraser Amy
DITOR PHOTO E h bac Chad Stro
UE Mc CAIG MATTHEW . 6-7, 30-37 p p Davis A s h l ey 24-28, , 19 , 6 -1 pp. 1-3, 15 7, 50-53, 56 -4 28-41, 46 Reid Whitney -45, 4 4 1, -1 p. 4-5, 8 covers, p editing/prepress , 48-49
10 180 degrees
Kate Luce p p. 5 4
Ryan Burns3 42-4 pp. 20-21, Kong Noelle pp. 17-18 Snader Charlene 22-23, 55 p p. z Sarah Bet12 p p. lz Laurin Ho 29 p p. E YDELOTT TAYLOR A 6 2 , 16 . p p N N A LM A H JÖRG T -1 pp. 13 4
16 answering god's call 20 Price tag
EunJin Lee bel m E ma Go lz Ho Laurin eifer K Karla Gilbertson Karissa lei ualaule AlIssa T
19 ABOUT THE COVER: After sharing my testimony at a small village church in Moldova, I had a brief encounter with the women on the cover. She rushed up to me, all love, kisses and fur, thanking me in Russian for coming to their service. During my time in Moldova, I had hoped all along to get a portrait that captured the beauty of the elderly villagers and I knew this was my chance. She graciously allowed me to take her photo before vanishing into the snowy outdoors. cover photo by KELSEY CALLIHAN back cover photo by COOPER BLADE inside cover photo by DAN AX
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32 life letters 40 Er weiĂ&#x; was er tut 46 sewn back together 44 hope & the god of second chances 4 MOTA 5 WHY Herrnhut 6 the greatest injustice 9 faith walk 12 duck dinner 13 prophetic art 14 drawing on a conversation 15 taste of freedom
17 art & restoration 24 petrucia, god's prayer warrior 31 this is africa 36 by his grace 38 leading mark to the savior 42 what do i take? 26 youth with awkward missions 48 the leprosy villages
An Introduction I am sitting in the base café writing a letter, perfecting each line, editing text and re-wording sentences. To my left sits a friend who is sketching, re-tracing lines and adding shading. I'm listening to music being played by someone in the music track, the chords and harmonies fill my ears. As I sit and write, I realize that we are all engaging in something beautiful – the creative process. Our school, Marriage of the Arts (MOTA) is another picture of the body of Christ, or the Church. The body takes shape when we use our creative abilities to accomplish God’s purposes. Each part has its own function, and they are all important, unique, and dependent on one another. Musicians play music and proclaim God’s peace and love; dancers move to the beat and express beauty and passion with each movement. Photographers capture moments and share these images with graphic designers who create bold messages. Filmmakers watch, document and frame the creative process, inspiring audiences with image and sound. The result is synergistic; creativity fueling further creativity. All this is built within interdependency; a marriage. As a follower of Christ, I appreciate that I have brothers and sisters all over the world. So many times I think about Jesus’ disciples who were constantly dependent on the hospitality of the early church. As a missionary, I have been welcomed by churches and pastors all over Europe. I have worshiped with them and sang songs of praise in their native languages. Although the words might be different, the melodies are usually familiar, reminding me that despite our differences, we all worship the same God. I’ve come to a greater understanding of the symbiotic relationship that God originally designed between missionaries and the Church when Jesus told His disciples “Whatever town or village you enter, search for some worthy person there and stay at his house until you leave. If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it” (Matthew 10:11,13). God has continually been faithful in bringing me to worthy people that I can encourage. In exchange, I have been offered hospitality that allows me to complete the mission work God has prepared in advance for me.
Being a part of Youth with a Mission has taught me the importance of interdependency and community...like a wave made up of many drops.
Being a part of Youth With A Mission (YWAM) has taught me the importance of interdependency and community. YWAM was started by Loren Cunningham in 1960, with the intention “To know God and to make Him known.” After receiving a vision of waves crashing onto every nation on earth, Loren felt the need to start a mission organization that would mobilize young people to that end. The result has indeed been waves. YWAM now has a presence in over 180 countries throughout the world, sharing God’s love in unique and varied waves. It couldn’t have been accomplished in the same way had it been performed by an isolated individual. Like a wave made up of many drops, YWAM is built on the idea of young missionaries coming together and fueling their passions to create something larger than they could have ever imagined on their own. story by KATE LUCE
photo by CHRIS BROOKS
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To most, Herrnhut would appear to be an inconsequential town of just under 5,000 residents in Saxony, Germany. It's a quite place, but those who know the Lord will find that this little town of quaint homes and idyllic pastures, has more life and light than the bustling streets of downtown Berlin. Herrnhut, which means “The Lord’s watchful care,” was established in 1722 by a group of Moravian refugees. They came from, what is today, the Czech Republic, and fled because of persecution of their Protestant faith by the Catholic nobility. As the meaning of its name implies, the town was founded on the people’s complete submission to, and trust in, God. A spiritual revival in 1727 resulted in the Moravian’s empowerment in the Holy Spirit. For the next century, Herrnhut became the center of a major Christian movement that has left its mark in the history of Christianity and world missions.
The Moravians demonstrated the Christian example in every aspect of their lives. They held a chain of prayer that continued unceasingly for 100 years and sent out hundreds of missionaries, who evangelized by assimilating to the people and sharing the Word in ways they could understand. They led simple communal lives, always giving and sharing, and emphasized the importance of a personal walk with God. The passionate, bold, and unorthodox approach of the Moravians also led to much persecution and numerous martyrs. This is the spirit that Herrnhut has been built upon, and this is the legacy that the town carries down. What can be seen of the Moravians in Herrnhut today, is the church and its faithful congregation, the cemetery where the forefathers lay, and the traditional symbol, the Moravian Star. But beneath the surface are the centuries of prayers amassed and the working of the same Holy Spirit who gave the Moravians their drive. Today, another movement is rising from this little town. It is composed of young men and women from all around the world who have come together in Herrnhut to reach out to all nations and share the gospel. That YWAM set its base in Herrnhut of all towns is clearly the fine and divine work of the Holy Spirit. In some sense, everyone who comes to YWAM Herrnhut can be considered the fruit of the seeds sown by the Moravians centuries back and now the fruits of Herrnhut are gathering to continue the ministry of this town. Standing on the shoulder of giants gone by, there is much blessing in YWAM Herrnhut that gives the potential to do great works for the Kingdom of God. story by EUNJIN LEE
Here we were: a bunch of young crazy artists in the middle of eastnowhere Germany. It was the first day of DTS and after the opening worship session, we were told that we would be sleeping outside, seeking God's heart for refugees. We were given plastic, string, and two wooden stakes, split up into groups and encouraged to build shelters for the night. The staff kept the simulation going for a few days and each night we would debrief and learn about refugee camps in the world. Through this exercise I learnt that I can make a pretty sweet tent, but mostly that sleeping on the cold wet ground, and being restricted, confined and cut off from all outside communication, does not even begin to amount to the kind of discomfort and suffering refugees go through daily. There are millions upon millions of refugees worldwide. Many of them have lost family members in unspeakable violence and had to flee from everything they know. Sometimes this means walking hundreds of miles, often barefoot, just to wait in line for weeks in hope of gaining access to a place where they can feel an ounce of safety. Many arrive at the camps exhausted, parched, starved and defeated. Sometimes it takes weeks for a new arrival to receive food rations. Sickness, boredom, and dissention are rampant. I heard a story of some Somalian refugees rioting because the conditions in their
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THE GREATEST INJUSTICE camp were so bad. The people of Tunisia (where the camp is located) were so frustrated with the rioting, that they burnt the whole camp to the ground. All of the stories we heard were shocking but what was the most difficult for me to swallow, was the realization that before that first night of the DTS ‘refugee camp’, I had never thought about refugees. Not once had I thought about how pervasive this injustice is, how heartbreaking each individual’s story is or how much God’s heart breaks for their loneliness and hardship. As the school continued, I got fired up about issues, without realizing the main injustice, until one day it clicked. Many of us want to be activists but we don't realize that the greatest injustice is when the Creator's own creations don't know or love Him. As we share the gospel message globally, and God changes the hearts and lives we've touched
through our servitude, the strongholds of all other injustices will be weakened. As Christ's light shines brighter and as repentance increases, change will come. Righteousness will revolutionize. Sex trafficking, starvation, forced labor, child abuse, poverty, prostitution, mutilation, murder, human trafficking, abortion, rape, racism, and other injustices will take a fatal blow as nations humble themselves before the Lord. It is then that justice and freedom can reign. story by KARISSA NICHOLS photos by DAN AX
OPEN YOUR EARS
CHECK OUT NEW RELEASES FROM THESE JUSTICE DRIVEN ARTISTS:
ELLA JANE IT'S ALL FOR LOVE ellajanemusic.com
LIZ & THE LIONS LEARNING TO BE DANGEROUS lizandthelions.bandcamp.com
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Faith Walk A bowl of soup A basket of bread Could have brought money Trusted God instead Thumbin' down the road In the middle of the city Stop and took a rest We needed a ride, not pity Pile grass into a bed A pillow would have been cheating Started getting cold Till we lost all feeling Five vagabond pilgrims Drunk on Jesus Praying over towns In hopes they need us Running on faith by day Smile as we make our way When did the time pass us by Never stopped to question why
song by BENJAMIN NOBLE photo by ELIANNE BORDEAUX
180째 It was just Mum and I for the first 6 years of my life, but over the next few years my parents both remarried and had more children. I lived with my Mum and Dad in New Zealand and flew to Australia at least once each year to spend time with my father.
I don't remember feeling God's existance during most of my childhood; I just remember being unhappy pretty much all of the time. Because both families had new children, I felt like I was a loose end that made everything more complicated. I felt that, because my parents weren't right together, that I was made of conflict, and would therefore always be in a state of frustration within myself. I had to go to church until I was about 14, when I was relieved to be able to decide for myself. As far as I had seen, Christians were not happy people, most of them were weird and God was a very vague concept that mostly made me uncomfortable. From this point on, my life was about heading towards a career, finding a relationship and experiencing as much of life as possible. So I did it all. I got qualified in graphic design, had boyfriends and partied. I got in plenty of trouble and many dangerous situations, once landing myself in the hospital and another time in jail. I struggled with anger, depression and suicidal thoughts. As I achieved everything I had set out to, emptiness enveloped me and more and more frequently God would bug me. He was prompting me to discover if there was more; if He really existed. I would do research on many beliefs and I would try to get my head around the idea and label of Christianity. A book by C.S. Lewis called 'Mere Christianity,' explained many things in a way that was pivotal in my reconsideration of Christian faith. At one point my Dad said that it was as simple as making a choice and that my head would catch up. I decided I had nothing to lose, but not a lot changed after this, except that I had an ever increasing disatisfaction with the life I was living.
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This brings me to Germany. I had always wanted to be fluent in German and so I decided to quit my job. I would move to Australia, where the money was better, and save to get myself up to Europe. I moved with my boyfriend and worked two jobs. In this time we tried an increasing amount of drugs including pills, weed, MDMA, speed, acid, cocaine and prescription medications. He would always source and pay for the drugs, so for me it was a case of letting him do what he wanted and being open to trying anything. I drew the line, however, when one night I came home to find him with my flatmates trying to hollow out a lightbulb because they were low on speed. Whenever we would get high, I would spend most of my time thinking about God and feeling the hopelessness of what we were doing. I had experienced this on many occassions over the years. One night, on speed, I was compelled to get on my knees in the middle of a busy street. I began to pray. I just didn't really care what anyone around me thought, the pull of God was getting stronger all the time. As my goal to make it to Germany started to become a reality, I started looking into a DTS with YWAM. I'd heard about the organization through family, but never thought I would ever do something like a Discipleship Training School. I discovered MOTA and relalised that it combined my desire to find a purpose for my creativity, with learning the German language and seeking God once and for all. It wasn't easy going from one extreme to the other overnight. I had few of my usual freedoms and I was spending every second of every day thinking, talking and learning about God. It was almost impossible. There were many times I wanted to leave and I struggled with putting myself under leadership. What I came to learn over weeks of discovering more of God, changed my life. Personal encounters and revelations came continually, and friendships formed that helped me through the hardest times. Gradually I wanted to let go of everything I had been building for myself and empty my life of all the things that were more important than God. There came a point when I was so empty that I broke down and told God that I did not have enough of Him to compensate for what I had lost. This began three days of the Holy Spirit drawing me in, teaching me, using me, and giving me a stream of revelations. Drugs really are a counterfiet for the presence of God. In the kitchen of our apartment, the fire of God got so much for me that I had to start giving it to others and a worship and prayer session turned into many people encountering God's presence in different ways. This was all so natural in the moment, but it was nothing I had ever known to be possible, let alone experienced before. I could literally feel the flow of the Spirit as fire from my abdomen, right through my body, out through my hands and into people in varying amounts as I prayed over them. My outreach in Thailand was more than I ever expected. Many things happened in this time, most significantly meeting James,* who you can read about on page 44 and 45. I had to learn a while ago that you can't judge God by people. However, as a testament to the many ways He works, I experienced DTS as a group of individuals willingly sacrificing their time to facilitate God's work in the lives of the students that came to our school. While at times there were things I disagreed with, what it all really came down to, was having an enviornment for all kinds of people with all kinds of struggles, to take the time to really seek God. I am now planning to do a secondary school and from there continue pursuing a life with Jesus at the centre and the supernatural as the normal. story and photo by WHITNEY Reid
DUCK DINNER On our second Wednesday of the DTS, the leaders invited us to embark on a 'faith walk'. To leave Herrnhut and go. That’s it. No details. Nothing. Just go wherever God leads; bless others; practice faith. The rules were simple- take little; just a backpack with the basic necessities, your passport and 1 Euro. No more. Depend; expect God to provide. We split into teams and set out on our adventure. Four days with next to no money. I listened to this invitation with a dread growing in my stomach. There was nothing in me that wanted to do it. I was at the end of my rope. I was tired, the day before had been very emotional and I was still sick, getting over a bad cold. On top of that, I found out that not only would I be going on this faith walk, but I would be leading one of the teams. You have got to be kidding me, God! I don’t want this; I can’t do this!
overwhelmed with thankfulness. It was bliss and everyone in the team had huge smiles plastered on their faces like it was Christmas morning. I was giddy with joy and disbelief. Our God is alive and He was proving me and my past of silence wrong. He was redefining the skewed image I had of Him.
After arriving in Löbau, we started wandering the streets. It was aimless wandering, but I have been learning that God sometimes uses 'aimless wandering' to get us exactly where He wants us to be at the precise moment He wants us to be there. Two of the people on our team, Felix and Miriam, saw an elderly lady struggling with her groceries. They left their bags with us and helped walk the lady home. The lady was so thankful for the help that she gave them 10 Euros.
That meal was just the beginning. Through a long series of events, we ended up arriving on the doorstep of the YMCA in Löbau and were able to help them with several projects. The YMCA not only provided us every meal, but let us stay at the center. We found out later that this YMCA had been trying to get in contact with our YWAM base for about 3 years to create a partnership, yet time after time the attempt fell through. I truly believe God led us to that doorstep to help rebuild the relationship between YWAM and the YMCA; to forge a bridge for a joint ministry in the future.
On his way back to us, Felix stopped at a restaurant to ask if they had some old bread we could eat. It was about 8:30pm, and we hadn’t eaten since lunch. The cook came out and said the most unexpected thing: come back in 15 minutes and he would prepare a special duck dinner that we could eat for 1.50 Euro each. A duck dinner! 1.50 Euro x 6 = 9 Euro. The elderly lady had provided dinner for all of us! At the fancy restaurant, I felt so undeserving, sitting at the candlelit table in my grungy clothes, but I was
The faith walk was a truly transformative experience for me; it was much more than just a physical walk. It marked the start of a new inner reality; of God replacing past experiences with new ones. I challenge you. Go. Take the risk. Be willing to be desperate and experience this God who provides. story by KARISSA GILBERTSON
photo by ERWIN VAN OOSTEROM
Being faced with this walk of faith triggered so many doubts and hurts from my past – of all the times God didn’t seem to intervene. Did I truly believe that God is alive, active, and detailed? I didn’t know if I believed, but I wanted to. I met with the people I had been assigned to and we begged for God to show up. Then we set off – praying and walking. We decided to try hitchhiking to the nearest town of Löbau.
This was when good things began to happen. As we stood by the road, trying to figure out how 6 people were going to fit in a car, two cars pulled up within 2 minutes of each other. One car had space for 4 people; the other had space for 2. Exactly the number of seats we needed.
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story & art by PETER FARRINGTON
One of my fine art assignments on outreach was to create a piece of prophetic artwork for someone I met during ministry. I expected this project to be something I'd have to put a lot of conscious effort and thought into. I thought it would be just as much about my own ability as it was God's but I couldn't have been more wrong! As our team prayed before our first day of street evangelism in Mae Sai, a city on the northern border of Thailand, I was absent-mindedly doodling on a scrap of paper. By the time we'd finished praying, I had a simple sketch of a face. I wondered if the man that I'd drawn would be someone that God would lead us to. Throughout that day of ministry, I kept my eyes peeled for someone who looked like my sketch. As our day drew to an end, we walked past a shop where there was a young man sitting outside alone. At first glance I thought this might be my guy, so I walked into the shop and pretended to be looking for something while trying to get a good look at his face. The similarity to the sketch was uncanny, so we approached him and thrust the picture in his face. He looked startled as I awkwardly tried
to explain that God had given us the picture because He wanted us to find him. The man didn't speak a word of English, so we had to go and find our translator. On my way back to the shop, I strongly sensed that fear had a massive hold on this man’s mind and that I should pray for him. The man’s name is Woom Mwue and he is from an almost completely unreached people group in Myanmar. While praying for him, I felt God give me a picture of what He is longing to do in Woom Mwue's life. Woom Mwue gave us his number saying that he'd love to hang out sometime. When we said goodbye, he had a huge grin on his face. His countenance had completely changed during the ten minutes we'd been with him. A few nights later we met up for dinner. I'd drawn a second picture showing what I'd felt while praying for Woom Mwue. As I gave him the picture and explained what it meant, his eyes watered up. I told him how God wanted to free him from fear and to flood his mind with peace. Woom Mwue responded by telling me how he had almost died in a car accident a few years ago and that he has 'had
a lot on his mind' ever since. I then shared my own testimony of how God had healed my heart and how I've found lasting pleasure in Him. During our conversation, I discovered that Woom Mwue had never heard of Jesus. This astonished me. The mention of the cross, the Garden of Eden, or anything biblical meant absolutely nothing to him. In the West, most people would at least have a vague idea of what the Gospel is about. He told me that he wanted to hear about Jesus, so we arranged to meet again the following evening. Sharing the Gospel with someone who has never heard it before was a big challenge and an incredible privilege. It was bizarre to feel so much of God's love for someone I had no means of directly speaking to. My Thai stretched no further than 'have a nice sweet dream', yet I had such a strong desire to see him step into the freedom that God has for him. It was incredibly fulfilling to play a part in what God was doing. This was the humbling thing I experienced over and over again on outreach – the moments when I saw God move weren’t when I was confident in my abilities. The acute awareness of my own shortcomings and the need for Him were the gateway for Him to work.
When we left Mae Sai, we gave Woom Mwue a Bible in his language, and introduced him to our contact who is now discipling him. As we said goodbye, he gave me a big hug and said his first words in English to me: "Nice to meet you." One of my prayers throughout DTS has been that God would take me deeper in prophetic gifts, particularly using my art. I never imagined this would result in telling a lonely, searching Burmese man about Jesus. Until recently, my artwork has been fueled by my own desires and a need to find identity and affirmation. I am finally discovering the potential of our gifts when we give God the reigns and allow Him to be our inspiration and the One we seek satisfaction in.
DRAWING ON A CONVERSATION story by ASHLEY DAVIS
Wanting to combine art and evangelism, our team decided to host a series of art seminars. I felt like God was asking me to teach on using art as an extension of worship. "But you know that's what I am struggling to do God!" was the thought running through my head. Despite my uncertainty, I decided to do what was being asked of me and just teach about what I do know: prayer and responding to God. I wasn't confident but I was willing. Our team put on a seminar at a Bible college in Chisinau, Moldova and I had two students show up to my table. They were both very talented at drawing, so I encouraged them to respond to God using a pencil and paper. I had them take a moment and pray, encouraging them to ask God to give them a picture. My teammate Dan, who was helping me, wisely added that God sometimes just wants you to start responding. Even if there wasn't a clear picture, that just by moving your pencil around God could turn it into something. That is exactly what happened. I prayed and watched as Dan played his guitar and our two students began to move their pencils. After a few minutes I asked them to talk about what they drew. They explained, and Dan and I sat a little dumbfounded as we realized that the words accompanying their pictures were directly related to prayers our team had been praying, before and during, our time in Moldova. It was a beautiful marriage of God speaking through us, and them continuing a conversation entirely orchestrated by the Holy Spirit. After the seminar, one of the students, Irina, approached one of my teammates and thanked her for putting on the seminar. Irina said that she had never known how to communicate with God, and was amazed that she could use something as personal as art to express herself in prayer. I couldn't help but think that even if I had come halfway around the world for just one day, helping somebody else know that God is alive, active and deeply desiring communication with His children is so worth it.
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story by kelsey callihan photo by bogdan Hermann
Anxiety. Fear. These two words described the majority of my past twenty-two years. Growing up I was always over thinking situations to the point of making myself physically ill. As my fear snowballed, I became afraid of groups of people and common social situations. I began to fear having allergic reactions to food, regardless of whether I had eaten it before or not. My anxiety reached its worst point the summer before DTS and I had no idea how I would ever make it to Germany if I could barely get out of bed to go to the grocery store. The only thing that gave me the strength to pack my bags and board the plane was the assurance that I knew God was calling me to go.
My first week of DTS I was hit with a confronting reality. A reality that I had allowed fear and anxiety to be a part of who I was for years, and yet, my Creator God, in his unfailing love is more than able to take away every anxiety I feel. I had lived for years under this lie that I would have to deal with anxiety for the rest of my life. God made it clear that I did not have to worry about having an allergic reaction to food and I began to feel freedom seep in. As my fear subsided my adventurous heart began to flourish and I was able to feel like who I was created to be. My identity was no longer defined by my anxiety. Outreach in Southeast
Europe tested me in every way possible, but I was able to do things that five months ago seemed unimaginable to me. I ate unique cultural food, played with kids in the dirt and even drank out of a Moldovan village well. Along with those things, I was going into each day unsure of the outcome. None of this would have been remotely possible for me, without God and his faithfulness. It is freedom that my heart desired, and it is now freedom that I feel. For the first time, I can look to the future unafraid of what will come next. Freedom. Adventure.
ANSWERING GOD'S CALL story by JAMES TREG HUDSON
The morning light just started to seep through a blanket of grey clouds when I boarded the bus for Kiev, Ukraine. I had finished an English certification course in Prague and was on my way to my first teaching job. As one of the first passengers to arrive, I chose a window seat and absent-mindedly watched people flit in and out of buildings and buses, stomping through puddles of morning rain. The bus filled up quickly as people stowed luggage and jostled for seats, chattering away in Czech, Ukrainian, and Russian. As we left the bus station, the TV monitors turned on, and I crossed my fingers for something with English subtitles. Instead, a cheesy 70’s theme song started to play over the speakers, and the show title flashed onto the screen in Russian. I sat through the first episode, hoping that something else would follow, but I soon realized that I was about to be subjected to 24-hours of Sovietera soap operas on a bus where nobody spoke English. Seeking an escape, I reached into my bag for my iPod and turned it on- it was dead. At this point, I was about to surrender to the impending boredom of the day-long bus ride without anything to do or anyone
to talk to, when I spotted something else in my bag. I had forgotten I had a copy of ATOM, the DTS magazine from YWAM Herrnhut. I had recently visited Herrnhut where I heard about the Marriage of the Arts DTS and was told that I should apply. It sounded like a great idea, but I had just paid to get my TEFL certification. Facing imminent student loan payments from home, mission work was not really a priority. Even though I had already written MOTA off in my mind, I opened the magazine and started reading. Two hours later, I was still pouring over the stories from past students’ outreaches, and thoughts began to form in my mind. Maybe this is for me? Maybe this is why God had led me back to Europe? At the time, I thought it was my over-active imagination, but now I know that God began a process in me that day. I say this with an emphasis on process because I did not immediately submit to God’s will. I still had major doubts that He would provide for me and that this was his will for my life, but God is always faithful and patient with me. In August, I finally decided to do the September MOTA DTS, with barely any finances covered. It was a step of faith that I do not regret. Over the last seven months, God has completely blown me away. It’s been extremely challenging, but I
I was in the music track and I had the opportunity to explore what it means to be a Christian musician and songwriter. I came into the MOTA as a pianist and singer but since transporting a piano on outreach is difficult, I learned to play the ukulele. If you would like to check out my music or buy my E.P. you can follow the link. jamestreghudson.bandcamp.com
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would do it all over again. I’ve been able to experience God and to see him work in ways that I had never imagined. I’ve come to realize that we serve a God who cares and loves us more deeply than we could ever know, and He is passionate about raising people up to let the rest of the world know this love. I think that millions of Christians hear God’s call every day, but ignore it or explain it away. It’s easy to think that it is someone else’s job and that we’re simply called to a secure future and a comfortable life, but we’re not. We’re called to so much more than that, and it’s our job to let the world know they are the creation of a living God who wants a relationship with them. I don’t know you, I don’t know where you’re at in life or what you want, but I do know that God can use you.
One of the most beautiful things I find about art is that it has a unique ability to soothe the soul. When I can turn on some music and sit down for an indefinite period of time and just do handcrafts, my entire being can relax. By the time I am finished I almost always feel better than when I began. In this way art works as a tool for redemption and healing, and it is a shame that this kind of art therapy is not more utilized in the world. Unexpectedly, I found that one of the most inspiring examples of using art as a tool for healing took place in Chisinau, the capital city of Moldova. In Chisinau my outreach team got to work with a ministry called Beginning of Life (www.bol.md), an organization which helps victims of human trafficking. One of the ways they help is through art. Girls who have been through traumatic experiences are able to make dolls and toys that they can sell. Through making the item they can release
things they have been through. After I learned about this part of their ministry, I immediately wanted to help or support them in any way I could. This desire became reality very soon after, and I was able to go with a group to make about 30 teddy bears! It was a wonderful time of creativity, and once we were finished each of us had made a set of bears which uniquely reflected our personalities. Without even really trying, we had put pieces of ourselves in each of those bears. I can only imagine the pride that the women feel when they are able to complete one, and see how it is a reflection of who they are.
art this way, was special. We were also able to be an encouragement to the workers in the ministry. Even if nothing else happened from that time, knowing that our presence was an encouragement and an affirmation to such a beautiful form of ministry is more than enough for me to be completely satisfied. story by CHARLENE SNADER
Art is being used in this ministry to help restore the identity and confidence that has been stolen from these women. I have known the healing powers of art in my own life, and being able to experience
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As we worked in Moldova, the team picked up a few recipies along the way. Moldova is a tiny nation that is full of people from various cultures. During our outreach there, we got to spend time with several people from Uzbekistan. In that time we were treated to a delicious and simple meal called Plov. There are several versions of Plov, as ingredients and methods vary from nation to nation, but this is the Uzbeki basic recipe.
We were praying with a homeless man on the street in N端rnberg, when I noticed a frail figure stop and position himself in my periphery. In uncertain English he said, "I need your help." I explained to him that we were missionaries and we had no money to give him but that we would do what we could. He explained brokenly that his name was Nicolae, he was 26 and from Romania. At hearing this, I got excited that we might actually be able to help somehow because one of our team mates was from Romania. As we walked back to where we were staying, we managed to gather from
Nicolae that he had gotten into a fight with some friends and that he was trying to get away from them. The look of fear on his fragile, sunken face made any hint of skepticism I had of the validity of his story fade away. We reached the place where we were staying and introduced Nicolae to Bogdan, our teammate, and sat patiently as they talked. You could tell that Nicolae was relieved to speak to someone in his native tongue. As they got deeper into conversation Bogdan began to translate for us, and our hearts, like Nicolae's story, began to unravel. Nicolae had grown up with a very abusive, alcoholic father. He had a mother and four siblings but two had died very young and the other two had committed suicide as a result of their fathers abuse. He loved
The Europe Forum on Human Trafficking will unite a diverse group who are committed to fighting for the freedom and dignity of all human beings. At the forum, anti-trafficking activists and leaders will share information, inspiration and ideas. Together we will form solutions and continue to build a solid network of people committed to seeing the end to this injustice in Europe. For more information, visit www.notforsalecampain.org or 'like' YWAM is Not For Sale on facebook.
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his mother very much though, and continued to work to support her. He had been working for a Roma (Gypsy) family in Romania: cooking, cleaning and caring for their children for several months. He liked them and trusted them so when they told him of an opportunity to move to Germany with them, and make more money, he agreed to go. However, upon arriving in Germany he was sold, like a household item, and found himself with another family that he did not know. They beat him repeatedly, and made him do things that he was not proud of. He finally saw a chance to get away, so he started running.
it, but couldn't, and didn't quite understand why. He asked Bogdan what was special about us and we explained that we simply loved Jesus and that we wanted to share that love with others. He spoke again, with a look of confusion mixed with surprise, and said that he had been to churches before but we weren't like any of the people he had met there. He liked that we were kind to each other; that we spoke to each other in love.
wanted him to feel as safe and loved as possible until we could help find a solution for him. In the end God blessed us with enough money and the perfect timing to get Nicolae on a bus back to his village in Romania. It was a quick goodbye but a slightly slower revelation. We had prayed for strength and wisdom to fight the injustice called human trafficking, we had prayed that God would give us something to do… and He answered. story by ASHLEY DAVIS
Nicolae spent the next 48 hours eating meals with us, talking and even doing ministry with us. We
When we met Nicolae, he had been wandering the streets of Nürnberg for two days, trying to find some sort of safety, when he saw us praying and something inside him said 'stop'. He had tried to ignore
THE REALITY // During our time in Eastern Europe we were continually confronted by the reality of human trafficking, forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation. Frontline workers in Greece talked about girls trafficked from rafficking is estimated to be billion Bulgaria being kept in vaulted rooms countries worldwide and of women in prostitution selling their industry affecting babies for drug money. At an integration home in Moldova, the girls talked about growing up in an orphanage; how it would close down every summer, leaving the kids “People trafficking is the fastest growing means by which people vulnerable to exploitation. Government are enslaved, the fastest growing international crime, and one of run orphanages in Moldova finish their the largest sources of income for organized crime” duty of care to the child when they turn 16, throwing them out onto the streets with the equivalent of 30 euros. Many are picked up by traffickers, coercing them into the sex industry of Western Europe and beyond.
by NATE O'HEARN
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by DELAJA KUHN
by JENNIFER BROCK
by JULIA HERTER
by ZOEY BRYANT by PETER FARRINGTON
by CAITLIN BURKE
by SAARA VALLINEVA
by KARISSA NICHOLS //
story by nicole redmond & Meagan HildebranDt
uring our outreach in Sighisoara, Romania, I met Patrucia, a thirty-five year old woman suffering muscular dystrophy. God graciously gave some of us the chance to spend time with her and her parents, Peter and Lanuta, and brother Flaurine, in their home. Eight years ago, Patrucia suffered a stroke that left her blind and bedridden. As a result of her condition, Patrucia breathes through a tracheotomy tube. Although this hinders her speech, it does not prevent her from being a prayer warrior for others. Patrucia and her family live lives of generosity and faith, with genuine joy in their hearts. They greeted us kindly with pastries and warm smiles. When we met Patrucia, the first words she spoke in English were “Thank you for coming. God bless you”. Despite the obvious cultural differences and language barriers, we felt an instant connection with her through the Holy Spirit, as a part of the Body of Christ. \\ ATOM MAGAZINE
Over the course of the afternoon we heard a deeper explanation of Patrucia’s family's situation. Peter said that Patrucia’s suction machine, which is used to clear the mucus out of her trache, had recently broken. Being an electrician, Peter was able to make some adjustments to the machine to allow it to work temporarily. But these changes were unreliable for an extended period of time, and with Patrucia’s life on the line, the family now found themselves in a vulnerable position. The machine had been generously given to them many years ago, and they were unable to afford a new one. Moreover, both Peter and Lanuta had their own medical conditions, they were unable to afford treatment for. It was difficult for us to understand these circumstances because in our own countries, if we had similar problems, the healthcare system and government support quickly resolved the issues. Patrucia’s
family, however, had to find their own solution. After an emotional prayer time with the family and seeing their tremendous faith and love, we headed back home with a new urgency sparked by God. Something needed to be done. We were determined not to leave Romania without a change. So many situations like this are pushed to the side but as a team, we refused to forget this family. Through contacts and research, we found some options for the family’s medical needs. We were ready to purchase the new suction machine and supplies, when we got the news that a doctor in Holland had bought them a brand new one! We were blown away at God's answer to prayer and praised God for his goodness.
photos by Meagan HildebranDt
I was talking to a Hells Angel biker in a bar in Greece and I told him I had spent the afternoon riding around Thessaloniki on the back of a moped. He was unimpressed. -Chad I wanted to give back to the family that I was staying with in a rural village, and as I had my ukulele with me, I decided to perform a song for them. I had just started tuning my instrument when the 93 year old Grandfather got up and said disdainfully through the translator, "Is that a child's toy?" as he walked out of the room. -Treg I was trying on a traditional fur hat with a tie under the chin. I tied a bow, which became a very tight double knot. I struggled with it for 25 minutes. I felt like my head was being eaten by a bear. -Amy
During a visit to a village a few teammates and I had the honor of staying with an elderly couple in their cozy home. They were such characters that we wanted to capture them on film forever so we asked if we could take their photo. As they only spoke Russian, we had to ask via translator, and we were puzzled as to why they looked confused. They asked why we would want their photos and we explained that we just wanted something to remember them by. Later that night, Ana, the lady of the house, plopped a huge bag of old photos down in front of us and motioned for us to go through them as she said something to our translator. Being girls, and indulging in the nostalgia, we sifted through stacks of family photos and beautiful black and white portraits "oohing" and "ahhing". Our translator turned to us and said "Ana asked for you to show her the photos you choose before you take them." We all stopped in a state of confusion and asked her to clarify. When we had asked to "take their photographs" earlier, it had translated to us literally wanting to take photographs from them. By the time we got it sorted out though, poor Ana was so excited for us to have a piece of her history that we literally couldn't refuse. So I am now the proud owner of a photo of her husband’s ex-girlfriend and a portrait of a Finnish flapper. -Ashley I got legitimately proposed to but I don’t want to talk about it. -Jenna
I was walking into the apartment we were staying at, and on my way into the elevator, this family waved me to go in before them, so I got on and left the door open to wait for them; they, however, had different plans. They pulled down their son’s pants and let him pee into the hallway. -Corey I was in the middle of praying for a lady when she began breastfeeding her child. -Dom We saw our house mom walk out of the shower in a towel; she just stopped and stared at us. -Cooper \\ ATOM MAGAZINE
The tribal ladies decided to put some necklaces on us one day; we thanked them and told them the necklaces were pretty. After that, they decided to put more necklaces on us and then they rubbed coconut oil on our necks to make them shinier -Simona
We were in a leper colony and I was in charge of the team phone. I went to use the squatty but it was in a really small and extremely dark room. Suddenly, I heard a sound from down the hole. I realized I'd dropped our only means of communication down the toilet. I fished around for it with my hand and tried to use it but it didn’t work. I called my dad the next day, crying, because I had stuck my hand in a pile of poop for a phone that wound up not working, but he just found the whole situation hilarious. So hilarious, in fact, that he told his entire office about it. The good thing was that the office donated money for a new phone. -Julianne
This is the story of our 10-week journey of faith through South Eastern Europe. story by CHAD STROBACH & AMY FRASER
C: This summer I felt God had called me to do great things; He had wanted me to get over an even bigger mountain with Him. As the year progressed I was beginning to see that He wanted me to give up everything and choose to be led by Him as a leader of an outreach team. He wanted for me to understand that humility is exactly the way it is described in Philippians 2:7 “…but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.” The reference means Jesus was ‘shoe-less' and in that time this represented a slave. I was asked to humble myself to the shoe-less knee bent form at the foot of the Lord Almighty and serve him as leader of an outreach.
A: I was exhausted from a non-stop couple of years and was planning to go home for a family reunion. I never intended to lead an outreach, but as I sat on my bed booking my ticket home I felt like I would be missing out on what God was wanting to do with me, with the team, for him. As I prayed for the outreach God asked me to continue to lay down my rights. He was relentless with his desire for my humility; that for him to be able to move, He needed me to be obedient to him and not to strive for effectiveness. He wanted to be the strength in my weakness, the energy in my exhaustion, and the clarity in my confusion. So I committed to what He was asking of me, to uncertainty, and to a winter in Eastern Europe. C: We were a team of 26 people deciding to step out in faith, with the belief that God's net would catch us when we leaped. We left Herrnhut, Germany with few contacts, nothing set up for housing, and little money to go on. We left with a will and desire that only God could create in his followers. We left understanding that we would fail, that we would get lost and that we were being foolish
by the worlds standards. But in all of it, we believed God asked us to be available and to trust him. So we went and travelled to areas that the world at large has forgotten about. We went to meet people that are crying out for something to fill the holes in their hearts. A: We were eager to hit the road; to be meeting these people; to be sharing and encouraging. The other teams, already half a world away, started emailing in with their stories of slum revivals in Kenya and disaster relief in Thailand. We, on the other hand, had nowhere to go and nowhere to stay, so we jumped. Our first stop: Nüremberg. We arrived on a windy night, a week before Christmas, and we had to find somewhere to stay in a city neither of us knew. God loves a desperate heart and a surrendered will and so graciously shone his face on us. The CVJM (YMCA) gave us their best piece of floor, for which we were very grateful. I remember walking to get the students, crazy happy to tell them we wouldn't be sleeping outside tonight, and talking about God being the God of small things when Chad looked down. On
the ground was a new 10 euro bill. It was in that moment, I knew we were being looked after by not just a capable provider, but a Father. C: At the end of the week, we had to leave the Nüremberg CVJM. We felt like God was asking us to go out in faith for accomodation and provision again, but we knew we couldn't force faith on the students. We asked them to help carry the burden of responsibility. They would take ownership of the path He had called us for. So we prayed a new prayer, not one that was asking for foretold knowledge or understanding of what was next, but one that asked, 'God where do you want us to go?' That is a dangerous question because you’re leaving it up to God. In Proverbs 30: 7-9 Agur son of Jakeh says a prayer: 7 Two things I ask of you; deny them not to me before I die: 8 Remove far from me falsehood and lying; give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that is needful for me, 9 lest I be full and deny you and say, "Who is the LORD?" or lest I be poor and steal and profane the name of my God. A: We went to Serbia (page 59), and from there to Macedonia and then Greece. In Macedonia we were put in contact with a church that would host us in Thessaloniki. We were surprised and blessed by how organized and responsible God was allowing us to be with these contacts pre-arranged. When we showed up, the church told us about the vision they had to start a house of prayer
and how they had been inspired after learning about the movement from Herrnhut all those years ago. When they heard that a group of 26 missionaries from Herrnhut needed a place to stay, they knew that it could only be described as a divine appointment; another piece of the puzzle falling into place, helping us all see the face of God clearer. C: God is never satisfied by how much we know of his goodness. He asked us to push back against the box we were putting him in. We were due to transition to Moldova as a team but Amy and I had a meeting in Budapest and would be away for four days. We felt that God wanted to show the students in a different way that He was a God who guides and protects them, that they didn't need their leaders as a security blanket. So we left for the meeting in Budapest and the students were expected to close out the ministries they had started in Romania. They would then travel to Moldova where they had the responsibility to find accommodation there for us all.
to being more missions focused two weeks prior to our arrival, he greeted us like we were heaven sent. We could never have planned this from Germany. We could never have planned the joy the students experienced after God led them to a place where we could stay. Only God could have planned this time. There are many more stories of how God had clearly gone before us and it still blows us away how God orchestrated this time. At the beginning we had no idea what this outreach would look like, we only knew that He wanted us to be dependent on him. By the end, all of us had grown in our faith. We knew that missions was not an 'event', that it was a lifestyle. All that is required of us is adandonment to his will, and the faith that He will walk with us on the journey.
A: We met the students at the station in Moldova. Excitement and desperation hung in the air as we prayed for a place to stay; for a church or organization to connect with. We knew God was moving, we just couldn't see it yet. We saw it though, the first time we met Pavel. We found him through a maze of unanswered phone calls, dead end Google searches and addresses to non-existent buildings. As pastor of a church that had committed
photo by MEAGAN HILDEBRANT
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No matter how magnificent, great and glorious all the kings and rulers of this earth might be, or have been, one day their faces and their fame will fade away just like dust in the wind. On that day the only true King over all will come back.
All kings will fade design by Laurin Holz
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by DAN AX
by JENIFER NOEL
by LAURA QUAM
by DOMINIK KRรถKER
by NANCY ALEKSIC
THIS IS AFRICA //
Today, 930 million people - nearly one-third of all urban-dwellers - live in the slums. In Nairobi, Kenya 60% of residents call the slums home.
According to the second United Nations World Water Development Report, half the world's population now lives in urban areas, compared with less than 15 percent in 1900 Furthermore, the world's urban population increased more than tenfold in the twentieth century. Today, 930 million people - nearly one-third of all urban dwellers - live in slums. People living in urban areas contend with numerous disadvantages, especially in relation to water. In an urban slum, a family would use on average between five and 10 litres of water per day. A middle- or high-income household in the same city, however, would use between 50 and 150 litres per day, according to the UN report. This lack of access to water has a knock-on affect on health. Of the 1.8 million people who die of diarrhea each year, 90 percent are children under age five. According to the UN Education, Cultural and Scientific Organization, this figure could be cut by 45 percent with improved access to water, particularly in slums like Kibera. \\ ATOM MAGAZINE
story by NATE PLATE / photo by NANCY ALEKSIC left page photos by NANCY ALEKSIC & DOMINIK KRรถKER
LIFE LETTERS I smelt the slums before I saw them. Human excrement mixed with the sour aroma of burning trash stung the insides of my nostrils. Filth, poverty and a patch-work of rusty tin shacks. The streets were an ashtray of bad habits. Trash was heaped in alleyways and piled near the entrances of houses. Plastic bags, broken dolls and dirty books. I wondered how many eyes read the stories, then remembered that most of the people here were illiterate so these books were just used as fuel for the fires they cooked their meals over. The garbage that littered the streets was a visual metaphor for their lives. Chaos and struggle mixed with dirty water. I imagined each piece of trash as a letter every person had personally written to God, each piece of trash a prayer in an envelope addressed to the Almighty. Each piece of litter, a plea, a biography of the struggle that was as evident on their faces as it was on the street. Too bad the postman was on a permanent vacation. It is in these alleyways children gather. I thought back to my kindergarten years and made the comparison. Hot black tires, their toys; shiny G.I. Joe dolls, mine. Plastic bags that would hold my garbage became the sheets that children sleep under as they lay their heads on dirt floors to dream about the places their parents whisper about on cold nights. Places far away from where they were; places they may never know. I walked through the dirt and mud in the alleyway of this slum. It was a corridor to another world. Completely alien, entirely foreign. We came for ministry, we came to encourage families that needed more than we could give. Surrounded by the leftovers of
humanity, I momentarily forgot my purpose. In this place, people die of diseases that can be cured by one visit to a doctor. In this place people scribble over the words 'hope' and 'future' in the dictionary. It was in this place, in the heart of poverty, that God challenged me to find beauty; to look at this world through eyes heavenly inspired. I was challenged to find humanity amongst the filth and beauty in the mundane. I set out on this task with a heaviness in my heart. Hoping for the best but expecting the worst. At first I found nothing, then sound filtered through my eardrums and registered in my brain. Laughter. Little volcanoes of joy, erupting spontaneously from the mouth. It was embarrassing that these people could find joy despite their circumstances while I complain about things as trivial as slow internet connection. I continued searching and I found beauty in a man named Daniel Oma, he was 46 years old, his breath reeked of vodka but he still took his hat off in respect to God when I prayed with him. I found beauty on the wallsdrawings and scribbles. These hieroglyphics written in the language of the soul. Humanity is a strange thing, the need to express oneself transcends cultures and societies. These walls were alive with figures of people drawn in chalk. Automobiles and alphabet letters. Primitive and honest. The handwriting of children, fingerprints of a generation overlooked by everyone except themselves and God. Every step I took the beauty was more perceivable, I just had to seek it; to search for it. Like many trials in life we can find hope amidst the pain. We just need to open our eyes to it.
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by DOMINIK KRÖKER
by DOMINIK KRÖKER
by LAURA QUAM
by DAN AX
top DAN AX bottom DOMINIK KRÖKER
BY HIS GRACE \\ ATOM MAGAZINE
â€œSo have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops.â€? Matthew 10:26 Kakuma, Kenya was one of the last places we expected ourselves to be on outreach. We got government clearance in five days; it usually takes weeks. Most of the stories are of unthinkable tragedy. One man, Nicodemus, stood out from all of them. This is his story: I, Nicodemus, was born in the Republic of Congo in a place called Kibangula, along a boundary between Fizi and Kabambare. I am saved, and therefore a Christian; serving the Lord as a praise and worship leader in my church with my family. My parents were serving the Lord as pastors in a Methodist church and in my father's church, which was in the area of Fizi, there were 3 church elders that were from a different tribe to him. Because of tribalism, they never wanted my father to be the pastor of their church and were planning on his removal from the office. At the time, tribal clashes erupted with an aim to overthrow the then president, Mobutli Sesseceko. These clashes forced us to relocate to an otherwise safe place called Porini. All this was done in vain because within a twinkle of an eye, my whole family of 8 (except one sister) and I were surrounded by a vigilanti group from the tribe of Kjanamaji. They passed a verdict that we deserved to die because we are from the tribe Nyamulenga. Among the bandit group, there were the three elders that had told the bandits my father was a pastor
of the Nyamulenga tribe and not Wamajimaji. My father was ordered to rape his own daughters but he declined, which therefore ended in his head being severed off. I was the only boy among my family; I was forced to commit incest with my sisters and mom but I declined. The bandits then started to gang-rape my sisters and mother; I was sodomized by fifteen men. After the incident, they killed my mom and sisters by the sword and I was ordered to dig up eight graves for the eight corpses. Due to pain, I could not be quick and consequently one of them speared my foot which started bleeding profusely. Since I could not keep up with the pace they demanded, they shot me in the abdomen and I fell down unconscious. By God's grace, the bullet only tore off the abdominal skin but they thought I was dead. I woke up two hours later and limped all the way to town. On arrival I was arrested by Rwandan forces on the pretext that I belonged to the Majimaji terror group. However, after a thorough investigation, they offered me medical assistance and bus fare to Nyarugusu Camp in Tanzania. There I met my sister (who wasnâ€™t present at the massacre) and her child. We made up our minds to travel to Lugufu, where I re-united with my wife and the rest of my family. After a period of 4 months, the Tanzanian government closed down Lugufu Refugee Camp, and so I was forced to seek refuge in a local church, where I cared for my family for 10 years. All through that time it was a struggle for my family. The government of Tanzania demanded all Congolese to go back to the Congo since they declared that
“peace had been restored”. In 2008, I went back to the Congo with my family to a place called Uvira. Tragedy struck us on on the first day of 2009. My wife sent her young sister, Rashidi, to get green vegetables from a grocery store. On the way, army officers called her on the pretext that they wanted her to buy them mandazi (sweet bread). As the child was reaching for the money, they grabbed her, tied her and dragged her to their cottage. They told all the police officers whoever wanted her could have her, they raped her until she bled profusely and fell unconscious. We got concerned when darkness started setting in. We searched for Rashidi everywhere but it was in vain. We reported the matter to the police who, after a thorough search, said they found her in the army barracks of the Majimaji group. We were called to come the barrack office by the army officers that supposedly rescuedher but were actually the culprits. I had no choice but to sell the few household goods I had for her release. We took her to a hospital, but we realized this incidence was a frequent occurrence in the area. This forced us to relocate back to my native land. I left some of my children in the guardianship of a pastor who had given us accommodation during our time there. It was safer for my children to stay there rather than in my birthplace. On arrival at my ancestral house, I was shocked to find my father's parcel of land had been occupied by the Kjanajimaji tribe. My wife, sister and I were questioned, told to explain our nationality and tribe. After a long examination, a verdict
was passed that we did not belong to that community. The very elders who served, and subsequently killed my family, denied having known my father. They claimed we were Rwandan and so we were cheated of my father's home. We sought out refuge from an old family friend. Life forced me to look for a way to provide for my wife, sister and one of my children. There weren’t many ways to obtain food and so we decided to go fishing every night in my father's lily pond. Unfortunately, one night while fishing, the Wamajimaji army surrounded us and tied us up. My wife (who was holding our baby), my sister and I were beaten aimlessly. We were hurried off to a place called Mpori where they gang raped my sister and wife in shifts. They bled uncontrollably. I was also sodomized by 10 men. Several gang members wanted to thrust the baby against a tree trunk but, by God's grace one member disagreed, thus saving the child’s life. My sister and I were then separated from my wife and were dragged deep into the desert. There they started to knife my sister, her screams to run energized my feet and I started running with my arms still tied. They shot at me with a machine gun but by God's grace, no bullet touched me. I struggled all the way to Uvira town; there I was blessed by a Good Samaritan who was also running from a war zone. My wife was separated from my sister and me and the gang continued raping her until she became unconscious. She regained consciousness after 8 hours. As weak as she was, she searched for her baby but found her unconscious also. She didn't think of her or her child's state, but
sought a way out. It was 5am by the time she was able to flee and little did she know that God was sending her guardian angels in this time of distress. All along she thought her baby was dead but miraculously the baby opened her eyes. When she was on the road she was able to get a car ride from a Catholic pastor to take her to Uvira. We were able to re-unite in the Uvira hospital which was 50 km away from where we originally were. On recovery, I was able to raise enough money from friends in the hospital to cross the border into Burundi (to pick up my children), Rwanda, Uganda and finally into Kenya. When we arrived in Nairobi, the Kenyan police officers arrested us thinking we were smugglers. We were interrogated but released later. I told them partly what had happened and the police officers took us to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Nairobi. The UNHCR Nairobi office arranged transport for us to Kakuma. On arrival I was allocated a place to put up my temporary house which I am still living in this day. I believe I have shared with you my story not to seek assistance but to reveal to you how God's unfailing love and grace is sufficient to sustain and keep us from all troubles and tribulation. Nicodemus' is not alone in his suffering. These harassments are still happening inside the Congo and elsewhere in east Africa. People may find a temporary safe haven in a refugee camp but they still have dreams that a better life is possible. “For by His grace you have been saved…” Ephesians 2:8.
story by Nicodemus translated by Bramwel Sifuna edited by Natasha Scott photo by Dan Ax
"Some ministries call for people to reach the needy, starving people of Africa. Some call for people to go to those places that are less known, but are just as desperate for food. Food is not always a physical thing, but the soul can starve just as easily as the body."
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I am sitting in a foreign bookstore, in China, avoiding the cold outside. I have been trying to work on my art project but am facing a block instead. None of my scribbles lead to anything so in my discouragement, I turn to knitting. It feels as though this time is useless. There is no inspiration flowing through my fingers and I dread ending the day with nothing but a few meaningless sketches and a bunch of frustrated prayers. Suddenly, a young, teenage boy speaks to me in a soft voice, asking to leave his things next to me as he looks for something. When he returns, I start chatting with him and he introduces himself as Mark. Mark shares his believes in Roman gods, which immediately prompts me to lead the conversation towards my God; the One God. He has never heard of my God and the story of Jesus before. I look into his eyes as I share the greatness of God, the strength of His love for us and how it moved Jesus to humble himself to come to earth and die the most shameful death. As I speak, Mark’s eyes shine with desperation and I can see his mind visibly searching for questions. His main reactions to my words are awestruck exclamations. There is a moment of complete silence. Mark holds my Bible in his
hands and fingers through the first few pages until he reaches Genesis, chapter one. After reading for some time, he turns to me and asks, “How was God created? If He created the earth, then how was He created?” I tell him that He has always existed and that He is the creator of everything. Mark’s face is in full concentration mode, attempting to understand all the information that is being given to him. Suddenly, I feel inspired to share the way I see God in comparison to my Dad. I tell him that knowing God is like having a best friend or a loving father. I share how I have a wonderful relationship with my earthly father and how blessed I am. He takes care of me, loves me, and listens to me when I need him to. However, when I travel away from home, he is not always there when I need to go to him with my questions, worries or even my joys. I explain that God is always there. That He is my Father and friend and that I can bring everything to Him because He is with me constantly. Mark’s face shows the most awestruck look I have ever seen. I feel humbled by the level of his fascination in comparison with the
quiet composure that fills me. He touches the pages again and he begins to read over a section titled, “How to Know God Personally.” I ask if he has questions and I can see his mind going into deep thought. I assume he is trying to think of what to ask, while translating his words into English before finally speaking them out. Eventually he looks straight into my eyes and asks, “Can people change religions?” “Do you want to?” I ask back. A simple nod of his head answers my question and I tell him that he can. I explain that there are no rituals or ceremonies that he has to go through but only needs to give his life to God and trust in Him. I offer to pray with him and quickly decide just to pray over him when he says, “I don’t know what to say!” After we pray, he leaves to buy a Bible downstairs and then travel back to his home. God’s timing is so unpredictable. When a government attempts to control the nation’s religion, it doesn’t stop God’s Spirit from moving. The spirit moves when we are generous with our time, a simple conversation can lead someone to the Savior. Truthfully, God works in wondrous ways. story by CAITLIN BURKE photo by ELIANNE BORDEAUX
Er weiß was er tut artikel von SONJA KROSS
ir haben bereits in vielerlei Hinsicht gesehen, wie Gott uns benutzt hat, in China zu dienen. Die letzten Wochen haben wir als geschlossenes Team in Peking verbracht, sind mit vielen Leuten in Kontakt gekommen, haben an einer christlichen Schule unterrichtet und mehr darüber gelernt, was es heißt als Christ in einem immer noch kommunistischen Land zu leben. Mein persönliches Highlight begann aber schon viel früher, als ich noch gar keinen Schritt in dieses Land gesetzt hatte... Wie aus dem Nichts heraus bekam ich eine Woche vor Abflug den Kontakt einer deutschen Missionarin, die in China lebt und dort mit einem Waisenhaus zusammen arbeitet. Ich wusste, dass Gott uns speziell Kinder auf's Herz gelegt hat, aber was daraus entstehen würde hätte ich zu diesem Zeitpunkt nicht für möglich gehalten! Auf meine Frage, ob sie eventuell Hilfe gebrauchen könnte meinte sie, dass wir wie gerufen kämen und sie bereits schon zu Gott gebetet hatte, dass er ihr Helfer schicken würde, nachdem alle ihre Helferinnen während des chinesischen Neujahrs weg sind und sie genau in diesem Zeitraum dringend Hilfe benötigt. Das ließen wir uns nicht zweimal sagen – klarer konnte Gott schon gar nicht mehr reden! Unsere Reise führte uns in eine kleinere Stadt im Süden Chinas. Es war schön die ländlichen Gebiete ein wenig mehr kennenzulernen und auch Völkergruppen wie die "Miau". In dieser Zeit habe ich gelernt das Land und die Leute mehr und mehr zu verstehen. Oft waren wir in Dörfern unterwegs, in denen Menschen noch nie etwas vom Evangelium gehört haben und immer noch irgendwelchen Göttern und Hexendoktoren opfern oder ihre Ahnen verehren. Die Ein-Kind-Regelung lastet auch schwer auf dem Land und wir haben Kinder gesehen, die ohne Schulbildung aufwachsen, Frauen, die gezwungen werden ihre Babies abzutreiben und welche im Schnitt schon 4-5 Abtreibungen hinter sich haben! Es ist einfach unglaublich traurig welche Kontrolle der Staat auf das Individuum ausübt und wie diesen Menschen ihre Persönlichkeit geraubt wird. Ganz besonders haben mir die Kinder, um die wir uns gekümmert haben das Herz gebrochen. Ein 7 Monate altes Baby in den Armen zu halten und dabei zu erfahren, dass dieses Kind bei lebendigem Leib begraben wurde, nachdem die Eltern erfahren haben, dass sein Gehirn nur zur Hälfte funktioniert kann man sich in Deutschland einfach nicht vorstellen. Kinder, die nicht "perfekt" sind werden einfach weggeworfen! Die meisten der Kinder aus dem Waisenhaus sind auch gar keine richtigen Waisen, sondern wurden vielmehr von ihren Eltern verbannt und jedes von ihnen hat seine eigene traurige Geschichte.
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nur irgend eine Überlebenschance hat. Wir haben dagegen angebetet und so kam es, dass die OP viele Stunden später durchgeführt werden konnte und unser kleiner Mann überlebt hat! Von diesem Zeitpunkt an haben wir uns verpflichtet rund um die Uhr im Krankenhaus zu sein und uns um Luka zu kümmern. Man muss dazu sagen, dass die medizinische Versorgung bei weitem nicht mit der in Deutschland zu vergleichen ist und Krankenschwestern nur im Notfall eingesetzt werden. Umso größer war unsere Verantwortung, dessen waren wir uns bewusst. Ich kann mich noch genau an meine erste Nachtwache erinnern: Ich sitze um 3 Uhr morgens in einem Krankenhaus, irgendwo in China, habe ein kleines Baby im Brutkasten, dessen Herzschlag auf dem Bildschirm auf und ab springt. Ich füttere, wickele es und verarzte die Wunde, als ob es das normalste auf der Welt ist. Es gab diesen Moment, in dem ich mir der Dimension und Verantwortung erst bewusst wurde, leicht Panik
bekommen habe und mich auf einmal in dieser fremden, kalten Welt wieder fand, in der ich kein bisschen von der Sprache verstand und einfach überfordert war. Im nächsten Moment kam dann aber wieder Gottes tiefer Friede über mich und die Freude über dieses kleine Leben, das so wertvoll ist in Gottes Augen! In dieser Zeit konnten wir ein richtiges Zeugnis in diesem Krankenhaus sein und auch für die Ärzte war es erstaunlich zu sehen, wie schnell Luka sich erholt hat. Gottes Timing war wieder einmal perfekt! Wenn wir nicht genau in der Zeit gekommen wären, hätte unsere Missionarin gar keine Kapazitäten gehabt, sich um ein Baby zu kümmern und für eine Woche 24 Stunden im Krankenhaus zu verbringen. Ein gewöhnlicher Tag wird außergewöhnlich, wenn wir mit Gott rechnen und seiner Stimme folgen!
photo von SONJA KROSS & COREY PIGG
Nach einer Weile verstanden wir immer mehr, warum Gott uns gerade zu diesem Zeitpunkt in diese Stadt gerufen hat. Ein Tag wie jeder andere, so schien es, doch an diesem Tag wollte Gott ein kleines Leben retten! Ein paar Leute aus meinem Team sind in das Waisenhaus und fanden ein Baby, das gerade einmal 4-5 Tage alt war in extrem schlechter Verfassung vor. Sein Bauch war aufgebläht und seine Haut gelb. In diesem Fall musste schnell gehandelt werden! Unsere Missionarin brachte das Baby in ein Krankenhaus und von diesem Moment sah es aus, als ob sich die ganze Welt gegen dieses kleine Leben stellen würde. Luka, so haben wir ihn genannt, ist ein Down-Syndrom-Kind und hatte zudem keinen Anus, was heißt, dass er nichts ausscheiden konnte. Anstatt jedoch Hoffnung zu verbreitet haben die Ärzte die ganze Zeit nur Tod über seinem Leben ausgesprochen und gesagt, dass jemand wie er doch sowieso keinen Wert oder auch
Deeeeeep V Hipsters keep the breeze flowin'.
Modest is hottest.
Sun screen Don’t get burned.
Hair wrap Think you look like a local. You don't.
Keep it light. We recommend blankets by Hand & Cloth. (see page 46)
Beware that lens flare.
Coke There’s two things you can always find anywhere in the world…Coca-Cola and McDonalds.
Tribal Necklace It cost 2 goats, but it’s worth it.
Lungi It’s not a man skirt, it’s traditional.
Gourd Canteen Oh my gourd!
Sandals Or thongs...if you're an Australian.
content by BRITTANY MAHOOD & COOPER BLADE \\ ATOM MAGAZINE
Bug Spray Might also cover up your stench. Might not, too.
Feels like a bear ate your head.
Don't buy one, knit your own.
Wooley lens cover
Donâ€™t forget the marshmallows.
Wool Jacket Itâ€™s like a glove, for your upper half.
Hand warmers Feel the fire. Feel your fingers again. Neon onesie snow suit The 80's knew what they were doing. HOT.
Useful for tents, sliding down stairs and sleeping in. A dark green one will double as an impromptu Jabba the Hut costume.
Snow boots Boots wit da fur.
If you think your fingers will come in handy postoutreach- buy gloves.
The lip balm that makes your lips feel BOMB.
the God of second chances “He had come to Thailand to die, but not in the way he had planned.” Walking down a side street in the red light district of Pattaya, Thailand,* Chris and I encountered James* for the first time. He was sitting outside a small shop with a flask of whiskey open on the table beside him. Bandages were falling away from his severely deformed leg and his hair hung over his face. He had tattoos on both his hands, his arm and most noticeably his neck, where F.T.W. was roughly outlined in large and careless lettering. I felt compelled to stop and pray for him, a moments decision to step out and do something, not knowing what it would begin. James was taken aback at the offer of prayer, but willing, and so we began to pray that his leg would be healed. We found out that he was 45, from Switzerland* and had been swimming and got an infection that had nearly cost him his life. James was a storyteller and as I came to know him more, he told me about his past. He had been a family man until his wife cheated on him and everything began to fall apart. He has two sons, who he spoke of often and he was overcome with regret about the example he had been for his
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children. His own parents had both remarried over half a dozen times each and he'd started using heroin at 15. He fled to Thailand to escape his life as a dealer, get off drugs and avoid prison. He showed us the tattoos on his arm that told the story of people he had killed, relationships he had lost and hope that was gone. He was in such genuine agony that the emotion turned to tears several times and he spoke of wanting to die in between punching himself in the face. This was not a guy who had lost his mind, but who was in such pain it was amazing he was still able to breathe. As we spoke with him about Jesus, he told us about his close relationship to his grandfather, who went to church where he would come out with his face glowing, but who would later commit suicide in his truck. James also talked about an encounter with a policeman who had let him off drug possession with the stipulation that he hear about Jesus. He said that really stood out to him, and things began to change in his life after that. Soon after meeting James, we had to leave Pattaya with our team. It was while I was further north that James sent me a message saying that Chris and I had given him back hope. I was so excited to hear this and astounded at how God had used us in such a simple way to effect change in someone's life. I knew God had unfinished business with James and so I continued to pray for him with the hope of seeing him again on my return to Pattaya.
Once back, a Dutch volunteer named Mieke and I began two weeks of intensive time with James. We heard many details from his past, were heartbroken on his behalf and grew to appreciate our time with him increasingly as he became our friend. The love of God for him was at times overwhelming. Our experience for me was further confirmation that the Holy Spirit is the only councillor we need and it was a privilege to listen, pray and receive words for him.
The most important part of the story, which could go on for many pages, is the day that James prayed the prayer. The night before I felt an increase in the tangible presence of God and therefore an inkling that something was coming. The following morning I woke up with a lot of pain but a further increase in the presence of the Holy Spirit. I turned right to the following scriptures: “In the day of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you. I tell you, now is the time of God's favor, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:1-2) and “Therefore since we have such a hope, we are very bold. We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face... while the radiance was fading away” (2 Corinthians 3:12-13). I knew in my spirit that something big was going to happen when I saw James, and that I wanted to share my testimony with him.
Mieke and I met with him and I shared with James about some of my past and how I had experienced God in my life. He shared how he'd tried to kill himself by overdosing on heroin because he was racked with guilt after the heroin he had been selling had killed people. Nothing happened. He didn't even get high and he was furious with God. He knew he needed to write down everything he had been through in his life. He planned to leave it on a computer, dig a hole and kill himself. He said that if just one person read it, that would be ok. I shared what I felt like God had said to me, that he had come to Thailand to die, but not in the way he had planned. That he was to die to his old life and receive a new one through Jesus. Though he had been going to church and it was evident that God had been in his life for a long time, constantly seeking him through everything, he seemed to know that this was the point of difference. None of us knew how to pray but we worked it out together and the love and presence of the Holy Spirit was very present and tangible. During the time we spent with James, we witnessed as his plans changed and he regained hope and direction. He decided to go to rehab for his alcohol problem and return to Switzerland to face sentencing and stop running from his past. He told us many times that us stopping to pray for him was something different. It was evident that he had an incredible respect for us and really appreciated our friendship. I could have never imagined something like this from just being obedient to a passing thought of prayer. It was such an incredible experience to be used by God, to gain a brother and to learn so much about myself all at the same time. story by WHITNEY REID illustration by ZOEY BRYANT *Details changed.
photos & story by BRITTANY MAHOOD
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She looked me in the
eyes and I could tell she’d never had it easy Nothing was ever handed to her and the streets had taken their toll. That first day in Dhaka, Bangladesh, my small team and I asked the woman if they had any prayer requests, hoping that small parts of their testimonies would follow. This woman came forward; her eyes met mine and then met the floor. I held my breath as she began. She started speaking in Bangla, and I found myself still holding my breath in anticipation while I waited for translation. She spoke of a time on the streets when she had no one but her children. As her children screamed from hunger, she tried to remain awake because of the fear that someone would kidnap them to try and sell them because of their
lighter skin. She had been sexually exploited, sold for less than the price of a cup of coffee. She was beaten, the evidence apparent on her scarred skin and the dark look in her eyes. She was starving and helpless; alone and in danger. Tears pierced my eyes as she continued. I came to find out that the only redemptive initiative in her life, has been God working through a ministry called CUP and a nonprofit business, Hand & Cloth. She stated it so matter-of-factly. After a life of living on the streets and abuse that never seemed to end, these ministries were the answer to a prayer she mumbled under her breath to a God she didn’t know she believed in.
intervened, where God has had only her best intentions in mind. As I prayed for her, her hands began to quiver as tears flowed down her beautiful tanned skin. I told her that God uniquely and wonderfully created her for a purpose. I told her that there is no such thing as a testimony without a test. The power of prayer saw no limitations that day; I saw the heavens open up over her life and her future. I thank God for the privilege of speaking life over her that day. I shared Psalm 23 with them the last day of teaching. “He restores my soul” was the main message I wanted them to hear, because there is no greater truth that I know.
That was then and this is now. Now she can see where God has
THE LEPROSY VILLAGES The ride through the mountains was not a smooth one. I could feel every pot hole in the road, every chunk of gravel, every curve of the highway. But China is a beautiful country and I was in awe of the scenery around me. We finally drove off onto a dirt path, and parked near an aged cement building. The van stopped, and the ten of us slid out into the warm sunshine and gentle breeze. We met the three people sitting on the cracking steps just outside the building. They were beautiful, absolutely beautiful. These people were of old age and had deformed hands and feet. One man walked with a crutch as his feet no longer functioned as they should. Each person had been plagued with leprosy at a young age. Leprosy, or Hansonâ€™s disease, affects the nerves, and often permanently damages skin, limbs, and eyesight. Leper colonies are common in China. These colonies exist in the mountains, far away from cities and large villages. It is almost as if the lepers are forgotten. Although most are cured, their bodies still suffer the consequences of the disease. Many are severely handicapped and isolated in communities far from their homes. One man we met had lived alone for twenty years of his life. From age 10 to 30, he spent all of his time alone in a cave, an outcast from his village and from society. It broke my heart to think of the past struggles and trials of these people. That day we were able to spend time with the community in the mountains. I was overwhelmed with the joy and hope in the eyes of the people we met in the two colonies we visited. We thought we could spread the love of Jesus to them, but it turns out that Jesus was already so present there. It was so obvious to us through every interaction. We played music with them, drew pictures for them, hugged them and prayed for them. I was reminded of how Jesus cared for the lepers; how these people were the ones He cherished, healed and cleansed. I was overcome with the fact that we were given the remarkable opportunity to bless them, not only with medicine, but with our time and prayers. It was so hard to leave them, to know that every day there is the same. That every day they wake up in the same building and go outside to the same courtyard. Change is an unknown concept to them. If only more people would see their needs and be willing to love them. They are the orphans of China. Before we left to visit another colony, the woman touched my face with her hands; every finger worn down to a small nub. Although there was so much pain in that place, there was more triumph than I can ever understand. story by COURTNEY Beiler photos by LAURIN HOLZ & JULIE BROWN
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europe YOU KNOW IT'S OUTREACH
photo by WHITNEY REID
When you come to a crawl on the highway to pass a horse and buggy / When you come back to your hut & two women are slathering a fresh coat of poo on the floor to keep out the ants / When you realize the 15 Euro night bus is better than a 1st class flight / When you complain that 2 euros is too much for a meal / When you realize Pizza Hut is “fine dining" / When the sound of hocking luggies becomes acceptable & somewhat comforting / When you are hit on by a local with the line, “I have a monkey, want to see it?” / When you have issues using a western toilet again, after using only a squatty / When you stop asking what it is you are eating. It’s food, just eat / When NGO hitchhiking becomes your best mode of transportation / When you wake up with a snake crawling by your face / When your neighbors name their new born twins after your team leader / When you worship God like he is in the room / When you realize how addicted to Nutella you are because you can’t find any in 100 mile radius. We looked / When a team member tries to vomit out of the bus but misses the window…and no one flinches / When the man across the restaurant is eating dinner with his goat / When half a shower is worse than no shower / When wearing the same clothes for five weeks becomes acceptable / When the restaurant's mission is to "serve safe and healthy food” and you find a roach cooked with your food / When you go purposefully to the parts of town most try and stay away from / When you realize you are closer to the car next to you then you are to the driver of your own car / When you pray in the New Year with Nigerians in Greece / When you talk as much with your hands as your voice / When you have a headache and your host offers you acupuncture not PAIN KILLERS / When you eat rice for breakfast, lunch and dinner / When you go to some of the remotest places on earth. With a guitar.
After spending the last couple of months doing ministry in Germany how has your view of the country changed? After learning more about Germany’s history, I feel this country is trying to become something again. I was shocked when I found out how Germans view themselves. They are taught not to be proud as Germans, because they link pride to how Germany was during WWII. This spirit is the opposite of how I was brought up, being told I should be proud to be American. I found that many things about the German culture, such as the media, come from America. This made me think, “What have we (the USA) done to this world?” I also noticed that there is an ongoing divide in Germany between east and west, but the people are really trying to overcome this.
It is unusual for this base to have students doing lecture phase and outreach in the same country. This year however, a team felt like they were meant to stay and take on the challenge. Eunjin Lee sat down with Bethany Graybill
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What were they searching for? For some, especially the youth, it was an outlet to express their emotions and energy. For the majority, it was love. How did you reach out to these people? By being open and talking to them. I listened to their stories and hung out with them. After trust was established in the relationship, I shared about God. Of the people we met, two teenagers we got to know in Magdeburg stand out in my mind. They were kids who hung around in the neighborhood, we first connected with them through music – one of them liked to sing and rap, while the other liked to dance. They came to the church where we were staying, and after making music, we had dinner and talked. They really enjoyed the time with us, even hearing about Jesus. I saw so much hope for them. In general, did you find the people were receptive to you? Yes, I think so. Our team didn’t necessarily see hundreds of people coming to Christ. But we answered many questions and also raised new ones. I thought people in Germany weren’t interested in God. This was based on the notion I had of a developed country, where everyone does his own thing and doesn’t care about others. But when I shared about God, people reacted by saying, “I didn’t know God was an option.” They were open to Him. I believe our team sewed a lot of seeds by our words and actions throughout the outreach. How were the churches in Germany? I saw two types of churches. There were the old churches and then there were those on fire for God. The latter churches’ reaction to our team and what we were doing was, “Tell us more, we want more,” and “Pray for us.” But for both churches, the moment I entered them, I wanted to jump and scream, “Wake up! Get up and move!” Church congregations are sincere in their beliefs, but most of them are passive in their expression. I wished people would see just how big our God is and be stirred to stand up and worship or cry out to Him. How have you changed? Towards the end of the outreach, one of my teammates, Jimmy, described me as someone who is patient, has a heart for kids, and finishes what I have started. When I told this to my sister back home, she laughed at me. I laughed along with her because that’s not how I was. Hearing Jimmy’s comment, I really felt that I must have changed. If I have, it was totally by God's grace.
photo by MICHAEL MCMASTER
As Germany is a developed country, it’s easy to miss the aspects that make it a mission field. The people appear to be busy with somewhere to go or something to do. It also seems like they don’t need anything because they have money. But if you look at the country as a mission field, you can see it as one. While doing street ministry, we met a lot of homeless people, as well as punks and social outcasts. When we talked to them, we found that most of them were searching for something else.
JOY IN NOVI SAD story by JENNIFER BROCK
Outreach in South East Europe was a life changing event for me. A time where I saw God move in countless unexpected ways. Perhaps the most memorable example of this for me was in Serbia. We left Germany knowing that God had told us 'Serbia,' but we had no idea of what city He wanted us in. Half-way there we piled out of the vans and sought God desperately. He spoke in that semi-ambiguous still small voice we hear a lot about and said 'Novi Sad'. When we got to Novi Sad it was late at night and we didn’t know where we’d stay but I was excited to embrace the challenge. From 'Faith Walk' earlier in the lecture phase, I had learned to
No fear, that is, until we got into the centre of the city. Nighttime had set in. It was extremely cold and there were drunk people on every street. As we walked around, seeking a lead from God, an unexpected feeling sunk in. I was uncomfortable and I felt like there was danger around every corner. I hated this place and I didn't know why God had called us here. I just wanted to get this night over with so we could leave early in the morning. As the cold settled into our bones and frustration fueled by exhaustion took over, our leaders felt led to go into a bar to ask for help. The waitress spoke English, but she wasn't from the area and so she offered to ask the other people around. Two, large intimidating men, sat shrouded in smoke in the corner of the bar. In what can only be described as a miracle, one of them owned a hostel and the waitress was able to negotiate a price for us.
photo by CHARLENE SNADER illustration by ZOEY BRYANT
trust God in situations like this and I had no fear at all.
In the morning I was still hoping we would pack up and go home. Instead we were sent out on prayer walks to see who we could meet and what conversations we could start. That morning I fell in love with Novi Sad. The next three days spent in Serbia, were possibly my favorite of outreach. The more I talked to people the more I discovered their hearts. Many people seem to be confused. Perhaps they don’t know why they were born in their country, why they have dreams that can’t ever be reached and why they live only to fight to survive. We met so many artists and they were so receptive to us- our creativity connected us. I look back on that first night and realize it must have been the enemy trying to scare me off from something great. I feel a harvest coming for the city of Novi Sad. And it’s a harvest that I believe I just may see. A piece of my heart has been rooted in Serbia. Now that outreach has ended, God has been opening up new ministry plans for me, and I know that part of those plans include the little city of Novi Sad.
8000 km, 2.5 months, 25 people, 14 countries,
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3 vans, 1 seriously big God
... this is outreach
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by JENNIFER BROCK
by JULIA HERTER
by JENNIFER BROCK
Let your Art be your Voice. by CAITLIN BURKE
by CAITLIN BURKE //
Marriage of the Arts DTS Mobile DTS YWAM Herrnhut Staff photo by CHAD STROEACH
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photos by BRITTANY MAHOOD \\ ATOM MAGAZINE
SCHOOL OF THE KINGDOM A school for those who desire to carry the heart that Jesus has, preaching and demonstrating the Gospel of the Kingdom, in power and truth. Teaching on our identity in the Kingdom, evangelism through the power of the Holy Spirit, and cultivating a life of encounter with the power and presence of God
Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven. Matt 6:10 Dates: April 14th - August 23rd Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Published on Mar 20, 2012