Where Do the Good Samaritans of Our Time Live?
“So he went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; and he set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him” (Luke 10:34, NKJV).
This verse describes the act of a good Samaritan who stepped in and helped someone in need. Our sisters and brothers in the city of Karakol, following this principle, held a charity program called "Good Samaritan", which was attended by 20 and sometimes 30 guests daily. The whole community prayed earnestly for the friends and acquaintances who were invited.
This was a wonderful program, the purpose of which was to fill both physical and spiritual needs. It was a very versatile, relaxed atmosphere, with warm and friendly communication and a delicious lunch, and this prompted the hearts of the people to share their experiences and listen to God.
The sisters and brothers took the opportunity to introduce new friends to our Adventist Christian principles and rich literature. The guests of the program testified about the excellent mood, physical healing, and positive emotions.
Throughout the week the program was running, it was impossible not to notice the influence of the Holy Spirit and God's leading. Let us pray that as many members of the church as possible get involved in such programs so we, without embarrassment or fear, wisely use the time of grace given to us and, with great zeal, perform the ministry to which the Lord calls each of us.
Books Instead of Easter Eggs
All over the world, there is a tradition of giving pastries or eggs at Easter. We are well aware this is not a biblical approach, so what can we, as Christians, give on this bright day? As part of the DIA department, it was decided to once again visit boarding schools in Iskra, Karabalta, Belovodsk, and Tokmok and conduct the “Jesus is Risen” program. The students received books as gifts. It is a really wonderful idea to tell people about the true meaning of this bright holiday, Easter, and give our spiritual literature as a gift. According to the established tradition, together they sang, prayed, read the Holy Scriptures, and talked about Christ. As a result, more than 40 books were donated.
Representatives of the Clergy Played Football with the President of Kyrgyzstan
On May 4–5, a friendly football tournament, "Muras", was held in Bishkek, in which 12 teams took part: the presidential administration, the Jogorku Kenesh, veterans of national football, representatives of the diplomatic corps and clergy, heads of local governments, representatives of healthcare and education, representatives of media and sports federations, the business community, and cultural figures. This tournament was organized on the initiative of the Kyrgyz Football Union and the presidential administration. The representative of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Alekseykin Roman Leonidovich, played on Lyman, the team of the clergy, which confidently beat the teams Onor and Bilim and reached the quarterfinals, where they again defeated the team of journalists. At the end of the tournament, first place was taken by the presidential administration team; second place, by Zhogorku Kenesh; and in the match for third place, the veterans of the Alga club defeated Yiman in a penalty shootout. However, in such a game, not only is the greatest number of goals scored considered a victory, but more so are the friendly relations that have been built during the tournament.
“When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, The moon and the stars, which You have ordained, What is man that You are mindful of him, And the son of man that You visit him? For You have made a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor. You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet” (Psalm 8:3–6).
There are many paths that lead us to the knowledge of the Lord. One of them is unity with nature. Even an unbeliever, being on the top of a mountain under the open, starry sky, is ready to recognize a Creator behind all this greatness. In the psalms of King David, we often meet lines where, by observing the phenomena of nature, he comes closer to the Creator and a deeper understanding of His character. Perhaps that is why Christian youth love to spend their ministry in nature and walk in the mountains. A vivid example of this is the recent hike involving boys and girls from Tokmok and Bishkek. The whole journey took them almost three days and two nights. The route was not easy but very diverse. They had to go through mountain paths and overcome hills and thorny thickets, but they found the strength in themselves and got to the intended place: a birch grove.
Every evening and morning began with prayer and spiritual meditation. It was a special blessing to meet on the Sabbath day in the mountains and plunge into its peace. The whole program was very interesting and intense. Each young person was able to contribute, whether in kindling a fire, cooking, or holding discussions and interactive activities. During the Sabbath service, reflecting on the life of Abraham, the youth were able to take a different look at their relationship with God and draw a lot of new things for themselves. No one was left indifferent to the conversations concerning the formation of a mature personality in oneself and building full-fledged and strong relationships. Controversial and burning topics were raised about headship in the family—respect for the woman and submission to the man.
The rest time flew by. Many sadly packed up their tents and backpacks, without hiding their desire to extend this trip for a few more days. And only the words of the youth leader, Evgeny Yuryevich Devyatkin, that they would definitely go on another trip soon, filled them with joy and hope for new adventures.