Wow, what a joy it was to be able to serve over 130 Pastors and wives on Saturday! The day was filled with collective worship of our God and fellowship around His Word. It is always a thrill to join the rich Romanian voices in songs of praise to our God. It never fails to cause me to reflect upon what it will be like to gather around the throne of God someday as One people from every tribe, tongue, and nation to heap songs of praise and worship to our great God and Redeemer! Moments like the ones we experienced again on Saturday are but a foretaste of that glorious day that is to come.
Brother Lewis also filled the air with a beautiful song as he sang about our glorious redemption through Christ and of the ever-pressing reality that “People Need the Lord”. He also challenged the men from Ezekiel 33 to take their role as “watchmen” seriously. Darlene Lott and Debbie Goldsmith were able to minister the Word to the Wives in a split session. Pastor Bruce and I had the privilege of proclaiming God’s word to these Pastors and Wives – God’s Word that is always a salve to the wounded soul, a shot of encouragement to the discouraged, and an arrow of conviction to the lumps of remaining sin. It’s humbling and a true honor to stand and deliver the Word to these faithful men and women.
It was so encouraging to sit with these men and fellowship over lunch. I sat with several men who could speak a bit of broken English. It was such a joy to talk about the glory of Christ and His ministry through them. Their humility and sincerity touched my heart. A few of the men I spoke with pastor multiple churches. No…not satellite campuses to increase their influence. They simply try their best to pastor local churches in villages where there is no pastor. So they travel almost constantly between villages in order to shepherd the sheep and preach each week. Each of them seeks to find a “Timothy” that they can disciple, train, send away for education, and install as the pastor in the local church. One man explained that he was working with 7 churches at one point and that he has worked it down to 3. What a joy it was to listen to them, learn from them, and fellowship around the importance of planting and establishing local churches in every town!
Over the last two years, God has used this simple conference to break some previously untilled ground. We have talked with numerous pastors who thanked us for organizing this because so many of the pastors did not know each other and were not engaging in fellowship or partnership. It seems that God has providentially used FFH and this conference to bring gospel-loving men together for greater progress! Again, what a joy it is for us to be a part of what God is doing here!
Ultimately, the conference was a wonderful success because Christ was highly exalted and because it seemed clear that many pastors were encouraged. Let’s continue to pray for these faithful men. “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news.”