Editor’s Note: The report below was provided by an SGA-supported pastor in Russia.
There is a great sweetness when men and women gather around a table for food and fellowship. The conversations are different than when the men and women gather separately. Topics go deeper and sometimes even more personal when a husband and wife sit side by side. We are thankful for SGA-supported Pastor Andrei and his faithfulness to unashamedly share the Good News at a recent gathering with a husband and wife . . . and build relationships with those holding culturally to a Muslim faith.
Read more as Andrei shares about his conversation . . .
“We visited our friends [in a Russian region] before the Kurban-Bayram festivities. We had a good time of fellowship and meals. I noticed an interesting detail, that men have meetings only for men, and women meet with women [in this region].
“But when we come, we fellowship all together, and sit at one table. We spoke about religion, of course. This friend of mine told us about the festivity and its procedures. This holiday is linked with the sacrifice of Abraham. Their story about Abraham is similar to the Bible story. His words gave me an opportunity to preach about a great sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross. Each person is in debt before God and is unable to pay it off. But God solves this problem Himself, sending Jesus to this world. He was condemned and punished for our sins.
“After my story, my friend began to ask me many questions. They wanted to contradict me and my words. Then he said that he did not understand the notion of the Trinity, sacrifice on the Cross, forgiveness of sins, and that we are justified by Christ. I said that he would understand it one day, but he has to be born again. It confused my friend even more. He joked that he hoped I would kill him so that he could be born anew. I noticed that his wife was listening to my words very attentively but said nothing. I told my friends about it many times, and I hope that each time they can better understand my words.
“I believe that the Gospel of Christ is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth. I hope that God will give faith to my friends. I can only love them, serve them, and each time to proclaim the Gospel, and not be ashamed of it.”
- Pastor Andrei