Editor’s Note: The image and story below were provided by an SGA director in Belarus.
Here is a wonderful account from Pastor Piotr who is SGA’s Regional Ministry Center director in Belarus. He was able to minister to a mother and daughter from one of the hardest hit cities in the Ukraine. As Piotr and other Christians provided emergency help for their physical and spiritual needs, Piotr recognized that this small family knew of God — but really did not know God. Through his ministry to them, they turned to Christ in saving faith . . .
There is a difference between knowing of God and knowing God. Just like the difference of knowing of a person and knowing them personally, there are many who claim to “know” God. We look at the perfect laws of physics, the beauty of a child and a single rose and marvel at the works of God.
The Apostle Paul states…-“For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse”- (Romans 1:20). Many religions in this world claim to worship a transcendent god of their formulation. And in the middle of some of the hardest of times people cry out to God for deliverance. But few know God personally. Only through faith in Jesus Christ, a turning from slavery to sin and turning to God by His grace through faith can our exalted God be known personally. And when we know Him, we know a peace and joy that will be eternally ours. It is this personal relationship that the churches we serve are proclaiming, not just to thank God or cry out to Him, but to know Him personally through faith in Jesus Christ.
Some of those suffering in Ukraine have made their way to Belarus. One lady and her daughter arrived in the village where Piotr and his wife live. Piotr writes: “God so arranged that a mother and daughter from Mariupol came to our village. We met and started talking. Although they knew about God, like all people, they did not know that they could have not only temporal life, but eternal life through Christ.” Piotr recognized that this mother recognized God was at work around her, and yet really did not know God. So he pointed her to faith in Jesus, a faith that wells up into eternal life.
Piotr followed up with them and added, “The mother and daughter said yesterday, that every time we talked, that they were always filled with some kind of joy they did not understand. And even when they lost everything and arrived with one bag for two, they rejoice that they know who will never leave — this is the Lord. We helped them, and they responded to the Gospel. They hope to meet again one day. Today with the hope of the Lord they left for [a different country].”
By God’s grace, He turned their hearts to Him as they heard of the joy of knowing God personally in this world and the life to come. May we too listen closely to those who claim to know God, but really do not personally know God and point them to our only hope in Jesus.”
In a time of great uncertainty, God is bringing help, healing, and hope to the people of Ukraine through SGA-supported pastors, churches, a seminary, and SGA-sponsored Compassion Ministry. Be a part of God’s incredible work with your generosity and prayer support.
Your gift of compassion helps struggling people with emergency aid that generally includes Scripture materials, food, medicine, warm clothing, and shoes.
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Your donation will help change lives in former Soviet Union countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia.