Mission to North Siberia – the “Road”

This post is part 1 of a short series on a 10-day trip I took with my older son Kerith this summer to a remote land and ethnic groups of northern Siberia. As will come as no surprise, it was an unforgettable experience that will inform my thoughts and feelings on ministry for years to…

The Gift of Team

If I had a battle cry, it would probably be, “Give me a team, or give me death!” Ever since learning the value of teamwork and the essential value of the Body of Christ as a real functioning organism while a camp counselor in 1988, I have been on a quest. It reached its peak,…

I’m a Native!

Want proof? Here is the official statement I got today (translated by yours truly for your convenience): The Commission of the Headquarters of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation for St. Petersburg and the Leningrad region for the recognition of foreign citizens or those without citizenship as native Russian speakers. DECISION April…

Is this all just talk?

Over the years since first going into ministry in 1997 I have been involved in lots of kinds of ministry – counseling, coaching, spiritual formation at one end, and citywide coalition building, racial reconciliation, grant writing for ministry projects, prayer initiatives, pastor summits, training churches, with occasional preaching on the other. With age and experience,…

2020 Ministry Report

Each year we must give a report of our accomplishments to our sending agency, Novo, who then compiles them into a general report to give donors an idea of what God has been doing around the world through our nearly 600 staff who serve in 163 different countries. That report is available here. It’s always…

Galina’s Testimony

I have known Galina (Galya) and her husband Mikhail (Misha) for several years. They are some of my favorite people. He is a pastor, and they have adopted several orphans and are leaders in the national coalition “Russia without Orphans.” I thought her recent testimony about her experience in our seminar and mini course Real…

Course Testimonies

No crisis will slow down our work! Summer is normally a slow time anyway in Russia, but with Zoom, training has been growing, and most encouragingly among ministry leaders and pastors from a wide swath of Russia. Here are some of the testimonies we have gotten: Thanks to the tools and skills we got in…

Jake’s Big Burden

Following is another in my series of posts from my course material, tentatively named, “The King’s Table” about how to build a true community that moves from learning how to love one another to loving those far from God. This excerpt is from a lesson on how to biblically bear one another’s burdens. Pretend that…

The kids’ summer plans

Lydia is finishing up studies at Wheaton College this term after three years there. She’s in a pre-nursing program that has her do the bulk of the nursing studies elsewhere. Her sense of call to serve in the area of human trafficking has not abated, but she wants to re-group this summer before committing to…

The Christian marriage crisis in Russia

Although marriage counseling is not the center of my work here in Russia, it has always been close to my heart. It was the most rewarding part of my counseling practice in Richmond before moving here, and the way God has helped me grow as a husband is not a small part of my own…