If you have been thinking that all of our ministry is in Russia, then you may be surprised today. This summer Diana and I had a wonderful diversion from our normal work in Russia to serve a school in Indonesia. Let me tell you how God pulled that off for us to do something so out of the ordinary.
Through the school Diana teaches through online, Diana got to know one of the leaders of a classical Christian school in Bandung, who invited her last year to do some teacher training for most of the staff. The school is a very successful one, with (now) about 500 students, and all of the teachers and students have to speak in English, which is a second language in Indonesia.
So Diana spent about 10 days there last fall working (quite intensely) with them in her area of specialty – writing. They were so impressed that they asked her to come back. It so happened that she was already planning to come back, as our family had to travel to Malaysia this summer for our mission’s once-every-four-year worldwide conference. Diana talked them into speaking with me too to see if there was anything I could offer of value. Turns out I could.
So we spent two weeks there as a family this summer – Diana doing more and deeper training with the teachers, and I leading some of the principals, teachers, and board members in Christian coaching training. The kids meanwhile did everything from play with the P.E. staff to helping out with the Kindergarten classes when their school year started.
To be honest, we all had a wonderful time (especially after these travel woes), loved the people we worked with, felt like we were able to be used in a way that had a real impact, and it was a great change of pace from the normal life we know in Russia. And yes, we got in some fun time too. And no, we aren’t tempted to leave Russia.
Diana was excited to see how eager and teachable all the teachers were, how much they had implemented from the year before, and the varieties of applications they were making to the material. I was excited to see how quickly my students picked up on the values of coaching, how powerfully their lives were being impacted, and how they were able to pass these values on and impact others around them in school and at church through their small groups.
A few comments I got:
“It really encourages my spirit especially on leadership things!”
“Through this Coaching Training I have had the most significant learning experience i.e.: learning to hold my tongue and really listen what my peer said.”
“I LEARN MUCH ABOUT BEING AUTHENTIC & BE ACCOUNTABLE TO SOMEBODY. I REALIZED THAT MY PERSONALITY IS TEND TO BE INTROVERT, AND IT CHALLENGES ME TO BE TRANSFORMED AND OPEN MY LIFE MORE TO OTHERS, SO THAT ALL OF GOD’S WORKS IN MY LIFE SHOULD BECOME A BLESSING FOR OTHERS.”
“I believe this is the right way to built people and help other to grow.”
So, I guess you never know how and where God will use you. Thanks for being behind us to make these extra blessings possible.