Good morning to most of you (most of you are sleeping right now.) But in this side of the earth it is a beautiful, clear warm day in Ulaanbaatar. This week has had a lot of ups & downs, but the end God is faithful & we all are smiling.
Last Sunday morning I went to my Mongolian house church service. It was in a basement apartment close to us which was nice because it was only a 2 minute walk. The apartment was almost in what we would call a crawl space in Canada. It was nice because the Mongolian family of 5 had done the best they could to make the 1 bedroom apartment look like home. There was only one 8"x14" window in the kitchen area, where there was only a free standing sink & a counter 14" off the floor. They did not have a fridge or a stove just a kettle, single hot plate & a Бууз (meat dumpling) steamer. I know that many of you would feel differently about homes here, but when you know how little people have & how they take that to make their house a home you feel so much more comfortable when you visit.
Mongol's are so generous. They have so little, but freely offer most/all of what they have as a gift. After the 3 hour service the host family made a huge meal for everyone to share. It was almost overwhelming. I really struggled with eating the food (I really enjoy Mongolian food) because I didn't want to take any food from them knowing for most this was going to be their only meal of the day. I was also struggling inside with what someone said. But after the service only having comprehended 2% of what was said knew that our Mongolian language training is missions to these people. It shows these people that we value them & their culture enough to struggle day after day trying to learn their language for the next 2 years. Based on my own ministry experience & talking to missionaries all over the world I have been reaffirmed that 95% of Christian ministry is based on the relationships you have with people around you.
While I continue with Mongolian language training I would ask that you all pray for me (Matt) especially next week. I have my 1st Mongolian language exam on Thursday morning (Wednesday night starting at 10pm AST.) The pass mark is 80% & the exam will include listening, writing, & reading Mongolian. In total it will be 90 minutes long. Our home group bible study has already started praying for my exam.
Please continue to pray for the cost of our Mongolian language costs. My (JCS) director will be going into the school to talk about the cost to see if we can pay monthly & if there is any leeway in the cost. Could you also pray for Teresa's birth mother's mother (Marg?) She was in a very serious car accident earlier in the week. She doesn't believe Jesus is her Savour & in surgery her heart stopped twice. She is now in stable condition at the QEII in Halifax.
Teresa, lead our home group Bible study last night focusing in on 2 Corinthians 12:9-10. She shared with us about how God wants us to praise out weaknesses because in our weakness we cannot be prideful of what we did, but only what God did for us. The discussion that followed was excellent & we all were reminded that many times we feel inadequate to do what God asks of us, but He equips us & we can only praise him.