As I prepared to move to Kazakhstan last month I had an interesting conversation with one of my neighbors. When she heard that I was moving to Kstan, she remarked about how hard live would be here. She thought that the food might be scarce and that the standard of living would be lower.
I also remember a conversation I had with a friend in Lugansk, Ukraine in 1994. He was a college student. I must admit that live was more difficult back then, but not to the extreme. Dima remarked that he couldn’t wait to finish college so that he could move to another country where life was easier since things were so difficult then in Ukraine.
I remember telling Dima that there were places in the world where the situation was much worse. I had made several trips to Mexican border cities and had seen the poverty there. I remember visiting a house in Monte Alto, TEXAS that only had a dirt floor. I shared with him some of what I had heard about Africa and its own problems.
Over the last few days I have heard first hand accounts of how difficult it is to be a believer in other Central Asian countries. I won’t mention the countries or the people by name since I don’t want to bring any harm to them. However, I am sharing their story with you so that you will pray for them.
While some people may have the impression it is difficult in Kstan, after hearing their stories, I am blessed to be where I am. Life in other CA countries are just the opposite. One country has less than 10 Baptist churches. Another brother shared of how difficult it is to evangelize in his city for fear of imprisonment.
One Russian brother shared how all the Russians are emigrating back to Russia thus leaving a void of any Christian influence in the country.
While I know we have a big problem with not enough men to lead the church in Kstan, that problem is magnified in some of the surrounding countries. However, with the picture painted so dreary, I heard their hearts praising the Lord for the work that IS going on, for the people repenting and turning to Jesus!
My heart is now weaved with theirs. It has brought an increased awareness to me that I need to be more diligent in praying for them and their work. As you are reading this, would you please pray for all the countries that end with STAN? From Kazakhstan down to Pakistan and all the countries in between, pray for God to reveal Himself to the people of CA.