Friday, January 14, 2011

A Tour of the former Opera Square in Timisoara, Romania

Here Tom is with Dan, the Romanian man who lost his leg in the Romanian revolution as he was protesting the communist regime of Nicolae Ceau┼čescu in December of 1989. Dan gave us a very interesting tour of the area where the revolution took place.

Debbie Tyler, the missionary wife at Timisoari, who did so much to make the church planting conference a blessing to everyone. We are standing in the former Opera Square
where thousands were fired on from the opera house in the background. You can see the balcony where many communist speeches were made.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A Wife's First Priority ~

(This is part of the lesson that I shared with the missionary wives and other Romanian ladies who attended the church planting conference in Romania.)

I recently read of a woman who asks her husband every morning, "What can I do to be a help to you today?" She is a very brave woman! I feel like most things I have on my daily 'to do' list ultimately help my husband, but it is often MY 'to do' list. Sometimes he doesn't need me to plan or prepare for a program or clean out a closet or vacuum a floor, or a dozen other things. Sometimes he may just need me to sew a button on a shirt or make his favorite meal. I have asked the Lord to make me sensitive to my husband's specific needs and to help me to make HIS needs my number one daily priority . Of course it goes without saying that our first priority is our relationship with the Lord. If our relationship with God is not right then we will not have the right relationship with our husband. But humanly speaking our husband should be our first priority - not our children, not our church, not our job, not our ministry...not ourselves. Children have needs that we must meet. Jobs carry responsibilities. Ministries need planning and preparation and hard work, but in it all our goal should be to put our husbands first and to let him know through our words and deeds that he is our first priority. This is God's plan for a happy home. We get so many of God's plans out of order and then wonder why we are not happy.

Genesis 2:18 says, "And the Lord God said, It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him." The word 'help' in 'help meet' comes from the same word 'help' in Psalm 121:1 - "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help." Psalm 121:1 speaks of help that can only come from God. The word 'help meet' would indicate that a wife provides a help to her husband that no one else can provide. That is a very serious responsibility that God has placed on us as wives. There is an emotional support that only a wife can provide for her husband. We need to love him and show him love. Many homes are not happy homes because the husband and wife stop showing love. What says "I love you" to your husband? We need to find out what says I love you to our husbands and make that our first priority. Maybe it is cooking his favorite meal (that is a big one with my husband.) Maybe it is getting excited about his favorite sport, or favorite past time. Maybe he enjoys coming home to an orderly home or maybe he would feel loved if you were a warm and responsive lover. Whatever makes your husband feel loved, make that your priority!

Another way we offer emotional support to our husbands is being a good home manager. Titus 2:5 says, "The aged women...teach the younger be...keepers at home." Being a home manager is part of God's curriculum for a wife. Proverbs 31:27 - "She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness." A good wife is organized and industrius. Proverbs 31:11 says, "The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her...." In Proverbs 31 King Lemuel's mother is giving him advise on leadership qualities and the qualities to look for in a good wife. It is obvious that the Proverbs 31 woman is an excellent home manager. Her home is in such order that her husband has complete trust, complete peace, complete rest. She has made her husband's emotional support her first priority. Does our home offer emotional support to our husbands? A place where he can have peace of heart and mind. A place where he can rest from the cares of ministry, or just the cares of life? Not a home where the children cannot play or the husband cannot leave a book on the floor. Someone has said, "A home should be dirty enough to be happy and clean enough to be healthy". I like that! But God is a God of order and our homes should reflect a certain amount of order: meals on schedule, clothes clean and ready when needed, bathrooms clean, etc. etc. Find out what part of your home your husband likes to see in order or what bothers him if it is not in order. If he likes a clean, orderly bathroom - make that your priority. If he doesn't like to see dishes piled high - make that your priority.

One of the most important needs a wife can meet for her husband is his sexual needs. Many men (and men of God) fall and commit adultery because a wife has not met that important need in his life. That is no excuse for sin, but wives should make fulfilling her husband's physical needs a priority.

How important are we to our husbands? They are incomplete without us. We meet needs in his life that no one else can. If we are the right kind of wife the Bible says that our worth is far above rubies. Proverbs 31:10 - "Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies." I understand that the fiery, red ruby is the costliest of all gems...more costly than diamonds. The Proverbs 31 woman would not have lived in a setting of, pearls, rubies. As a matter of fact history, museums and artifacts would indicate that women in that time lived very hard lives. Dishes and cookware made of mud, stone olive presses and millstones for grinding grains. They lived in hard times. There was little beauty, color or evidence of pleasure. But the Proverbs 31 woman was the sparkling jewel in her husband's life. She brought the joy, the love, the color and the life to her husband. That is my prayer, that God will help me to be the sparkling gem in my husband's life. And I know that will only be possible as I make him my first priority.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Our Ministry Trip to Romania ~

It was my and Tom's great honor and privilege to be invited to the annual church planting conference held at Biserica Baptista Independenta, Timisoara, Romania and hosted by Bro. and Mrs. Tim Tyler. We flew into Timisoara on Saturday,January 8 and Tom preached the Sunday services at Biserica Baptista. The conference began on Monday night. Some missionaries traveled as long as 15 hours by train to get to the meeting. Tom preached a total of seven times in the four day meeting. He spoke through 3 different translators during the week. He kidded with them that he wore them out and they had to rest after translating for him. I spoke once to the missionary wives and some women from various Romanian mission works. It was only my second time speaking through a translator but I really enjoyed it.

Our hearts were warmed and we are looking forward to going back again. We thank the Lord for the opportunity to meet these wonderful missionaries and to hear of the great work they are doing in Romania.
Tom preaching on the opening night. He preached seven times in four days.

Missionary Tim Tyler, conference host.

Tom with the missionary men serving in Romania

The missionary men and their wives.

The congregation on the opening night of the conference.

ROMANIA: The Beautiful Music ~

ROMANIA: Some Pictures Taken at Lunch Time One Day ~

Thursday, January 6, 2011

John and Uli ~

One of my goals with this blog is to preserve memories of our family, church and friends. I found this picture of John and Uli who started coming to RRBC as dating singles shortly after we arrived in 1992. John was a soldier and Uli, a German who spoke very good English. Both unsaved. Tom said John was coming to church to 'impress' Uli, who had never been in a Baptist service before. They were so far from God but the glorious gospel opened their eyes. Uli came forward at the end of a service and I took her aside and led her to Christ. John came with Uli for moral support and the Holy Spirit prompted me to ask John if he knew for sure if he died he would go to heaven. "No, Maam", he said and so I was able to lead John to the Lord, too. They immediately began an amazing transformation in their lives. Let me fast foward about 18 years and say that John and Uli were married, went to Bible College and he is now an assistant pastor in Oregon and Uli is a wonderful, supportive wife.