Monday, January 18, 2010

Dinner and the CIA

Did that title pique your curiosity?  We arrived at a city in East T two days ago.  The first thing that occurred was funny in hindsight but not at the time that it happened.  We met two people who spoke English on the bus and when we arrived at the oto park (bus terminal) we asked them to help us get a ride to the hotel.  One woman - a travel agent - disappeared, so David went with the gentleman to attempt to find a cab.  The woman found us a bus for 30 lire, and the gentleman 3 cabs for 20 lire each.  We opted for the bus - duh - but were confronted by angry cab drivers!  A shouting match ensued, but no blows were exchanged.  However, we found out once we were on the bus that the woman was having us delivered to the hotel where she worked - - a 4 star, and out of our price range :)  After much discussion, us in English and the driver in Turkish, David called one of our friends and he explained in Turkish that we were to be taken to OUR hotel.  Then, the price of the bus went up to 50 lire.  Seems the woman had slipped them some money to take us to her hotel.  We arrived safely, but tired and a little frayed!

Yesterday,  we attended a church service.  We met a young woman who speaks excellent English, and as a matter of fact had lived in Aspen for 5 months.  We went to lunch with her and 3 companions, but her friends weren't Christian.  We had a chance to share faith with them, as well as an incredible meal.  Three of our students went to play backgammon with them last evening.  One of the girls had an ex-boyfriend show up, and yes, he is Turkish CIA.  So, she told him where we were staying, how long we were staying, etc.
Please pray for protection for us, as well as wisdom.  We feel safe, but I would hate for us to be ejected from the country.  All that said, we are having such an incredible time.  We are blessed, and the Lord is with us.  Thank you for your prayers - - we feel them.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Leaving Rivendell

We have been in Rivendell for two weeks.  It is a retreat house, located in the woods outside of the city of Antalya.  We have had amazing times of praise and worship, intercession and fellowship here.  We have sent the students out to two local villages that haven't had prayer teams walking the streets yet, and they were able not only to pray and do some spiritual mapping, but also encountered and befriended some of the local people.  People in this country are naturally suspicious, so it's not an easy thing to make friends with the villagers.  Also, not a lot of people speak English, which also hampers friendships.  However, that said, everyone thoroughly enjoyed their time here.  Our Christmas was quiet, but we did exchange secret santa gifts and we had stockings full of candy for everyone here.  Our hosts have been amazing, and we hope to stay in touch with them for many years to come.  We had an extended prayer and worship time on Christmas Day that was really fabulous!  We are excited about our next stop.  I will tell you where we've been after we leave our next city.  Turkey has been a dream come true and we have been so incredibly blessed here.  Please continue to stand with us in prayer, because team unity is a difficult thing with 19 people... we could use your intercession.  Thank you for all you are doing for us and standing in the gap.  More next time!