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Samantha Burgess – Hands On, IMB – Prague

23 Mar

“The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:5

Recently, the Lord has been teaching me how to naturally put the gospel into words. The gospel impacts everything we do and experience and yet so often we struggle to talk about it. It is so easy to meet people here and have a great conversation for 15 minutes and never once bring up the gospel. And I walk away from that conversation feeling good about myself that I met a new person and maybe even got their contact number to hang out later. But, that person walked away never hearing about the most important thing that ever happened to me, that has the power to change their lives as well. I am not here just to make friends, I am here because I believe that God’s name is worthy of being made known to all nations and because God wants to establish his church in Prague. So he is teaching me how to put into words this grand story that he is weaving and how to share it with those who have never heard.

He is showing me how my story relates to other people and how it fits into His story. The other day one of my friends opened up to me about her struggle with loneliness and a longing for peace that she had. I have struggled with loneliness in the past and I was able to tell my story and share how the Lord taught me through my struggle that I am known by him and that He is always with me. It is amazing to connect with people and see that even though we come from different cultures, we share the most basic human experiences, longings, and pains. And even greater than that, is the God whose peace and redemption has the power to satisfy those longings. I long for my friends here who share the same experiences of loneliness and lostness, to also share the peace of God that surpasses all understanding. Please pray for my friend that she will experience the peace and the presence of the Lord and that her story of pain and loneliness will be woven into God’s story of redemption.

His story is unfolding here. Last week there was a team here from South Carolina. Part of what they did was distribute coffee and tea in different areas of Barrandov (the district I live in). As a result of that, many people were able to hear the gospel, some for the first time. We also had new people come to the English club we do on Wednesdays and five stayed for the Bible Study afterwards. This is a picture of the light of the gospel piercing one of the darkest, most atheistic countries in the world. On Sunday we gathered with Czech believers, and although we sang in different languages, our voices were unified in praise to the One who reconciled us both to himself and to each other. This is another picture of the work that God is doing here. He is weaving a beautiful tapestry, and he is bringing our threads (even the frayed ones) into His own. Now we only see the tangled backside, but one day we will see it as He sees it, with the redeemed from all nations and languages, singing the same song of praise to Him.

Please pray for the work that the Lord is doing in Barrandov and the other districts in Prague where our team works in Řepy and Bohnice. Pray Habakkuk 2:14, that these areas “will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.”

Pray for encouragement for the team here. Several families have been dealing with sickness and issues back home. Pray for Nicole and I that we will be fully present here and that we will find satisfaction in the Lord alone as we struggle with homesickness and the desire to stay in our comfort zones.

Pray for the believers here to be bold in reaching those around us.

Thank you for your prayers and support. Be encouraged that the Lord is working here just as he is working wherever you are.

In Christ,

Samantha Burgess

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