I’m looking at a 16th century large stone carving that was used to speak to people’s hearts and reveal God’s plan for their lives. And it still speaks to people today! The carvings have intricate details that tell God’s story, from creation… to the fall of man… to Christ’s sacrifice, and finally to a great and wonderful wedding feast that we are all invited to!
It’s Monday after Easter and we have had another full day here in Armenia. Our day started with a Bible Study on Holy Sweat/Wholly Surrender. This title comes from the AIA Principles…Bible Studies that express the Gospel applied to sport, experienced through sport, in the language of sport. This Priciple asks the question, “How will I grow?”
Soon after our breakfast Bible study we left for a tour of the Armenian Olympic Training Center. John was able to fulfill one of our team goals by making some good connections for Tigran with the wrestling coaches. One wrestler remembered John from our AIA team last year that trained here with them for a week. Our prayer is that this opens doors for Tigran to minister to the athletes training at this complex!
We spent our afternoon touring the oldest cathedral in the world… Etchmiadzin! Built in the fourth century, it has survived wars and earthquakes and more. Our guide, Vardan who is the President of New Life Armenia (Campus Crusade for Christ) taught us how the Gospel can be told through the carvings on the ancient cross stones that can be found all over this country.
Our day was finished with a celebration of Easter with the New Life Armenia staff. There was more traditional Armenian Easter food, music and comedy. Our hosts were very gracious. They even celebrated my birthday and the birthday of a German missionary who is here since we both had March birthdays.
It’s exciting to hear how Vardan uses the Cross Stones to share the Gospel. We look forward to hearing how the people we are building relationships with receive this message. Perhaps, they will hear while we are in Armenia, but certainly after we leave for even the stones cry out in this land.
• Paul for the team