During our trip to the U.S. last month, we talked with several of you about our vision of opening a prayer retreat center here in Estonia, with the hopes of providing a place for christian workers in Eastern Europe to come for restoration and healing by spending time in intensive healing prayer and resting in the Lord.
Towards that effort, we have found God leading us so wonderfully into relationships with other believers here in Estonia and Russia who also have been given a passion for a ministry like what we have envisioned. I have begun meeting regularly for prayer with individuals who also are seeking healing ministry in their own lives and families. I have invitations, and hope to begin traveling again this fall, to lead prayer conferences in Russia and Estonia. The ministry of healing prayer to which we feel called is already happening.
But we want to be careful not to become settled into what it is now, but to continue to take steps forward toward building a prayer retreat center as the Lord leads. This summer we will begin visiting different properties around Tallinn that are available for sale. We hope to take some of you who will be visiting us this summer around to see some of these properties with us!
The specific prayer request we have at this time, however, is related more to the spiritual environment that is revealing itself around the building of this facility – a glimpse of which we are only beginning to see. Particularly in the weeks since returning to Estonia, we have been almost shocked – even heart-broken – to begin to learn just a bit about the spiritual atmosphere that exists here, and to begin to feel some of the darkness and heaviness of the spiritual battles that are taking place.
One of the things God has shown Charlie and I clearly since our moving to Russia a few years ago has been the power that comes through suffering for the Lord. We have come to know places in Russia and elsewhere that were built by people who fought battles and experienced persecution through and due to their efforts to obey Jesus Christ. These places now just seem to drip with residue of the Holy Spirit. His healing power and mercy feels palpable as you walk onto these grounds today.
As we begin this journey to build a prayer retreat center here in Estonia, Charlie and I have become aware that the enemy is not pleased, and that battles very likely will be coming. But we know that as the Lord reveals the location and the plans to us for this center, we must step forward in obedience. As an Estonian sister of mine said earlier this week, there is no alternative to Him. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. We know we are broken, sinful creatures, and that we will often get it wrong. But, as faithfully as possible, and entirely through His perfect grace, we must walk in obedience to Him.
So, we’re asking for serious commitments from individuals who are willing to pray fervently and without ceasing for this center, as we’re called to do in 1 Thessalonians 5:17. I will admit that I am scared at what I can’t see before me. John 20 tells us that Mary went to the tomb on Easter morning while it was still dark, and I pray that we also will step forward as He leads, even in the darkness. I pray that His hand will be always upon us and all of those who are called into this ministry, along with our children, families, and all of our loved ones. I pray that we will walk protected by Him and covered in that which remains – faith, hope, and the greatest of all, love.
Let us know if you feel led to partner with us as a warrior of prayer for this center. And thank you very much for the love and support you’re already giving! We know that the value of the care and accountability you all provide us cannot be measured, and we thank God for you in Christ Jesus.
Love and peace in Christ Jesus,