Author Archive for Carolyn M.

Some adventures we’d rather forget

I usually avoid talking about health things – they’re always more interesting to the teller than to the hearer.  But this situation has really impacted life and ministry, and it’s not over yet.  For years I (Carolyn) have had knee problems which always resolved with a little care, but while down on the Debrecen main square mingling with folks at the big August 20 holiday celebration my right knee suddenly gave notice that I was DONE.WALKING.  Pain was so intense that I had to call Gary to come to my rescue in the car (he was working at home that day.)  Not an easy task for the poor guy to reach me since the streets were still blocked for the parade. It was one of those days full of adventure and excitement we’d rather forget!

Here are some photos of the more pleasant part of the day:

 August 20, “St. Stephen’s Day,” commemorates the founding of the nation and its first king. The Flower Carnival in Debrecen includes a wonderful parade. Here we see the float with the royal crown, some Hungarian people in their native dress, and a pony cart displaying the sunflowers which are so prevalent in our part of the country. The parade includes groups from all around the world – the 4th photo shows a flag team from Narnia, Italy. Yes, my friends, Narnia does exist!

Sunset by the Adriatic Sea in CroatiaThe pain gradually eased off some but there was obviously a problem, so Sept. 3 on our way to a vacation in Croatia we got it checked by a well-recommended doctor in Zagreb.  He advised meniscus surgery for that same afternoon.  Things got a little complicated and what normally would’ve been an outpatient procedure turned in to several days in the hospital.  Our vacation was a little shortened, but we did still have four lovely days on the coast (Gary bought a nice folding chair so I could sit by the water and prop up my leg.)  The photo shows the beautiful sunset on the Adriatic Sea that we enjoyed our last evening there.

Back home the knee slowly improved, but then I re-injured it at the end of September and had to start all over with the recovery.  Praise God, this last week I’ve been able to tell that it’s getting a lot better!

  • Pray that the knee will continue to heal properly so I can get back into more of my regular work.  Gary has had double-duty over the past months since I’ve not been able to shop, cook very much, etc. I’ve missed being on-site with him for quite a few ministry events, providing what support I could from home.
  • All of this has really messed up my sleep patterns and aggravated some other pain issues.  Pray that God will grant peaceful sleep and pain relief.
  • The doctor recommends an additional surgery for both of my knees to help put off eventual knee replacements. (Yikes! Guess I’m really not a teenager any more!)  Pray for wisdom for us in making decisions about treatments.
  • Thank the Lord for how He brings us through difficult times, showing us that who we are in Him is more important than the things we can do for Him – this can be a real battle for someone like me who loves to feel useful and productive!  These last months have been an opportunity for me to ponder the fact that it’s about Him, NOT about me or what I can accomplish for Him.

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10 (NIV)

Website and blogging changes

As we head into July, we want to let you know about some changes that are taking place this month.  We’re in the process of moving www.heartforhungary.com and www.hope4ehu.com onto a new webhost, which will necessitate a re-design. In addition to that, these blog posts will begin to appear directly onto the blog page of heartforhungary.  (Up until now they have been posted on Blogger at http://debrecenduo.blogspot.com and copied onto heartforhungary.)

Please forgive us if during the coming weeks there are some glitches and possible down-time.  If you see an error message or experience problems, please don’t give up on us…try again later! 

We appreciate your prayers that all of this will go as smoothly as possible so that we can stay in touch.  It’s important to us to stay in contact with you, and we appreciate your prayer support very much.  Thank you!

Hard pressed on every side, but not crushed

How much more can a person handle when it seems no matter how hard they try, they are continually smacked in the face by life?

“J” is a believer and wants to serve God and be on mission to those around him, but he is finding basic survival difficult–he is trying to look to the Lord for his strength and hope but needs your prayers. This friend has been in a very difficult place in life for years now.  Recently he got a new job with much better salary and conditions, and it seemed that finally things could better…then one thing after another have started to hit him from every side.  His young daughter’s medical condition has returned, and doctors say she needs another very expensive treatment that isn’t covered on national insurance; he is working too many jobs and ruining his health; his bicycle, which he counts on for transportation to and from his jobs, was stolen in broad daylight along with things he had in the new “saddlebags” he had invested in; now something has arisen at the new job that doesn’t look good for him.

Pray for wisdom and continued spiritual growth for him, that the truth will come to light at work and that he will not lose that position, that he will be able to moderate his lifestyle to a much healthier balance (including time to sleep!), and that the Lord will provide for his and his family’s needs. Ask that God will provide healing for his daughter, whether through the special medical treatment or through outright healing of the condition. Through all this, pray that the Lord will comfort and strengthen him, using this in his life as a testimony of who Christ is – may the lost family and friends looking on see Jesus in him and know that they can trust their lives to the Savior.

We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.”   2 Corinthians 4:8-10 (NIV)
 

Mr. and Mrs. G ask for prayer

I just got off the phone from a very sad conversation with a friend.  She and her husband ask for prayer that they will hear from the Lord soon in what to do next, and that He will provide jobs for them that pay enough to cover rent, food, and basic necessities. They moved here not long ago from a neighboring country, believing that it was a calling from God and that He would use them to further His Kingdom through their lives. Now they are wondering what His plan is and are not able to maintain things as they are while they wait for direction.  They are both educated and very hard-working, able people, but just can’t find jobs that they can live on.  She has been doing some housecleaning for someone but they can’t go on this way.  She said they are willing to stay here or go to another country, but she’s aware that many times jobs you find on the Internet are scams and dangerous situations.

Please pray for this precious brother and sister, that the Lord will strengthen them and lead them in the way He would have them go; ask that He will soon show them what steps to take next and that He will provide for their needs.  May He bring them through this time of difficulty to a place of joy, somehow using it to His glory and their good.

Day 30 of Month of Prayer

Thank you so much to everyone who’s been praying with us through the 2018 May month of prayer!  To our great surprise we’ve discovered that according to the calendar we published there’s apparently….no May 30 this year.  (Definitely a moment of shock and awe here.)  Sorry about that!  Please join us in lifting up this very important prayer request today:

May 30, 2018:  Pray for those around us who have been hearing a Gospel witness, that God will soften their hearts and they will turn to Him for forgiveness and new life.

Many of the spiritual conversations have been one-time encounters, some including the gift of a Bible or Gospel of John, but a large number are ongoing, ever-deepening discussions in the context of a real relationship.  To respect the privacy of these friends we of course do not publish who they are, but God knows and is calling them by name. Join us in urgent prayer that the walls around their hearts will come down and they will find the peace and freedom that Jesus gives.

“For he says, ‘In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.’  I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.”   2 Corinthians 6:2 (NIV)