As we processed together early this morning before our day began, each one of us on the Latvia Link Summer Trip team sensed a call from the Lord to focus on ‘being’ with Him and others instead of our standard operating procedure of ‘doing’. God has been affirming His call to follow Him and to care for others through prayer. We were blessed with just those opportunities as today progressed.
We met with Vineta Zale, Chuck Kelley’s Office Manager in Latvia for Bridges International, and with Lienite Bemere, Counselor and Director for Bridges International Latvia for a 9am breakfast this morning. We just plain had fun as we listened to Lienite share about her heart for the women of Latvia. Vineta had to leave early, but after breakfast we spent some time in prayer together with Lienite in the apartment we are renting from Chuck. It was a sweet, sweet time together with Lienite and we all grew to love her and want to continue supporting her in prayer.
In the midst of this time Laurel Luke and her friend Amanda showed up at the apartment! What a wonderful time we had listening to her share stories about the two Orphan Camps she has helped with! Laurel is an amazing young woman and Amanda is the answer to Laurel’s prayer for a slightly older friend to come along side her and be an encouragement and support. Once again we spent some time in prayer with Laurel and Amanda and then headed out on a bit more of a walking tour with Laima. At the end of our walking tour Laurel and Amanda caught a bus for their next appointment and Laima took us to Riga University to enjoy lunch in the basement cafeteria there. The food was simple, inexpensive and good! It just plain hit the spot!
On our way back to the apartment from our late lunch, we got a first dose of the Latvian Children’s Song and Dance festival that is happening this week. Not too long later Kim and I met up with a young couple from Matthews Church. They had some of the very hard to come by tickets to the festival performance tonight and invited two of our team to join them for the dance and then for dinner at their home. Kim and I were the lucky ones! At the same time Laima, Liz and Linda went to the home of another couple for dinner. I honestly can’t share much about Liz and Linda’s experience (except that they had a wonderful time) because we’ve not had time to talk about it. But I can tell you that Kim and I thoroughly enjoyed our time with the young couple we met. The Children’s Dance and Song festival was wonderful and so was everything about our time with our new friends. When all of the children were on the stadium floor at the festival there were 16,700 children! The children practice the dances all year long, but then they spend a week in kind of a dance camp where the individual area groups of children come together and practice much larger intricately choreographed routines. The discipline and cooperation of the children was amazing and the color and beauty a feast for the eyes.
I’m going to call it a night because we have plans again tomorrow morning! Hope to write more later. Thank you so much for your prayers!