When we think of Europe, we think of great food, old buildings, many languages, Art & Architecture. One thing we seldom think of is how “post-Christian” that area of the world is. We look at the artwork of The Renaissance and it is full of paintings and sculptures depicting faith in God, belief in the Bible and an understanding of Jesus as The Christ. So, what happened?!
Years and years of misusing God’s name is what happened, and the people of NE Spain simply chose to not believe in God (or the Church) in Europe. Not Catholic, not Protestant, not Anabaptist. A short study of Christian history in Europe can give you an idea as to why the “twisted Gospel” was not something to be desired. There are churches in every city, and almost every town, but the TRUE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST is virtually absent.
I was given the opportunity in early April to join Hal Lehman (FEC Missions Board Director) and a few pastors from the FEC to go to the Basque country of Spain to see some of the work being done through their workers. Each day we visited a different region to learn, pray and see the physical and spiritual condition of Basque country.
I must say, the food was awesome, the sights were beautiful and the people were friendly. Each town or city we went to would be a wonderful and exciting place to live. The only (and common) problem in each of them was that The Church was absent. Imagine… no local body of believers. What an empty thought and existence.
The workers there taught me (us) so much. They truly understand the history and the culture of the people that they are ministering to. They have each established themselves well in the respective towns they live in. They have made friends and they have business models that are working, as well as some that are being explored. BUT ONE THING WAS ABUNDANTLY CLEAR IN BASQUE COUNTRY… THE REAL WORK…IS PRAYER.
We sat for a time in each church that we visited and prayed. The workers in Basque country pray…and they know that it is going to take extraordinary prayer to win these people to the Lord. They simply ask you to join them. Visit this link below to learn about the Basque people and how to pray for them specifically.
One additional thing I was able to do in Spain happened after the other pastors returned to the States: A marriage retreat for the 3 families that are working there. We went up to a house in the mountains and I was able to lead these couples in some teaching, discussion and counseling about their marriages. Marriage is hard anywhere, but it has some added pressure in foreign fields. In addition to the work among the Basque, I also ask you to pray for these workers families and marriages, that they will stay strong as they lead others in the Gospel.
May God’s name be praised,