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Disappointment

It seemed at late that the tide was turning here in Croatia with missionaries. We were expecting 3 missionaries to come this fall on survey trips. We had high hopes that soon we would no longer be the only IFB missionaries here.


With the weekend came the news that one of those missionaries has chosen to go to South America as a missionary, and with good reason and the other has decided that it is going to be another 3 or 4 years before he can even start deputation. We praise the Lord that one of the families purchased plane tickets this weekend for their survey.


You know the hardest thing we deal with here in Croatia is loneliness. I know, I know, with Christ we are never alone, I know that and we're not, but some good fellowship sure is nice.
Since we arrived in 2000, we have seen two families come and pretty much turn around and leave for one reason or the other and now as it seems things are changing it looks like maybe they aren't. Yes I know I'm whining!


So I've been thinking alot lately well actually for the last 6 years, why hasn't God sent more missionaries to Croatia. We are the only IFB missionaries here and our church is the only IFB church in the whole country of Croatia so there is an obvious need. So I wonder about two things: is it God that isn't calling people to Croatia or is it people whom God has called that aren't obeying? You know in all of the Balkans (croatia, serbia, bosnia, macedonia, albania and montenegro) I can count the IFB missionaries on one hand. For 20 million plus souls there are only a handful of IFB missionaries. I just wonder if our hearts have grown so selfish or cold that we are no longer moved by the missions presentations, if souls in need no longer matter as much as plasma TVs, boats and new kitchens. I really ponder these questions alot lately.

Croatia is not Mexico, people don't except Jesus here like they do there. Croats are basically very prideful, like we Americans aren’t?? :0) But they, like Europe in general feel no need for a relationship with Jesus they are simply happy with their sacraments and rosaries. Content to let the Catholic Church have the relationship and themselves just ride on her coat tales. The idea is, "I don't want to know the truth, who cares if I'm in error my life is fine like it is."

So Croatia isn't an easy place to work, hearts are very cold but there are hearts here empty with out Christ. So is God not calling people or are people so far from God these days that they can't hear His call? I don't know, I think about this often.


When we came our kids were 2, 4 and 7 and I constantly worried about their loneliness and prayed for missionaries to come. Now they are 14, 11 and 9 and I wonder if they will come. It would be nice just to have a lady to go shopping with or get a cup of coffee and kids for our kids to play with.


I know this sounds like a bunch of whining, it is! I'm not whining against God, no He's wonderful whatever state we're in but we sure had our hopes up that this was the beginning for a change here in Croatia. A change so our church and the Christians here wouldn't be alone and they and yes we would have some good fellowship.


There is still a family coming for a survey in less than a month and we're so excited but also a little scared. We have had missionaries come for a survey before and decided that Croatia wasn't for them so we're a little gun shy but I'm going to try to have faith. Try to think positive not that that helps at all but it makes the days go by nicer. I know God has a plan for the hearts of the 5 million Croats here in Croatia, I know He does. It's not His desire to see anyone perish so I have to think that my second thought is correct, Christians just aren't answering the call anymore. How sad with our growth and prosperity we have out grown the need to hear God speak and guide.

15 comments:

  1. Hi Tori.
    I think a lot of us are suffering from lonliness these days. I feel isolated most of the tme and I'm surrounded with people who speak the same language and are Christians. I really do think satan is trying his hardest to make us want to quit the race.

    I'll be praying that God provides you and your family with friends that you can share your burden with.

    As for why they're aren't more in missionaries there.. I'd tend to think it was selfish reasons. I know God wants all the earth to know His will. How sad he must be about the situation there.

    Hugs & Prayers

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  2. Tori~ Here's a hug for you! {{Tori}} I know some missionaries who have to deal with that same thing. I'm specifically thinking of some in the CR and other places throughout Europe. I guess we as Christians get used to hearing about Africa or South America or (like you mentioned) Mexico as *the place* to go and only consider that as a place of calling, and not the entire world.

    But you are right. Lonliness is hard. I can't pretend that I have the answer or that I know what to do, but I will pray for you! And thank you for reminding me never to take anything for granted as a stateside Christian. I don't know all the struggles, battles, frustrations, and tears, but our loving Father does:) Cling to the cross Tori!

    Praying for you,
    Anne

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  3. Dearest Tori,
    Thanks for stopping by, and for the anniversary wishes, in fact, today Neil and I are headed out for a belated anniversary get-away.

    Believe me when I tell you that I understand what you are saying. I do not know why more people do not answer the call. FOr that matter, even if they do answer the call, it takes about three years (!!!!!!)for the churches to "answer the call" to support them!

    FOr all my dear American friends who might read this, please forgive me for what I am about to say. Most Americans are too wrapped up in their own affluent lives to even consider leaving them.

    What you said about Mexico is true too. And it may be that Mexico will be sending missionaries to Croatia. The Latinos are beginning to feel that the torch of missions has been passed to them.

    As a former MK, trust me, your kids can turn out OK, even better than OK. They have you and your husband as their friends and playmates and there are no better friends than that!

    And, you have us!!!! All your bloggy friends who love your dearly in the Lord will be praying for you today.

    Also, I feel so priviledged to be counted among those who answered the call. Carey, Taylor, Goforth, Carmichael, Judson, Liddell.

    Love,
    Rhonda

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  4. Oh Tori, I can just imagine how lonely it is out there for you and your family! Without other IFB folks to fellowship with, it is very hard to keep one's self encouraged. I'm sure that you are always at the Saviour's side clinging with hope for souls saved. I'm praying for you and the Croats in need of Christ!

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  5. What a blessing to others that missionaries traveling to spread The Word can be! :)

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  6. Tori, other ladies have given reasons for the lack of missionaries these days, and I agree. One I'd like to add is that parents many times hold their children back. Their children hear God's call in their elementary and teen years, but Mama can't let Junior or Susie go, can't face the thought of not seeing her grandchildren when they come, so she lets them know in one way or another that she doesn't want them to go - either outright telling them or by her sighs and tears when they talk of their call.

    Many people we met on deputation said, "I just couldn't do what you're doing." Yes, you could. We were in our mid-30's, established in a fundamental Baptist church, on staff, not wealthy but taken care of, but we heard God's call and just went. To this day, I don't know how on earth we just pulled up stakes and moved to another country - we just took one step at a time, doing what God allowed us to do. And here we are. People try to figure it all out, but they don't have to - God has it all figured out!

    I think I feel a blog post coming on . . . (((Tori))) hang in there - I'm praying for you today!

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  7. I will pray that the Lord will meet some of the desires of your heart. Many blessings and a far away {{{hug}}}

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  8. Tori, I'm glad you stopped by my little blog. And I'm sorry to hear of your loniness! I will pray that the Lord will bring you comfort today and a friend too.

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  9. Sis. Tori...I want to just give you a great big hug!!

    (((((((((((((((((HUGS))))))))))))))

    I know what you are speaking of here. We supported (we don't any longer) a missionary family that the wife got so lonely that it began to affect her in her dealings with and relationship to her husband. It got so bad that they had to come off the field until they can get their marriage straightened out. How sad!! I know that missionary life can't be easy and that it has to get lonely. And I believe the devil works on the wife more than the husbands. We as women need frienships and encouragment from others or we will crumble beneath the load. I'm sure there are other missionary families that struggle with this as well. How sad that they let the devil get the victory. I earnestly pray for ALL missionaries and their families. Especially for the wives and the children. I'm so glad that you shared this with others who may take it for granted that missionary families handle all things so well. People need to remember they are human like we are. I love you and pray for you often!!!

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  10. Hi Tori!!!
    I just wanted to let you know that I am praying for you. I cannot begin to imagine how you feel- some good days, some not so good days, I'm sure. :) When those "not so good days" come, I hope you will post here on your blog so that I, as well as all the others here, can pray for you and your family.

    God is so good to provide us with email. Maybe we can't sit down together over a cup of coffee, but we CAN email and "talk" that way.

    I am PRAYING!! May I add your family's name to our church's pray list??

    His,
    Mrs. U

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  11. Oh Tori.....I, too am saddened by how long it takes missionaries to actually get to the field! It should NOT take as long as it does.

    I'm so sorry you're feeling sad but as these ladies have said already....we here in blogland care about you and your family very much!

    {{{HUGS for Tori!}}}

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  12. Hi, Tori~ My heart just breaks for you. I believe that you & your family seem happy & fine with your calling there, but it does seem like it could be so lonely at times. I agree with you about Christians seeming to be growing colder & more distant from being completely willing to doing God's Will. We are really digging deep, trying so hard to get close enough to know what we are supposed to be doing, but there is so much background noise. It is so discouraging. I pray that God will send more Christians your way to fellowship with. In the meantime, I am just an email away! :0)

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  13. Praying that the Lord will send some help your way!

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  14. Thanks ladies for all the sweet comments and virtual hugs. I sure needed them. I know God has a plan, I never doubt that but, well you know. :0)
    I'm looking forward to meeting a new family that will be here in a month for a survey trip. We're so excited. They are bringing their 4 little ones too. We love kiddos!!!

    Again thanks so much!

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  15. Hi Tori! I just got to your blog for the first time, and I am one of those missionary wives just entering into the fray, learning the language. We talked to so many "veterin" missionaries who had just grown skeptical of young people who said they were going to a field.
    There is a concerted effort against missionaries and pastors, all over the world by our enemy. Yes, families hold their children back. (A missionary I know had his mother offer to buy him a house to keep him near her.) Yes, Satan attacks the wife. Yes, it takes too long to get to the field.
    Jesus didn't ask us to pray for the white fields-He asked us to pray for laborers! And do we ever need it!
    I'll be praying for you, sister!

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