Saturday, June 22, 2013

Ich freue mich, sie kennen zu lernen!

Saturday morning, we got ready to help out with decorating for KIBA.  Boys take less time to get ready than girls.

Everyone helped with decorating.  Caleb is working to string flags.

Sean and Jack were also stringing flags to hang from the ceiling.

Beckie, as the resident artist, was commissioned to make the signs that people see as they enter the school.

Paper chains decorating the "main stage".

Our fellow Minnesotan, Gloria.

We all spent a lot of time looking up.

Mercy and Evie hanging out together.  They'll be doing this a lot in the next week.

Everything Sam does with great concentration, he does with his mouth open.

On the way back to our apartment, we stopped at a produce market.  Unbelievable in-season fruit!

In the afternoon, we met with Mike Edwards, the Berlin city team lead for ReachGlobal.  He was able to give much insight into what it might be like to be full-time missionaries in Europe, struggles, wisdom, and practical ideas as well.

Meeting at Mike Edwards' apartment.  Front: Dave Lee, resident of Berlin who heads up KIBA.  He's from Scotland.  I'm apparently admiring something Brian's saying.

Our most amazing experience in Berlin thus far.  This is John and Gayle Butrin.  They are a ministry called "Matthew's Table".  Their home is beautiful, and they had graciously invited us to partake of a meal with them and ask questions about how they do their ministry.  A beautiful, God-hearing couple making a
difference in a unique way, which they've obviously been gifted in.

Everything about the meal was delicious, and everything about the conversation was just as tantalizing as the food.

 "Matthew's Table" was birthed in a desire to incorporate their love of food, cooking, and entertaining with sharing the gospel.  It is an intentional way of life that finds people in their home on a regular basis - sometimes up to 70 at a time - as they host small concerts with various musicians they happen upon, Christmas open houses, or just families they want to build relationships with, all who are on the road to Jesus.

People are curious to experience their hospitality because it's so unusual in Berlin to just invite someone over to your house unless you already know them really well.  They've become so well known - without advertisements - that people will come up to them in the street and ask if he's "Matthew".  He clarifies his name, but then invites them over for an evening.  Currently, they have a grand piano that is being "stored" in their home as it waits to be sold.  Sam played it for us.  They shared that many pianists have come through their home looking at the piano, ending up not buying, but then agreeing to give a little intimate concert.  So they'll print up some flyers, post them around the neighborhood, and have 25 people in their home for a fairly impromptu performance, complete with a luncheon afterward - all offered free of charge in a desire to reach out to people and make themselves available to get involved in their lives.  In other words, they're fully embracing the idea (Biblical) of discipleship.
They were a blessing to us and have been a blessing to so many others.  If the Lord puts it on your hearts, pray for their continued effective ministry of the Holy Spirit to those God puts in their lives and their home.

On a side note, Sam did some ministry when he got up after we were done with dinner and started clearing the table.  It brought me much joy to see!

Please pray for Brian, as in about 11 hours, (3 am Sunday morning your time, so you may want to pray before you go to bed!) he will be delivering his first sermon.  With a translator.

*Post title translation: "I'm very glad to meet you!"

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