터어키 Erdogdu 목사님 선교편지 2014.3.4.

선교편지
작성자
KCB
작성일
2014-03-13 17:27
조회
262
04.03.2014

Dear brothers and sisters,

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. May our Lord’s peace and love be with you. We rejoice in and praise the Lord for His redemption, mercy, love and grace. He is the Lord of lords and the King of kings. Despite all evil going on in the world now, God is good, sovereign, and taking care of His children. May His name be exalted and His will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

I want to apologize for not being able to send you any email about us and our ministry for a long time. It has been a very busy, tiring and difficult fall and winter for us. It is because this year’s flue hit our family again and again. I got sick the fourth time two days ago and still recovering from it. Doctor told me that the difficulty of this year’s flue is that it changes its form and shape each time it enters in a body. Therefore, when the same germs come back to the same body, the body does not recognize it so the person gets sick again and again. This is what happened to our family. We got sick multiple times over the last 6 months. Praise the Lord that this year’s flue did not cause anything serious in our health. However, when we got sick, we spent days in bed and took longer than ever to recover. This situation also affected our lives and slowed down everything we were supposed to do.

I do not remember if I had mentioned in my previous letter, but my wife and I had been expecting our second baby. And, our second baby was born on the 10th of February 2014. It is a baby girl. Her name is “Sevgi” which means “Love” in Turkish. Our first daughter’s name is “Bilge” which means “Wisdom” in Turkish. So, God has blessed us with Wisdom and Love in our family . We praise the Lord for these precious babies. They are such great blessings from the Lord. My wife and I are doing great. We are little bit busier now, yet growing in our faith, character and parenting by the help of our Lord. Please continue praying for our family so that we may continue to grow in our faith, share the Gospel with our neighbors, and do the ministry God has given us.

Our church has been doing well. God has been shaping our Christian character and transforming us to Christ-likeness day by day through His Word and Spirit. We have had 13 seekers visited our church since last summer. They heard about our church through either a friend or internet. One of them wants to accept Jesus Christ as His Lord and Savior. He is doing his military service now (military service is mandatory in Turkey) and will finish it in November 2014. After his return, I will spend some more time with him and learn if he seriously wants to be a Christian. If he says yes then we will put him in our baptism course and baptize him after completing the course, if Lord wills. There is another brother who has been coming to our church for almost a year, accepted Jesus Christ as His Lord and Savior and finished our baptism course recently. We will baptize him next month. Praise the Lord for bringing the lost ones to His local churches here in Turkey. We continue to share and preach the Gospel from the pulpit and through the meetings during the week and by meeting people outside. Please continue praying for our church so that we may be faithful and obedient followers of Christ. There were also problems we faced for a long time. As you may have heard, last summer there was a big political chaos going on in Turkey. It gets bigger these days, though. Unfortunately, these political tensions affect the local churches negatively because Christian believers in the churches also have their own political views. When these views clash, it also creates some tension in the church as well. This is what happened in our church last summer. Two of our members attended the protests against the government in the streets. Unfortunately they got involved in the violent ones, too. They also created some political arguments at the church on Sundays. After I warned them, they felt like I sided with the others whom they were protesting and left the church. This was very hurting to whole church because we had known these two brothers for a long time. And they decided to leave our church because of a very secular reason. Well, they attend another church now and we pray that they may understand their priorities in their lives. Hopefully they will understand to put Christ first before anything. Despite these problems, God has been gracious to our church. We continue to learn, grow and change by the Word of God and the working of the Spirit in our lives. Please continue praying for our church and the Gospel ministry here.

As I mentioned in my previous letters, I have been praying for some elders for our church. Unfortunately, I am the only elder/pastor in our church. I have been praying God to show me the candidates for eldership in our church. After praying and pondering on it for a long time, there are two brothers in my mind now. I am still not sure about them but continue to ask God. I will continue praying and start fasting for God’s discernment. Please pray for me and for our church so that we may move in accordance with God’s will. But I praise the Lord at least for these two candidates. They are dearly brothers in Christ and has been serving the Lord for a long time.

I still pray for my seminary dream. Besides praying, I try to make little preparations for it. For example, I began to teach seminars in our church on Sundays. I prepare my notes in a way that they can be turned into class notes for the future classes I will be teaching. We also need to translate some theological books we can use for this purpose. There are couple books in my mind but I need to find finances for their translation, press and distribution, and ask translation permissions from the authors and the publishers. It is a difficult process for me but it can be done. So, I will continue to make this kind of preparations and hopefully use them when God will provide this seminary to us, if He wills of course. Please pray with me in this seminary vision so that it may come true if it is in accordance with God’s will. My heart’s desire with this seminary is to train leaders, elders and pastors for the Gospel ministry in Turkey. The harvest is great and the workers, especially the Turkish workers, are few in our country. Our desire is to see Turkish Christians share the Gospel with our people, plant the churches all around the country and start to think about sending missionaries all around the world as it was done in the first century in Antioch where we got our name as “Christians” the first time (Acts 11:25-26). And I pray that this future seminary would be a blessing to all the Christians in Turkey, and even outside of Turkey.

Thank you very much for your prayers and support, my brothers and sisters. We really appreciate and thank you for your participation in the ministry in Turkey.

Your brother,
Cetin Erdogdu
Pastor of Bornova Protestant Church.
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