Two weeks ago we were introduced to the Chinese church, Richmond Chinese Baptist Church, that we share a building. Ray, Jessica's dad, preached and it was all translated into English. It was very cool to see the Chinese characters on the screen, along with the English words, and the two congregations worshipped in unison.
This past Sunday was my first Sunday to preach at Towers and it went well. No one got up a left and they all said see you next week. That is a good thing, Ha!
One of the most amazing things that has happened, happened this past Friday. Jess and I took the kids to school and we decided to go on a morning coffee date to Tim Hortons. Andrew was with us and as we sat and ate our donuts and tea biscuits and drank our double doubles, Andrew caught the attention of this Russian lady named Alexandra. As Alexandra became infatuated with Andrew, we were able to strike up a conversation. It was the typical, what is your name, where are you from, and what do you do. I love it when people as me those questions, because I get to say, I just moved here from Las Vegas and I am a pastor of a church.
As I told these things to Alexandra, she looked at me in amazement. She obviously said, I 've been to Vegas, but what she said next I never expected. She told me that she has never met a pastor before. She also said that much of the Russian community (over 100,000 people in Greater Vancouver area) had probably never met a Christian pastor before. She told me she was a radio host at a show nearby and asked me to think about coming on the show to be interviewed. She thinks the Russian community would like to hear what I had to say about being a pastor. Just so you know, she said she has interviewed government officials from Israel and Russia on the show and it is broadcast to the UN. I asked her if she was sure she wanted to interview me. Ha!
We began to talk about what a pastor does and who a pastor is and I was able to explain to her that it is different from a priest (that was her main question). She couldn't believe I was not worried about "title." I had just started sharing with her that I base my beliefs on the teaching of the Bible and that I follow the example of Jesus Christ because I have a relationship with Him. She was amazed that I said those things. I was just getting ready to ask her if she believed in God (if you know the history of Russia you will know why I would ask that) and her and her colleagues had to go.
I am going to ask you to pray for Alexandra. I am praying that God will grab a hold of this lady and radically change her life. When I asked her about her religious background she referred to herself as a Russian and a Jew. I emailed her this morning to try to connect again and continue our conversation.
I also will ask you to pray for Silas. Silas is a barista at one of my local Starbucks and she is from India. She remembers my name and she is a very nice lady who is always smiling. Pray that she would come to experience the one true God.
God is at work here and we are very blessed to be a part of what He is doing.