Romania: Seeing the joy in our faces

Music is powerful. Music that glorifies Christ is even more powerful. And we’ve already seen it cut through boundaries of language, culture, and strongly held traditions.

The last 36 hours have been intense for us here, for in this short amount of time, we’ve had the opportunity to hold 3 different worship concerts in 3 different cities… and see God move in exciting ways. It’s been incredible to be a part of what He is doing here, and everyone here is euphoric about it, despite being completely exhausted.

You might have known if you read Friday’s post that we had a huge concert Saturday night with the potential to reach a lot of people. We were blessed to even partner with the local government of Alba Lulia, and have it promoted all over the city, with prime real estate to hold the concert right in the busiest part of the city with tourists and locals all around. Last night, God blew away our expectations and we had an incredible turn out. With many people in seats and a few standing or walking around, we estimate that we were able to share the gospel message through song, scripture, and testimony to easily over a thousand people. Everything about the concert turned out great… the gospel was clearly presented, the music sounded awesome, even down to the small details like having an incredibly beautiful day to put on this concert! But the best part was afterwards, when all team got to spend some time just hanging out and getting to know some of the folks who attended. God clearly moved through our concert and used it and our team to touch the lives of so many different people. 

One of our ladies was approached by a Romanian woman who was just so appreciative to us for putting on the concert. She could tell our worship was genuine and was moved by that. Like most Romanians, she has been “going to church” her whole life. I won’t say what denomination of church she goes to, because that doesn’t matter. What does matter is that there is a difference when you get to experience worship and Bible teaching with people who truly love God and want to live their lives as reflection of that. Like a lot of churches here and even back in America, God is not at the center of our worship, tradition is. This woman said she heard about a church like ours being built nearby and she would normally never consider going to a church like ours, different than what she’s always known… but, she wants to give it a try.

Another really cool story: some of our ladies were approached by another Romanian woman, who was also very emotional after the concert. She told them she heard about the concert but wasn’t planning to go. She was at home, laying in bed and felt this urge like she needed to go for some reason. She came to the concert and God spoke to her heart right where she was. She explained to our ladies that she felt like she was at a crossroads in her life and needed to make a decision (side note… for those of you who don’t know, our theme for our concerts is “Crossroads”, so it makes this story extra cool). One of our ladies, who thankfully speaks Romanian, was able to pour into her with prayer and scripture, and this woman gave her life to the Lord. How amazing is that? This woman wasn’t even planning to come but felt urged to and came anyway… she told our ladies, “I couldn’t understand what you were singing, but I could see the joy of God in your faces.” Incredible.

Today (Sunday) was yet another amazing day. After riding last night’s mountaintop experience, we were pumped to worship with the congregation at Deva Holy Trinity Baptist Church this morning. It was absolutely moving, sitting in the back of the sanctuary as we all sang “Amazing Grace” together in our native tongue. It’s a beautiful glimpse of what heaven will be like as believers of all nations get to worship around the throne, so that’s why these moments are so powerful. Worship transcends boundaries.

This evening was icing on the cake as we were able to present our worship concert one more time in a different place, the town of Sebes. In this beautiful, quaint town is a 900 year-old-cathedral and we were given the honor and privilege to present our concert there. There aren’t enough adjectives to describe this stunning place, with it’s ornate architecture and beautiful works of art. Once again, the Lord exceeded our expectations and so many showed up that it was standing room only. We were able to again present the gospel to the people of Sebes, and I’m excited to see what the response will be from tonight’s concert.

Tomorrow, we begin our first few days or doing different ministry activities in the local communities, such as visiting kids at a pediatric hospital, serving breakfast at a home for the elderly, to holding VBS type programs for kids in the villages around Alba Lulia. We’re sure it will be a great day, finishing tomorrow evening with another concert, this time in a banquet style. Our mission partners from Harmony Baptist Church challenged their congregation to invite their friends who don’t know Christ to attend tomorrow’s concert, and rumor has it that they responded in a big way and we might be able to share the gospel with a lot more people tomorrow. We invite you to join us in praying for our work tomorrow, and that ultimately God will be glorified in all that we do. Thanks for your love, prayers, and encouragement! Can’t wait to update you again on what’s happening here in Romania!