“Dad, has anything changed already after seven years?” After dinner, when we are still talking together, our youngest suddenly comes up with this question.
Last Sunday we went to a baptism service with the whole family in one of the Roma churches that Hessel visits weekly. From closeby the children were able to see in what circumstances the Roma live in, but also what joy it means if someone comes to faith in the Lord Jesus and how their life is changed radically through that; especially in everyday practice.
So has anything changed ever since we moved to Hungary? Behind that is also the question: is there any use for us living here for Roma ministry? That we gave up our comfortable life in Holland, and have to miss our family to go live in an other country and in an other culture? Constantly being confronted with the fact that we are actually strangers here? It was good to talk these things over as a family.
When Christy came with this question, there were two things we thought were important to emphasize to the children. Of course, now and then there are signs of result, but many times not as many as we might wish. The first thing that we thought was very important, is that the Bible says that God’s Word has power in itself and will not return to Him void. It always does something; perhaps sometimes only in the long haul.
The other thing we thought was important, is the fact that we are obedient to God’s calling for us, even if we don’t always see why we should or what ’s the use of it. We believe that living in the will of God will eventually give a better life than when we lean on our own understanding. So what has changed after seven years? Next to several encouraging things we see happen among Roma in any case that we ourselves have changed…