For those of you who know how we believe KIDStory ought to be taught, you can imagine my surprise when I walked into the conference room this morning here in Erbil, Iraq.  Normally I can quickly change the room around but that wasn’t about to happen today. As you can see, it did not hold us back!! We taught by example that you can use the space given to you and create an environment that works best for you and your students.  A very elaborate, straight forward room could still be “KIDStory-ized.”

What an incredible group of people we have the opportunity to serve.  From nuns to missionaries, to Sunday School teachers from all kinds of denominations, to ISIS captives – the mixture of people is quite astounding.  The Bible Society, along with NEO, coordinated this workshop and as it turns out, many of the people are working with children, widows and refugees who have been severely traumatized. 

Everyone is excited about what they are learning and already talking about how they can use KIDStory in their context.  There will be more to come tomorrow as we finish up this tour of duty!

Be in prayer for all those whom we have had the opportunity to serve these past 12 days.  They are doing an incredible work in raising up the next generation to know and be loved by Jesus!

As I begin what I think is a rather long journey home, I pause and recognize it is insignificant in comparison to the road that lies ahead for many who have been with us these last 2 days.

I think of Helen whom God has opened up an incredible ministry to young women who have escaped the clutches of ISIS.  I see the faces of the seven young women whom Helen brought to the workshop. I pray for the healing of their hearts and minds as they undoubtedly relive the horror of watching family members being killed, the brutal abuse they endured and the knowledge that some of their siblings are still in captivity.  I cherish the occasional smile they gave, praying they are encountering the love of Jesus as they hear His Story, that the Spirit brings them living hope and they can receive the acceptance and love extended to them.

I think of the various churches and ministries who came believing that God was going to show up and give them tools to reach the widows and orphans God had entrusted to them.  I think of the various denominations that were represented and saw how they could be unified in a common God given purpose. I think of ministries like Samaritan’s Purse who are reaching into the displaced Muslim population with education programs for the children but can’t speak the name of Jesus.  They reach them through the stories found in the Bible and the love of His people. 

I pray for these faithful servants knowing there will be exhilarating times when they see breakthroughs in the lives they serve, while at the same time they experience their hearts being broken when those they are endeavoring to love reject them.

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