Latvia (MNN) — Greater Europe Mission field workers in
Latvia were excited to see what God would do in youth ministry.
However, time passed, and there were few results. They
continued to pray and reach out to the older kids in their neighborhood by
playing games with them.
Eventually, their vision changed. Instead, they began to pray for a group of
friends to respond. Jonathon and
Deborah wrote, "Once this happened, we would treat them as true disciples, with
all the potential of adults. We wouldn't try to 'entertain' them into the
Kingdom (though we would take time to celebrate being part of the Kingdom);
rather, we would immediately call them to join us as we follow Jesus."
Their prayers were answered in 2008 when a group of
neighborhood kids came to know Jesus together. The team is in a discipling
relationship with 40 young people. Their goal is to see them become disciples
of Jesus who immediately seek to disciple others.
As part of the discipling process, the team walked the
group through the Apostle Paul's syllabus. They introduced them to their identity and to who they can be in Christ.
Then they invited them to pray with a group leader and begin a new life.
This January, the
team spent an evening summarizing Paul's
syllabus for the Christian life with another group of local teens. They gave an invitation to respond to the
Gospel–and one girl received Christ.
From there, she immediately
wanted to get involved with a project to
raise money to reach local children for the Lord. Her hunger for learning became evident in her
first Bible study, in which she didn't know how to look up a reference.
Deborah noted that "within
a week, she had agreed to meet with another girl on her own and lead her through
the Bible study that we had just covered."
The goal of their youth ministry is not only to see young people
come to know Jesus, but to see them become disciples of Jesus who immediately
seek to disciple others.
Many of the youth now participate in outreach elsewhere. Together, this
team supports pioneer work with non-churched young people in two other
communities. Click here for more