My First Ninety Days: Ernie Wyrick in Alaska
Here is a little of my heart, I hope there something you can use. I could go on and on about God’s goodness and mercy.
Nancy and I can remember when we first arrived in Russia. When we first arrived we can remember being questioned like spies on the airplane and the security guards kept asking how we got there. You just don’t get on a plane to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatka, you have to have permission. They were totally confused on how we got there and did not know what to do with us. Praise the Lord that there was a missionary at the airport to met us and told the guards that we were meeting him. Thank the Lord he was there but God had it all worked out long ago that we were going be there, we just needed to trust Him to work out the details. They finally let us off the plane and God had already provided a place for us to stay at some scientist apartment complex and when that was no longer available. God had open up another place for us to live and both of this apartments were fully finished. We lived in the last apartment until we left Russia. Once we got settled in we began to go out and shop and ride the buses just like the rest of the community. Even though everyone new we were Americans and stuck out like sore thumbs, we began to befriend people in the community, we lived as they did, walked were they walked.
The biggest thing I think helps no matter were you are is that you try to become part of the community, you keep your standards, don’t compromise but don’t try to live like Americans in a foreign country or a lower 48er in Rural Alaska.
I can remember when there was a shortage of fuel in Russia and the power was out for days that I stood in line for hours to by candles and to get a small gas stove to cook with just like most of the community had to do. There was a run on the bank we stood inline to get cash and we would go to the bank to exchange dollars and wait in line.
Our shipping boxes got lost and see God work in a man’s heart that instead of having to pay a large amount of money to get the containers. God answered prayer that where only a few hours before he wanted about $1500 and then when we met him after lunch we ended up paying about $20 or so.
Looking back over all these years, it is amazing how God has worked in so many ways and spare our lives and worked out the impossible when it just did not seem possible.
I know this has gotten long but thinking about what God has done for us, I cannot praise Him enough.
To sum this up, just trust the Lord and become a servant to those you are trying reach. If they have a need or problem and you can help, help. I have said many times, more people will see a sermon, than will every come hear me preach one. Still today we, show people we care by going to the ER with them, shoveling the sidewalk or mow their yard. You would be surprised what will open a heart and give a opportunity to witness to a person.
Be sensitive to the Holy Spirit, do not waste a perfect opportunity to show someone the love of God. You are there to stay no matter the hardships, show them you love them and that God does also.
I remember a missionary friend of ours, that served here in Alaska for many years until his health got so bad he had to leave. He told us that when the town flooded every spring a missionary would give up and leave. His first spring there and his house flooded and the town watched to see what he was going to do. They figured, well, here another one goes, but no, he stayed, he repaired, and did just like the everyone else did. They watched him and watched him. He finally won their trust, when they saw him struggle as they struggled but he stuck with it no matter what he faced. They can see who is committed and who is not. People are the same everywhere, they watch every move you make, show them you care and God loves them.
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