This morning we struggled to sleep. We were so tired last night that we fell asleep around 6 pm. We woke up ready to start the day at 10pm (this was not good). Jose Luis and I spent from 10pm till around 1am praying for our families, Calvary, and the people we were to be meeting on our trip. We also spent time journaling and writing. At about 1am Jose Luis went back to room and I tried to sleep again. It was moderately successful. I slept an additional couple of hours and at 3:30am gave up on sleep.
Early that morning I picked up a book that I have been trying to read for several months and crashed through it. It is called, “From Megachurch to Multiplication” by Chris Galanos. It was a great read. I finished it’s 300 + plus pages around 7:30. It was a good start to a great day. I would recommend the book to anyone who is considering adopting disciple making strategies inside a pre-existing mature Church. It documents the journey that a large church in Lubbock is pursuing as they strive for a vision of reaching 1,000,000 people for Christ in the next 10 years.
David met us and we took off for Gori. Gori is a famous town here in Georgia. It is the birth place of the late Russian Dictator Joseph Stalin. In the town is a large museum that serves as both a historical landmark and a rather eerie shrine to the infamous leader. While Stalin elevated Russia to a global superpower, he did so while executing over 700,000 people and by causing food insecurities that saw additional millions die through famine and starvation.
In Gori we met with two couples, Niko & Teo, and Soso & Nino. These couples were present at last year’s church planting training in Bakuriani. Since last year, these two families have been pursuing a movement strategy in Gori. The resistance to the gospel is very strong. Over the last year they have shared the gospel with hundreds of people, but progress has been very slow. They praise God that this summer a young man became a follower of Jesus and he and his mother have become a regular part of their gathering times. Please pray for each of these families as they continue to work to see the kingdom extended throughout the people of Gori.
After a great afternoon of prayer and fellowship, Niko and Soso took us to eat Shwarma. It is basically a middle eastern burrito. It was excellent. Then they drove us to a historic site called Uplistsikhe (pronounced oop-list-seek-ay). It is a massive boulder outcropping on the side of a hill next to a river. It has a cave city carved into the boulders. The informative boards said that there is evidence of settlement in these caves going as far as 1000 BC. It was amazing to walk through the site and imagine people living in this place so long ago.
After driving back to Tbilisi we had a wonderful dinner with David & Kristi Chan along with Eliza and Andrew. It was an incredible day. We ended up going to bed at around 10pm and were blessed to get a good night’s sleep.