Today we got together with a few people from our church and had a picnic at the river. Not everyone could make it, but those who did had a great time of fellowship. Fortunately, we got to the river early and staked out a good spot. Of course we had to pick up all the trash first, but we came prepared with trash bags. We packed out all of our trash and the trash we collected before we left. We all hoped that people would take notice and possibly follow our example. I'm working on some Ukrainian anti-litter posters with Nastia and Maria. We're thinking about putting them up in a few areas along the river and seeing what happens. We have a few ideas, but I'd love to hear if anyone else has any so feel free to comment. I'll post more about that project later.
Once we got settled into our picnic spot, the men set to work making fires for the shashlyk while the women sang worship songs. It wasn't long before the area we were in was filled with lots of people drinking and listening to loud music. It was interesting to see people notice that our group was a little different than the rest. Some people looked at us a little funny, but a few joined us for a game of frisbee and asked what church we were from.
Maria tossing the giant frisbee
Joshua and Maxime watching over the shashlyk
Our next door neighbor, Olya, couldn't walk all the way to where we met so we were happy to be able to bring her back some food from the picnic. Maria's mother, Vala, was worried that we wouldn't have enough food, but I think we had more leftover than we actually ate. I'm pretty sure the fear of running out of food is a universal fear among Ukrainians. Olya makes sure we are always well stocked with food so it was nice to bless her as she has done for us so many times before.
Kristina and Fedir
Maria, Edna, and Nastia
The necklace that Fedir made for Edna
If all we did today was to have fun, fellowship together, glorify God, and let our light shine a little bit, then I'd say it was a huge success. We're looking forward to doing it again sometime and so are all the children that kept asking their parents when the next church picnic will be.
In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven. -Matthew 5:16
Отак ваше світло нехай світить перед людьми, щоб вони бачили ваші добрі діла, та прославляли Отця вашого, що на небі. -Матвія 5:16