Feature

Peace Amidst Life’s Trials

GCF in Action

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As I reflect upon Psalm 146:5–9, particularly about the Lord’s faithfulness, I am humbled yet encouraged by His work in my friend Lily. When I met her five years ago, I didn’t know how applicable these verses would be to her life.

We met through our cultural center, The Source, in Sarajevo. She attended one of our English classes for adults and her four-year-old daughter, Lucy, attended my Story Time class for preschoolers. I met with her weekly for English conversation practice at our home while our daughters played together. Naturally, a friendship began.

We invited Lily and Lucy to our daughter’s birthday party that summer. An elder from our church also came and spoke with my husband about how the church had been praying for some medical issues he was having. This conversation got Lily’s attention. She began asking the elder questions about prayer and our church. They spoke for an hour, and he encouraged her to visit the church.

After the party, Lily asked me if she and Lucy could attend with us. Of course, we were very happy to bring them.

Church Family

That fall, they began attending church weekly, and that winter she and I also began regularly studying the Bible together. Lily was excited to learn about God and to have a place where she could openly ask spiritual questions.

When I went on home assignment a year later, Lily began meeting with our coworker Kathy Eikost for Bible study and continued to attend church. However, she wrestled with who Jesus is and if she really was in need of a Savior. Sadly, that winter her husband, Leo, was diagnosed with cancer. He was hospitalized, and Lily faithfully cared for him.

When the doctors could no longer help Leo, they sent him home. A believer from the church stayed with them and helped care for Leo. She read the Bible to Leo and shared the gospel with him. Before his death, he surrendered his life to Jesus and became a believer.

Leo’s death was difficult for Lily and Lucy. Lily was now a widow with no family nearby and no job and raising a seven-year-old. However, she continued attending church and meeting for Bible study. The church community had become her family and support system.

Strength for Today

About nine months after her husband’s passing, Lily understood that she too needed Jesus as Savior and Lord of her life. The following summer she was baptized.

As the Lord has worked in Lily’s life over the past five years, He has given her peace, strength, and trust that He is in control and will take care of her and Lucy even in the trials of life in Bosnia. Lily shares her faith with her family members and greatly seeks to honor the Lord in her life and decisions.

Lucy, who is now nine years old, also seeks to follow the Lord and enjoys reading the Bible and learning about God. I am eager to see how God will continue to work in and through them as they put their hope and trust in the One who not only sustains them but also gives them strength, life, and peace.

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