Monday, February 24, 2014

To Russia With Love

God taught me about life, love, and people as I walked the streets of Russia this past January. I learned my perception of this mysterious land was all wrong.

A little girl during the cold war, I grew up in a world of air raid drills. Practicing quick descents under the protection of my desk was a way of elementary school life. Fear of a Russian attack was real. The Russians are coming and they will hurt us were thoughts ingrained in my childhood memory.

During one air raid drill, I became bored standing in the hall with my hands on top of my head. Realizing my tiny arms would not protect my body from attack, I noticed the fire extinguisher. If the Russians come, I'll attack them with that hard red cylinder. Just in case, I practiced squeezing the trigger to see what would happen. What happened was white foam shot into the hallway soaking me and many others. There was not a Russian in sight. I was the danger in the hallway that day. In trouble, I was escorted to the principal's office. A silly story, but when I was invited to speak in Russia, I remembered the fire extinguisher.

There were no imaginary fires or need for protection during my visit to Russia, but there were:

Breathtaking buildings:


Romantic streets brimming with young lovers and mothers strolling their babies:


Precious Russian children:


Sweet babies, loving mothers, and gushing grandmas:


New friends sharing with strangers their love, hospitality, Russian cakes,  


tea and cookies!


People eager to grow in their knowledge of English and in their relationships. 
People with names like Nikita


and Icicle.


Beautiful, tall Russians who love God and want to love Him more.


Willing servants like Nadia eager to translate Truth


Newspapers front page the evil in every country. But if you visit the people who aren't making news you'll find they are beautiful, loving, helpful, hospitable, patient, and kind. I met them in Russia. I pray Russians meet them when they visit America. 

Russia splashed serenity in my life with peace I never dreamed when I was young trying to run from the Russians. Today I thank God for my new Russian friends,

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2 comments:

talker445 said...

Your trip sounds wonderful. I enjoyed seeing your updates and how God used you there.

Elaine W. Miller said...

Stay tuned. I'll be writing more in the days ahead. So exciting to see God at work in Russia.

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