What joy it was for Dan and I to minister to married couples in Bosnia Herzegovina. We came away assured of this:
Couples of all faiths want to make their marriages stronger.
I spoke on my book We All Married Idiots, available in Bosnian. The people who organized events throughout Bosnia Herzegovina were shocked at the response. Couples of all faiths filled the room, were attentive to my teaching, and to my sharing of how God healed our marriage. Afterwards, Dan joined me for a 15 minute Q & A that lasted well over an hour. These dear couples were hungry for hope and truth.
Afterwards, the lady above shared
"I see light in you."
I pray that light will shine through her as she dreams of becoming a marriage counselor.
The couple above are not married, but came together to learn more of marriage. Just like in the United States, the unmarried also seek marriage advice to help in choosing a life-long marriage partner.
One pastor in a local church had little faith that couples would attend the event in his church. He bought a few cakes for refreshments, happy he would have to eat them all. The couples came and more came and more came. Rows of chairs were added and then another row and another. Laughing, the Pastor thanked everyone for attending, but acknowledged he needed to go buy more cake.
Afterwards, the Pastor said
"This night is a turning point for Bosnian marriages.
Most Bosnians sweep their troubles under the rug.
For couples to come to a marriage seminar was evidence marriages wanted help.
Bosnian marriages turned a corner tonight."
In another town, I wondered how the evening would go as husbands and wives entered the hotel conference room.
The Bosnian husbands were like American husbands
attending a marriage seminar:
A bit apprehensive about what this women will tell them
and wondering whether my teaching will hurt their marriages and/or their manhood.
After all, no one likes to be told they are an idiot.
They sat with arms folded, looking straight ahead, not smiling.
After a few minutes I was blessed to see
husbands relax, smile, laugh,
unfold their arms and hold their wives.
It was a delight to meet these sweet ladies at another event for women in Mostar. They were very happy to receive their signed copies of the Bosnian translation of We All Married Idiots.
And the woman who did an amazing job of translating and designing a cover appropriate for the Bosnian culture. Thank you my talented new friend. Without your hard work, We All Married Idiots would not be before the eyes of Bosnian readers.
Our nearly two weeks in Bosnia Herzegovina began with a weekend retreat of church leaders from churches in this beautiful country. We traveled to Neum, a seaside resort, where Dan and I enjoyed two days of teaching, encouraging, and loving these dear people.
Many lives were touched and changed. I know mine was. Thank you for all who prayed.
Please keep praying for marriages in Bosnia Herzegovina,
that they won't just turn a corner,
but will walk down the path of eternal life in Heaven
and abundant life on earth.
I will share more about the specifics of our trip at a later date. Right now Dan and I are preparing for another marriage retreat here in the USA and then I'm away speaking for four days. Meanwhile, don't forget these dear ones. Splash serenity on their lives with your prayers.