UK: 0113 276 5060 USA: 423 239 9525
info@thesmilesfoundation.org

Luke at Dezna

News from Luke, July 2019

Hello everyone,
I’d like to start with sharing this verse, Matthew 19:14:
Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” This is just one example of Jesus explaining how important children are to Him. Of course, when He said this, he meant in the literal sense of allowing them to spend time with him in person because the disciples were stopping them from coming to Jesus.

Today, we can’t see Jesus in person as when he walked this earth, but we can absolutely come to Him in prayer and in our quiet times through reading His word. But do we encourage children to do that too?

I have no doubt that many of you reading this, do encourage your children in knowing Jesus, maybe at home with you or as part of their time at Church in Sunday school or Children’s groups.

In the UK we are blessed to have many opportunities and events that children can go to. For example, Spring Harvest which has a great children’s program and this can be on top of the amazing work done by many Children’s Pastor’s and leaders in churches across the UK. This not only teaches children about God’s love but encourages them to enter into a personal relationship with Him.

But what about the children and young people who don’t have these opportunities? Children who maybe live in an area with no active evangelical church or who can’t afford to travel to and stay at an event.

What can be done to help them?

Specifically, I am now thinking about children here in Romania. For example, children from poorer communities like Rapa who despite having a church in their village now are new in their faith and they certainly have not experienced events like a Bible camp, designed for them to have fun over a week away from home and hearing in more depth about the Lord’s love for them.

But this is exactly where the new Dezna Outreach facility comes in. As many of you know, this centre has been the focus of a lot of work over the past year. All of which is so that this summer Bible Camps can be run for hundreds of children that would not have the chance to experience a fun, God focused holiday!

In the bible verse Jesus says “and do not hinder them”. I would say that an indirect hinderance to children would be a lack of opportunity or opportunities that are not taken. We don’t try actively to stop them, but we might be missing opportunities that God is providing.

At Dezna, God has provided so much! Not just financial blessings but wonderful volunteers who work immensely hard to prepare the camp accommodation and the grounds. Everyone at Smiles is so thankful to Him and the people who gave their time and energy to this.

But this is just the beginning! There is so much potential for children and young people to come and experience God in Dezna through the camp program and we must take this opportunity, making the most of it as possible.

Not just with helping children in Romania to attend camp but also by inviting groups from the UK and America too. Perhaps you can help with this?

Maybe a children’s or youth group from your church would enjoy a Bible camp experience. There are many other groups as well, please pray about this and seriously consider who you know that would benefit from a visit to Dezna. Let’s make the most of the opportunities that God gives us all.

I would love to welcome you to Dezna for a Bible Camp or to Cihei for a Mission trip. Why not see what God has in His plan for you, your children’s or youth group or your church? There will be blessings and challenges and plenty of both!

But also, please lift up the staff here who will be running the camps. Adi and Ioana will oversee them and I know they have great hearts for helping children and young people learn about God’s love for them and have put together a fun filled program of games and activities for the camps. Please pray for strength, energy and patience as they get started on this new project.

Also, please continue to lift up this entire project in your prayers, that it will be a safe place that will enable and inspire children and young people into a deeper relationship with the Lord!

Finally, if you would like to learn more about the Dezna camps then please don’t hesitate to contact me via my email address:
luke.wathen@thesmilesfoundation.org

I am happy to answer any questions and even arrange meetings or presentations in person for a later date so that you, your family and, or your church, can have all the information you need.
Thank you all and may God bless you,

Luke Wathen
UK Development Ambassador

Email Newsletters with VerticalResponse