You know what’s missing in the global dialogue these days? Hope.
Why Go To Ukraine?
The question that keeps coming up about my trip to Ukraine is, “Why are you going? What do you hope to accomplish?”
In addition to the opportunity to connect with pastors in Bible Colleges and Conferences, humanitarian work, and hosting McJoyful parties for 3,000 displaced kids, the idea that simply being there in person would be encouraging to people intrigued me.
For a Canadian, and a senior at that, to leave the relative safety of our little St Albert neighbourhood to be with people at war, seems to carry significance. I imagine to some degree it’s like showing up at a funeral on a busy weekday. Just being there says it all to the grieving family. There’s a lot of grief in Ukraine.
The war appears to have hit a stalemate. The frontlines are compared to WWI trench warfare. It’s a gut-wrenching grind. 10s of thousands of Ukrainians have been killed already and Russia is positioning itself for a protracted invasion. A shadow of darkness is once again creeping over the country. Cracks in unity are beginning to appear.
So maybe a couple of Canadians could be a part of the light that pushes back the darkness, if only for a few moments. That being said, I know our lives will be the beneficiaries of this experience. The courageous spirit of Ukrainians and the servant attitude of the church is contagious. Report after report from Ukraine carries news that revival is spreading across Ukraine. There is hope. We know how the story ends. Love wins. Faith wins. Hope wins.
Carey Nieuwhof says, “Christian hope isn’t a pie-in-the-sky that floats above reality. It’s as gritty as the incarnation, the crucifixion, and the resurrection of the dead. Which means our lives need to get into the grit of addictions, conflict, brokenness and the utter fragility of life and fight for hope.”
As Bruce Cockburn once said, you need to kick at the darkness till it bleeds daylight.
Hope that goes into the darkest places and cracks open a thin wedge of light that eventually floods the room is exactly what is needed in Ukraine and Canada.
No doubt in Ukraine that I’ll share the story of Jocelyn’s hope from the words, “You’re going to be OK.” A story of hope can spark hope.
I leave Edmonton on November 28th and will be in Lviv, Ukraine (on the western side) sometime around November 30th.
If you haven’t already, please donate to McJoyful parties at Loads of Love. Thank you for your generosity. Sharing this post can help others learn about what is happening in Ukraine.
More Stories From Ukraine
Going to Ukraine – departure day is November 28th. How you can help.
Loads of Love: Ed Dickson – McJoyful parties for kids
All The Precious Children Of The World
A Miracle For Natasha
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