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September marks a major milestone in our ministry as I begin my 21st year teaching through Teaching Resources! 20 years ago, Jim came to Ukraine to teach the first class at Kiev Theological Seminary.  Since that time, Jim has taught an average of 4-7 classes every year in Ukraine. We have seen many graduates go out from the seminary.  Additionally, Jim has taught in many other countries, including Haiti, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Russia and Bulgaria. These years have been filled with great ministry, memories and an abundance of God’s grace!  Here are a few of his memories. Continue Reading »

Big Steps (July Update)

Big Steps … (July 2016 Update)

June has been a month of big steps for us in almost every area.  We made big steps in ministry, in our family and with our house.  Here’s a quick update about June and the next steps for us for July.

Big Steps in Ministry …

In May, I finished teaching my last class for this academic year.  But I still had papers and assignments to grade before I could officially call it “summer break.” In June, I received 2 sets of papers from nearly 40 students so I set to work grading and evaluating papers from the class. Almost all the papers are graded and I will be working on final grades for this class.  Hopefully before July, I will be finished for this summer!  Then I will be taking a little time each week to get my classes ready for September.  But mostly, I will be trying to get some work done on our house before the fall semester rolls around.

Thanks for praying for me as I taught at a church conference in Cherkassy, Ukraine. I taught on the theology and practice of prayer.  Dan Upchurch taught on church planting and outreach.  We had a great conference with this wonderful church in Cherkassy. Continue Reading »

Learning to Walk … (June 2016 Update)

May has been a month of “learning to walk” in so many ways. Nadia is learning to walk physically, and we are learning to walk spiritually.  And, with graduation in May, we had the joy of seeing our graduates “walk” and begin “walking out” their faith in their ministries! So we are all learning to walk! Continue Reading »

God at Work! (May 2016 Update)

I often get a kick whenever I see the sign “Men at Work.” That’s because, inevitably, there will be one guy working and 5-6 others standing around watching (usually giving advice too!).  I noticed the same here in Ukraine recently – one guy in a manhole and 5-6 others standing around watching him work!  I guess it’s universal!

But God is always at work bringing about His perfect plans in His perfect timing – whether we see Him or not!  This past month, we have been blessed to see many evidences of God at work in our lives and in the lives of many that we ministry to. Continue Reading »

He is Risen, Indeed! (April 2016 Update)

In Ukraine, Easter is still a month away (May 1) because Ukraine follows the Orthodox Easter.  But our friends and families in the US will be celebrating the Resurrection this Sunday! No event in human history compares to the resurrection of Jesus!  When you compare all the other major religions in the world, only Christianity has a resurrected founder.  Only Christianity has a living redeemer!  The resurrection is clearly the most unique event in all of human history!

But it is more than “unique.”  It is also the most significant event in history.  Because, without the resurrection, even the cross of Jesus is meaningless.  Why?  Because the resurrection verifies who Jesus is (Romans 1:4) and proves that He conquered both sin and death.  Let me explain.  When Jesus died on the cross, all our sins were placed on Him.  If He goes into the grave and does not rise from the dead, then He has not paid for our sins in full.  Because death is the penalty for sin.  And if our sins are not paid for in full, Jesus cannot rise from the death because there will still be sins on Him that He did not atone for.  But when he rises from the dead, it is proof that all our sins have been paid in full by the death of Jesus on the cross. And the resurrection proves they are all paid for!  This is why we celebrate the resurrection, not just once a year on Easter, but every Sunday – He is risen indeed! Continue Reading »

March: A Month of Opportunities (March 2016 Update)

As we move into March, we will be having one of our busiest months of the year.  I will be teaching 3 classes this month (I usually teach 1 each month).  So this March will be extra busy for me.  While I am still working on the papers from my February class in Lviv, I will also be preparing to teach 3 classes in March.  It will be a very busy month for me – I’m just hoping that I can find some time at the end of the month to watch some March Madness games J.  Additionally, we are facing some major decisions about our housing (see below) that could be a real blessing for us! Continue Reading »

“Go West, Young Man” (February 2016 Update)

Heading to Lviv …

Those were the words of Horace Greely encouraging young veterans of the American Civil War to go west to find a place where they can be useful.  Many did and it opened the westward expansion of the United States.  Well, I’m not a young man but I’m headed west again to teach in Lviv.  I am excited about the growth of the new seminary there and I am looking forward to teaching there again next week.

Be praying for me as I gather everything I need for the class, finish lecture preparations and try to 2016.02 Lviv class (1)get everything ready here at home so Katya and the kinds will have everything they need while I am gone.  I will be teaching Christology and Soteriology and I have not taught either for over 4 years, so I have some brushing up to do!  I’ll be traveling by train so I have about 5 hours to read and get ready for Monday morning’s class.  Thanks for praying for me as I teach!

Continue Reading »

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