Saturday, November 7, 2009
I am thrilled to announce that we will be doing the Country of Ukraine for the month of November. As many of you know we have 2 precious people from Cornerstone that are serving in this country. Tim and Marsha followed after the Lord when He lead them there April of 2008. This has been truly an adventure for them. I have been blessed to be in Ukraine of 2 different occasions doing 2 totally different types of trips. The first was a medical mission and the second was for a women's conference. It is powerful and what a blessing to share the love of the Lord with those of the Ukraine. I wrote Marsha and ask her some questions. Very basic questions. Questions that we as women, Mom's, wives, and Grandma's may wonder about the women of the Ukraine. Things that in our daily life we go about and take for granted. Even though I have been there, when I read through the answers to her questions, I am once again humbled and broken for these precious women. As the Lord leads you today and as you go through out your day today, think about these women. Pray for them. Pray for Marsha as she reaches out with Christ love to them. Pray for Tim as he reaches out to the men of Ukraine and sets an example of being a Godly Christian business man. Below are the questions and the answers. Pray with me................
Average Income- In the village $300 per month, in the city of Kiev $700 per month
When do they typically get married? Age 19 or 20 - very young
Working women-what type of work? Majority would be service jobs, many are teachers - which is the most respected occupation in the country. Many jobs include "moral challenging" expectations
Do most go to college? College is like a technical school. The more respected thing is University which only a select number are able to attend. During the Soviet era they went to University free (except for Christians who were not allowed to attend). Today an education is bought. Even today, when students receive good grades, they usually have to "pay" to have them recorded and posted for graduation. Most do not attend University.
Stay at home mom's? The government pays mothers to stay home for the first 2 years of children's lives. It's not much money - I think around $1,200 per year. An employer is required by law to give them their job after the 2 years. If they get pregnant during the 2 years, the time starts again at the birth of the 2nd child. I don't know how much this is done in the villages.
Percentage of Christians? They will call themselves a Christian nation - meaning Orthodox. There are about 17% Evangelicals in the country, with the highest percentage being in Kiev, Odessa, Vinnytsa, Rivne and Lviv. There are many, many villages with no evangelical presence at all.
Daily life for the average woman in Ukraine- Get up (not too early), fix breakfast, go to the market, fix lunch, clean or wash, fix dinner. If they work, they go to work and cook before and after, much like Americans.
What are their "hobbies"? Only those with money have hobbies. quilting is showing up in 4 areas of the Country. They have just added scrapbooking to the quilting shop but it isn't going over well - no one has the money. Most women don't have hobbies because they don't have time to have one.
How they care for their children- stay at home, daycare, stay with grandparents? As already mentioned, they stay home for the first 2 years, then it changes. In the city, they may stay with Grandma or go to Kindergarten (daycare). In the village, almost all of them stay with grandma. They come to conferences and meetings with the little ones.
What do they do for entertainment? They have television in most places - but it is not widely watched. They love music and almost every family has a piano. We hear music coming from our neighbors all the time. They entertain themselves with conversation and vodka!
How can we in the US be praying for them? That God would move their hearts to search for Him. That hard hearts would be broken so they might accept His love.
How can we be praying for you? That we would be faithful to walk in His ways - regardless of what that means or requires day to day.
In Him Only,