The First Week
I can tell I'm in Germany because the other day, the smell of sausage and sauerkraut actually came drifting through the window. The first week here in Wiesbaden has been crazy, exciting, different, tiring, surprising and fun. So far, we have been getting oriented with different things: the church, the people, the language, the transportation. While adjusting to jet lag, we have explored the city and met people. It has been great to learn about what will be our home for the next several weeks.
I am incredibly thankful for the people I get to work alongside this summer. My teammate is delightful and fun, our host family is generous and kind, our supervisor is awesome and helpful, and our church family is friendly and welcoming. I'm not sure how it is possible that they are all kind, funny and desire to serve Jesus, but they are a blessing. They build up the body of Christ and I am grateful to do ministry with them. God is good to me.
The goals here are the same as they are anywhere: be intentional, build relationships and share Christ with people. For the followers of Jesus, knowing God and making Him known are the things we are called to, regardless of the place we are in. In Germany about 0.1% of the population is estimated to have a relationship with Jesus. It is staggering to think that so many people do not know the hope and joy, which are products of knowing Christ. Everyone we meet is in need of a Savior to be righteous before God; everyone we meet is loved and cared for by Jesus.
More specifically, our goal here is to meet students at the University of Mainz, make friends, have conversations and point students toward Him. We take buses and trains to be at the university several times a week. By trying different means of meeting people, we hope to connect them with Immanuel Baptist Church, where they will be shepherded and cared for after our team leaves here.
We are also here to serve the church. As its interns, we pray that the church will become more missionally-minded, intentionally living in a way that will allow them to share Jesus with those around them. We have met lots of the members of the congregation and are excited for those friendships.
So far, we have met several people on university campus. We met several students in a jazz band who invited us to a party last week. We met Patricia, a waitress in the cafe on campus. We met Carolin, a Christian who goes to the university. We have met more students and shared the Gospel with them. These connections, among others, are ones we hope to continue for the weeks to come. We have organized events like a Movie Night and a Pizza Party in order to gather students and build friendships.
Ways to Pray
- Pray these outreach events are successful and well-attended. We hope that by making friends, we can have meaningful conversations and share the Gospel.
- Pray for us to make connections at the university. Sometimes it is difficult to go out on campus and start up conversations, so pray that God would lead us and give us wisdom and boldness.
- Pray for Immanuel Baptist Church. As our supervisor has only been the pastor since January 2015, pray that the congregation would continue to grow in their unity and knowledge of God, and pray for the three members who were baptized on Sunday, that they would continue to grow!
- Pray for opportunities to share the Gospel. Whether we are sowing seeds, watering or reaping a harvest, we want to be faithful and obedient to what God will call us to do.
Kasey Chinn, UT Dallas student, is serving in Wiesbaden, Germany through Go Now Missions this summer.