Sunday, March 1, 2015

Bread for the Journey

We are in the middle of a new series on Sundays called "Movement". As we launched into this series our pastor encouraged us with this statement: "The book of Acts tells the story of a group of first-century, rag-tag followers of the Risen Christ who became the movement that would change the world; it’s God’s movement because He is a God on the move, and He invites us to get on the move with Him." As a follower of Jesus "I am an integral part of the most powerful, life-changing movement in the history of the world."
It's an encouraging exercise to look back over your life and the life of your ancestors to see how God has led and moved you to where you are today.
 My father's family
My mother with her brother and younger sister in Iran.

 For me part of my story is God moving both sets of my grandparents to flee Russia on foot with their children to Iran in the early 1930's. Both sets of grandparents settled near Tehran where my parents later met and got married. God moved my father with the desire to come to the United States. One of the things that influenced this desire was how my father was treated while working in an U.S. Army base kitchen in Iran. The soldiers were kind to my father and let him take food home to his family because they knew my father's family was struggling.
My parents with my oldest sister shortly after arriving to Los Angeles.

 My parents filed the proper paper work and were granted permission to immigrate to the U.S.A. With my oldest sister they traveled to the U.S.A. settling in Los Angeles shortly after World War II ended. In 1963 my father went to hear Billy Graham at the Los Angeles Coliseum and my father was born again. My father's decision to follow Jesus turned my family's world upside down in the right way. That same year I accepted Christ and my new life in the greatest movement of all time began. We won't know the whole story on how our own lives impact God's movement till we see Him face to face but we can see part of the story now and be encouraged to carry on and follow Him where he leads us. He doesn't call us and then leave us alone. He has given us his Spirit, He intercedes for us, He gives us strength. He multiplies the little that we have when we are willing to step out in faith with Him. What an amazing movement to be a part of! You, too, can be a part of this movement. Ask God to reveal Himself to you, to show you the way.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. John 3:16-17   

Jesus said to them, I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6
  

19 comments:

  1. Hello Ellen ! I am not a Christian (I belong to the older part of the Faith) but I was deeply moved by your family's story and those beautiful pictures. You expressed very well the way that it is G-d who moves us along. All the best ! x

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wonderful story Ellen - what a legacy you and your family have because of your father's faith!!! Those pictures are so precious.

    ReplyDelete
  3. What a beautiful story Ellen, And I love the old photographs. My parents came from Russia and Poland, made it through the war and ended up in Canada. Their story is full of hardship, but they made a great life for their children here. God bless!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Its so good for us to remember the love of God in our lives and our story can lift the heads of others to the God we know. I love to read of your family history, how God moved in your parents lives before they even knew Him. I am writing a book for our girls so that they remember what God has done for them through His story in my life. He has changed the direction of our family for generations to come. Maybe future family members not yet born will be able to read of it and know what love the Father has for them, how He has been at work for them, before they were even born. Precious is His story of love in our lives, no matter how messy we may think life can get.....at the foundation, there is Love and the promises that Love contains for each of us. We shine His light when we share...thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you for sharing your story, Ellen. Our parents' and grandparents' journey greatly impacts each of us. I often think back to the faith and courage demonstrated by my grandparents as they made the decision to leave family and all that was familiar in Russia to begin again in a strange land with language and customs foreign to them. They suffered much poverty and many hard times but they always said "God was faithful". I have much to learn from their example.

    ReplyDelete
  6. What a beautiful testimony. As the Word states "The steps of a righteous man are ordered by the Lord".

    ReplyDelete
  7. What a beautiful testimony. As the Word states "The steps of a righteous man are ordered by the Lord".

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank you Ellen for sharing such an integral part of your life. These are the stories that need to be publicized. As we look back over history and cling to the same promises that our parents and grandparents, we too know that we can have the strong faith.
    "Gott Kann"

    ReplyDelete
  9. LOVE your family's story, Ellen! Wow! Thank you for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  10. An amazing story! I love it all, but read the part about the US soldiers being kind aloud. What a beautiful post from start to finish.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Thank you for telling how God worked in your family. What an encouragement and good reminder that God is in control.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thanks for sharing this faith-building story!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Thank you for sharing your family story. As parents/grandparents, we need to be reminded of the promises of God on the impact we have on our children and our grandchildren.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Wonderful story...but I would love to see it all fleshed out and the entire story told...would make a wonderful book I bet.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Your family has surely been specially chosen by God to spread His word! Beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thank you for sharing. My grandmother was moved by Billy Graham as well. She and I found much to talk about when we talked about the scriptures. It was our common ground and I miss her for that part, especially since no one else in the family seems to feel the call. Lovely story of hard-won liberty. And the movement to keep that liberty goes on and on......

    ReplyDelete
  17. What a blessing to hear your story! Thank you

    ReplyDelete
  18. The pictures are really cool! I wish I had photos from my grandparents. It is just so interesting to look at these photos! They are really precious! Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete