On March 22, 2007 I shared with you about a student named Sasha. Please click here to read the post.
Sasha graduated from TCIS last spring. I saw Sasha in early August of this school year and talked with him briefly. He informed me that he had been home most of the summer with his parents in Russia and just before he left to come to South Korea (en-route to the USA to go to university), his hometown was rocked with an earthquake that exceeded 7.0 on the Richter scale. The epicenter of the quake was in the ocean, just off the shore of his hometown city. Because the quake was so close to land it didn't cause a tidal wave but it did do a lot of damage to the city and specifically to his parents' home and storefront business. Sasha helped his parents begin to piece things back together following the quake and then left to plug into his first year of university in the USA.
In our brief discussion in August Sasha shared with me that he was growing in his faith in God and that he was very nervous about going to university--especially with the thought of his parents struggling to rebuild their lives back home. I prayed with Sasha in my office--we prayed for his parents, for his upcoming adventure of university and for his journey with Jesus. Sasha flew out for the USA on the next day.
In the city in the USA that Sasha is attending university lives an individual who taught here at TCIS and knows Sasha. This person has been keeping tabs on Sasha and helping him out in his transition to university life. The former TCIS teacher sent me the following email regarding Sasha:
Date: Monday, September 10 2007 11:40 PM
Just a note to catch you up on Sasha. You wouldn't believe him, he looks and acts great, and says that he doesn't have depressive feelings now. He has found a niche at University (which is a liberal arts Bible College). In fact he carries his Bible around to the various chapels, etc. He has made a group of friends quickly, has joined the soccer team (on which he says that he sucks, but enjoys it), auditioned and was selected as bass guitarist for college choir, and has volunteered at a local church to play in the praise team for his service hours……….. He tells me that these are exactly the music classes he needed, and the private lesson guitar teacher is helping him with a unique style combining his own developed technique with classical. He is very excited about that, and his teacher is in his early 30s and is quite well known for his expertise in the region…………….. Sasha's group of close friends includes Nathan who is Filipino, Bradley who is African American from Detroit and Moses who is Laotian. They are all music majors and have nearly all of their classes together.
Wow, there you have it. There is some good going on this world--despite what the newspaper headlines tell us. God is good and He is working in the lives of people.
What a miracle it is to hear how God has met Sasha at the point of his need--he is learning and growing in his musical talent (and using it for God) and he is making friends from all over the world.
When I think about Sasha it warms my heart and I have to lift up praise to the Lord. As the Apostle Paul was reflecting on his blessed friends in Philippi he wrote:
"I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." --Philippians 1
Is it any different today? We must remember one another with warm hearts and fervent prayers. We must find our hope, faith and confidence in God, for He is the one who began the good work in all of us by His grace. Because of Jesus we can confidently move into each day (regardless of the headlines) knowing that He is with us and that He will always be with us!
Take heart! "For God so loved the world".....that is you, me ....and Sasha.