Latvia Trip April 10–13, 2010
In 2009 the Derby CR leadership began having prayer meetings every other month on a Saturday morning. We had much to pray about including the work of CR in our prisons and our desire to see this ministry spread throughout Britain and the rest of Europe. Some time ago the Lord gave us a prophetic word about lengthening the tent pegs and expanding the ministry to the left and to the right. We see the left as Ireland and the right as Europe as you look at the map. This was followed in the summer of 2009 by a word from the Lord about being more strategic, more deliberate, more proactive, rather than seeing what turned up.
We had one of these prayer meetings early in December of 2009 and during that time we began to pray about reaching out to Europe. The Lord heard our prayers and we received a prophetic word that it was time to GO. We had a board on which we were jotting down any scriptures or prophetic things and during this time the Lord gave me the single word ‘Latvia’. I was not sure if that was the name of a country but I wrote it on the board to show the Lord that I had heard it.
A few weeks later I was checking the statistics about the usage of this web site and noticed that Latvia was one of the countries which had visited our site. I remembered the prayer meeting and got excited. I got even more excited as I began to explore the Internet to find out about this country and I discovered that the air fare could be £700+ but that Ryanair fly from East Midlands (20 minutes away) direct to Riga, the capital of Latvia for less than £100, less than £50 if you book far enough in advance.
A few weeks later, in the quiet period between Christmas and the New Year, I was browsing the Internet again and wondered whether there was any existing CR work in Latvia so I entered “Celebrate Recovery, Latvia” into Google and BINGO! An american missionary society working in Latvia had hosted the first ever CR conference in November, on my birthday! Ok Lord, it’s coming through loud and clear now. I sent an email and received a very gracious reply together with an invite to come for a short visit. The consequence of all this is that Tony Turner, our UK director and I visited Latvia from April 10 – 13, 2010.
Wherever we went in Latvia people opened their doors to us, especially the missionary family who have started a CR group working with men in a place called Ergli. Dan comes from Oregon, USA and Katie from Croydon, UK and they met in Latvia!
We stayed with them and it was wonderful. We visited an Alcoholics Anonymous group who wanted to know what difference it makes having Jesus as your higher power. We ministered twice on Sunday in different churches and shared about this wonderful Jesus and the way that He is using Celebrate Recovery to set the captives free. Finally we met with the leaders and discussed how we could help to carry this CR ministry forward in Latvia, quite a full itinerary for 2 and a half days! All this was organised by Dan and Katie and they drove us everywhere and put people out of their beds to accommodate us so a big THANK YOU to them.
Report by Joe Walters