Thursfield Travels – April 2017

Dear friends and partners

Thank you so much for your prayers and support; I have learned even more deeply the important part you play in the work we are doing.  It is a week now since I have been back from Bangladesh and the Middle East, and what a trip it was!

Here are some of the lows and highs of the trip:

BANGLADESH

Lows

  • Arrived in Bangladesh, only to find that there had been terrorist attacks in the town I was supposed to visit the next day! It was decided that it was too dangerous to go, so four days of the trip had to be completely changed!
  • Arrived on the Saturday, on the Monday, Alfred’s (the person who organised my programme and was looking after me) father in law had an heart attack, was rushed into hospital, three days later he died and was taken back to his village for burial, the burial rites normally take three days. I never saw him till the following Sunday!
  • Terrorist attacks took place nearly every day, that meant I was not allowed out of the hotel on my own, so many hours were spent in my room on my own!

Highs

  • Having time to spend with the children in the orphanage that World In Need sponsors and hearing them shout ‘granddad’ every time I arrived. It was a joy to spend time playing, laughing and eating with them.
  • Having three days with seven young people. Having time to talk, teach and encourage them.  This was arranged at short notice and so I had to change and adapt what I was going to do, rapidly!  Seeing them begin to understand who they really are in Christ was wonderful. Praying for two of the girls and then hearing that both had significant dream that night.
  • Having three days of training with the leaders of the Churches that Alfred works with. Many had travelled overnight three hundred miles to be with us.  It was good, over the three days, to see them open up and begin to share the problems and difficulties that they face.

MIDDLE EAST

Lows

  • Culture shock, going from one of the poorest countries on earth to one of the richest was a real challenge.
  • Not having time to spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically adjust from the very difficult and tense situation in Bangladesh to the relative peace of the Middle East.
  • Leaving behind brothers and sisters, who are now friends, for whom everyday is a struggle.

Highs

  • The peace of the home where I stayed. After the hustle, noise and traffic of Dhaka it was a joy to sit in the quiet and peace.
  • Spending time with friends from the countries I have visited over the years and making new ones. Hearing their stories and praying with them.
  • Learning more of Islam and practically exploring how we can make relationships with those who are seeking to know more.

I am now, slowly (I must be getting old!) getting my feet back on the ground and beginning to think through all the experiences I have had and what I can learn through them.

We have a few weeks at home now to recuperate and get on with all those jobs I have been meaning to do!  Now where is that screw driver…

God bless you and thanks again for partnering with us.

Robert