“If sinners be damned, at least let them leap to hell over our bodies. If they perish, let them perish with our arms over their knees. Let no one go unwarned.”-  Charles Spurgeon

These words have paraded across my screen saver for months. They, along with the message of 9/11 can not be forgotten. That Tuesday night at prayer meeting, God had told us that He had a fire to His Church just as surely as the WTC was ablaze. Then He prompted me to ‘own this’ as one responsible. Though the Church didn’t do it we have the ability to stop more of what it represents from happening again.

In the same way the fertile spiritual fields of Russia are being threatened. England learned that when their churches didn’t help foreign missions, their homeland churches dried up. Having been involved in short term missions for years, I am aware of our responsibility to be a blessing to the Church around the world. When there is a threat, when there is a great need around the world – America has responded. The Church in America is still blessed because they too have responded.

Today there exists a threat in Russia. Few churches are being built, but one I know of is continually on the edge of the blessings of faith. The only place faith exists is on the edge.

That is where Rev. Sokolov’s Church in Klin today, and the edge is defined as a governmental and an Orthodox threat.

For most Americans it would be a financial victory to be broke. But most are worse than broke, they are in debt. In Russia this is extremely dangerous. Can you imagine coming home one day and your house, your car and your family are gone? In Russia that can happen with no warning – no notice from the courts. If you owe something – you can lose it. That already happened to many churches in that part of the world! We can’t fathom that if church down the street doesn’t like our church, they could appeal to the courts without our knowledge and suddenly we would only have a street ministry.

Right now the average American credit card debt is around $8,000. That means that in Klin Pastor Sokolov could lose his church for the average debt of about 2 Americans!

What I’m asking is that you would help ‘own this’ challenge of being on the edge of the blessings of faith. Here is a proven ministry that will let no one go unprayed for or unwarned. Maybe you could imagine the literal, physical stress this puts upon a person, but Pastor Anatoliy has the same commitment our President made about terrorism. “I will not give up, give in or relent until this challenge is won”.

A lady in our church recently had cancer, however she was greatly encouraged when someone said, “But we are not defeated, are we?” When we realize that one Christian’s battle is all ours then our united stand will defeat the Enemy. Won’t you contact Pastor Sokolov with support? We almost over the top. The victory is in sight.

Terry Hartikka, Pastor

Cornerstone Family Church

Virginia, MA

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