Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Clear Vision

I lift up my eyes to the mountains where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.
Psalm 121:1-2

Not to long ago on a trip to Elbasan, Albania we encountered a bad storm. Normally this isn't too big of a problem but that day it was. As Arian was driving the car through the storm, the windshield wipers broke. That is when you realize the true value of a part of the car that you don't use daily. Looking through the rain filled window was quite blurry and very difficult to see. What a difference it makes when your vision is clear! I think this is true in our Christian walk as well. We allow things of life to blur our vision. We really need to stop and focus on our Lord Jesus Christ! This year I want to take more time looking to him and less time focusing on problems that this life brings! 

This past year has been very difficult for us but we are looking forward to the blessings that God is going to provide in 2018. 
Mac Preaching in Kavaje
Right before we were ready to come home for furlough we lost Shpresa, Romi, and Juli on our staff. We were amazed that several people stepped up in the church and also Mac and Diane McClintock were able to come to Albania for a couple weeks as we were serving in America. We appreciate all of this extra help while we were visiting churches. 
October 2- December 6 we had a roller coaster ride visiting churches! We covered 4 states and 8 churches in 8 weeks! We were so grateful to be with each church sharing with them all. We felt the outpouring of encouragement and prayers. Thank you McDonough Christan Church, Hickory Valley Christian Church, First Christian Dalton, First Christian Keswick, Crosspoint Christian church, Colonial Heights Church of Christ, Horsepasture Christian Church,  and Live Oak Church of Christ. We are also very thankful for all of you who invited us to spend time with you in your home, for a meal, or a coffee!
Another praise is that Arian's parents are doing better. They spent time in Athens, Greece with Arian's sister Linda while we were in the states. We pray for continued good health for them in 2018!

Since we have been home we have hit the ground running getting ready for Christmas!  We were blessed by Mission without borders again with food boxes for everyone in the church. We have been giving those out as well as Christmas boxes from Team Hope in Holland for the kids. We were also able to have a lunch together with the ladies of the Women's Bible study in Durres. 

On Christmas Eve we combined the churches from Durres, Kavaje and Mondi Gjoni's church in Elbasan and had a great church and fellowship time with over 50 people! There wasn't much room but we had a wonderful time. Thank you so much Mondi for bringing your church all the way from Elbasan. We hope to cooperate more with Mondi and the church in Elbasan.

On Wednesday before Christmas Arian visited the old home and gave them all thick socks for Christmas. They are always happy when we remember them even if it's only a pair of socks. 

Arian and I went to Kavaje for the day of home visits and to the old home as well. On the way to the old home we kept seeing lots of police. We wondered what was going on. During our visit to the old home came the Albanian president Ilir Meta. We were able to see him. They didn't let us stay for long but we were able to visit some ladies there. We are sad to say that
one of our favorite old home residents died last week Nene Bedria. I (Stefanie) was very sad that I didn't get to see her before she died. She had been very sick and Arian had spent some time with her the week before. We are glad she isn't sick anymore and hope to meet her in Heaven! 

We need your prayers! Please commit to praying for us in 2018! 
Prayer needs: 
*Pray that in 2018 the ministry will grow and lives will be changed. Albanian people act like they don't need God, so for God to change their hearts. 
*Pray for us to get some help. We are seeking long term, short term, interns and small groups to come and help us.
*Pray for David. He has been sick for over a year and needs to have his tonsils and adenoids removed. Even though that is a simple procedure it isn't so simple here in Albania. 

Thank you for all your prayers and support! We appreciate you and thank God for you all! 

Serving in His name,
Arian & Stefanie Kosta
Stateside address: 148 Wolfe St. 
Cohutta, Ga 30710

Albanian Address: L3 Rr Egnatia AP:1043 
Durres, Albania

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