I’ve heard about this Poland conference (basically my whole life), but this was the first opportunity I’ve had to actually be there. The conference is located in a small farm village nestled in the scenic Tatra Mountains near the Poland-Slovakia border. We stayed in steep-roofed wooden houses in which our host family cooked for us scrumptiously delightful (and reminiscent of Kansas) Polish food. The traditional village, back-set with mountain peaks, was coloured with brilliant flowers in window sills, prolific vegetable gardens bordered by wild berries, flocks of sheep nibbling on the green grass, barking dogs running past men taking their milk cows to pasture, and, best yet, lovely ducks and geese and chickens and turkeys all over. Life in the village was slow, friendly, and, ah, so relaxing and comfortable.
As wonderful as the experience in the village was, it was only the physical setting for the most glorious conference in which I was privileged to be able to serve. Over 740 saints from 27 countries gathered to enjoy a vision of God’s building as seen in the tabernacle. I personally was involved with helping with activities and wasn’t able to attend any of the morning meetings and only parts of the evening meetings. I coordinated with 14 others saints from Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States. It was eternal. While praying, enjoying the ministry, planning the day’s activities, creating games (sometimes at the last minute because of unforeseen circumstances), preparing materials for a project, scouting around the village to establish orienteering points, setting up obstacle courses in the forest, etc., we enjoyed a sweet blending and coordination that made long days and long nights entirely worthwhile and filled with thanksgiving to the Lord.
Instead of being assigned to a particular group of young people, I was able to interact with all the groups throughout the afternoons. My top joy was being able to witness groups of young people from sometimes up to five countries and languages coordinating and blending and working together. One of the few messages I actually attended was on the standing boards of the tabernacle (Exodus 26). Each of the boards was made of acacia wood overlaid with gold, but, significantly, there were many boards standing next to each other. Ephesians 2:21-22 was seen to be the reality and fulfillment of Exodus 26. In whom all the building, being fitted together, is growing into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in spirit. I was able to see what this actually looks like when I saw these young people work together and sing together and pray together and experience and enjoy the Lord together. It was wonderful to see the young people beginning to learn how to coordinate and practice the vital groups.
Oh, I wish I could bring you all to where we were so that you could experience this conference for yourselves. One special experience was on Friday. After the morning meeting, there was an opportunity for the young people to be baptised. Many young people were baptised, and the enemy clearly wasn’t happy about. A deluge (I mean a real deluge) poured on the village at the very moment that the young people were being transferred out of Satan’s kingdom into God’s kingdom. Afterward, the brothers in my house were eating lunch and a lightning strike caused the electricity to go out. The rains weren’t letting up, so we remained in the dining room and began to sing in English and Polish. Our host family (strictly Polish-speaking) came out with such big smiles and told us to keep singing. They were very happy, and we believe that they saw the testimony of Jesus in the singing of the brothers.
As the Apostle Paul stated in Hebrews 11, time will fail me if I tell of more. And as Philip (John 1:46) and the woman at the well (John 4:29) beckoned, come and see. I can only convey so much, but I hope I was able to indicate at least a little that the Lord is doing much to gain Europe. Whether here or there, we all can participate in what the Lord is doing through our prayer in one accord.
Sharing from the 2014 European Young People’s Conference in Poland by bro. N. O. (USA-born and now living in the UK, see his blog here) from his impression as a serving brother at this conference. Send us your enjoyment by email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to have it published here.