Journey to Romania. Part 8: Head of the Family
JeJe asked me for the checkbook and control of the finances…a very brave man was he! I was so upset! We had both recently listened to a couple of good sermons on financial responsibility by Charles Stanley and Andy Stanley. JeJe had developed a plan of action and it started with taking the leadership of our home back into his authority. It meant he would be calling the shots with the finances; decisions would be discussed but he would be making the final call on them. I fought him so badly on this…to the point where he left the house to go be alone with God and allow God to deal with me. He did. Was I a hearer of the Word only and not a do-er? Did I really want to fight and disobey God by disobeying JeJe?
JeJe developed a budget and we stuck to it, tough as it was. Within nine to twelve months bills were paid off and God was blessing our finances. Two years earlier the LORD had resolved the situation with our pastor in Romania by taking him out of ministry for good. He was found guilty of many things, some much worse than I previously mentioned. God had used us in that situation with the supporting U.S. church and we found Romania would never leave our hearts.
Someone asked us, “Do you guys ever think about moving back to Romania?” We both quickly responded with an emphatic “NO!” The very next day that would all change…
I dropped the children off at school early that June morning. I was off to do my list of errands when the LORD clearly spoke to my heart, “I need you to go home. I want to talk to you.” I had such a sense of “urgency,” and I began to shake uncontrollably. I went into our apartment, sat down alone with God and began to weep. He spoke clearly to my heart that He wanted us to go back to Romania. I was both excited and scared all at once. I stayed awhile silently weeping, then texted JeJe at work to tell him what the LORD had spoken to me. A few minutes passed before he responded. “I think you may be right.” He came home shortly after and we prayed together. We picked up the children from school and told them what we were praying about. Both were excited. We couldn’t believe it. This had to be God because neither one wanted to ever go back to Romania after a family vacation there in 2006.
A couple of weeks later doubt and fear entered in. What about my children’s futures? What city did You want us to live in? The old one, filled with hurtful memories? Many people were angry with the sin and deception of the American pastor and the church was no longer together. One hundred twenty people were all scattered. Thoughts of doubt and fear continued…What about this?…What about that?
These thoughts haunted me until early September when Pastor Bob preached a powerful message from Acts about how Paul was called first to preach to his people. JeJe was so excited about our new calling; he shared his excitement as we prepared lunch at home and asked me, “Aren’t you excited? “NO,” I replied. A look of shock and disappointment crossed his face. I continued, “But I know He wants us to go. I heard His voice…clearly…and I am going to obey His call; but I am asking Him to help me be excited about it.”
We prayed together. The following Thursday I began attending the Women’s Bible Study at CCEA. I didn’t know anyone in my group…I had asked God to “put me where You want me.” They said it was time for prayer requests and I thought we would just write them on a piece of paper and be done. Oh, no! The leaders wanted us to go around the table and share our requests. My heart was so heavy, when they got to me, it broke. Every lady immediately got up from her chair to lay hands on me and pray. What a blessing.
The next morning I drove to CC Costa Mesa to begin the Women’s study there. I had been asked to help my friend with the Romanian Language Group. I knew God had something special just for me because we were going to be studying Ezra, Nehemiah and Esther. I knew God was preparing me to return to Romania.
I sobbed during the entire drive there. As I was pouring my heart out to the LORD a Casting Crowns song played on my radio. “…Such a tiny offering, compared to Calvary; nevertheless, we lay it at Your feet…” I parked, took some deep breaths, fixed my face and went into the main Sanctuary for the opening lesson. Cheryl Brodersen came out and taught on Jeremiah 29:11 and how God had given that verse to her for her oldest daughter when they first moved to England to be missionaries. Everything she said went straight to my heart and I cried in thanksgiving to the LORD. That verse was no longer just on a coffee cup or note pad. It was MINE! His plans were perfect for me and my family; they were for a hope and future. That’s MY PROMISE KEEPERS PROMISE !!!
by Coleen JeJeran, Missionary to Romania