It was good to get back to our country from all our travels in Asia, back to the familiar. But even there we were faced with uncertainty. We were not sure where it was that God was leading us to settle.
I’d been praying throughout the whole six years we’d been in the States for God to prepare things in the city He wanted us go to. This included asking for His opening the hearts of the people, bringing us into contact with those who would believe, providing us a place to live, good neighbors and other workers to team up with. We believed God had been doing just that, and now we just needed to know what that city was!
One offer came our way from a team working in the biblical city of Iconium, the city Paul had been chased out of. This is a very conservative Is.lamic city and our team had been working there for several years without any discernible results. The three couples on the team were struggling on a number of fronts and wanted us to come live there for a year to help them.
After getting input from the field council, we agreed to go, with one stipulation. They must accept the fact that we would be gone often on trips to other countries.
God immediately showed Himself at work to answer my prayers of the past years. Even before we arrived, one of our teammates found a furnished apartment for us—a rarity in this city. We were able to move right in with the few things we’d stored in Ankara.
During our time in Iconium we made many friends, including one who claimed to make a decision for the Lord, but unfortunately hasn’t displayed any discernible spiritual growth.
We worked to help the team, but in the end it was evident that things had disintegrated too much and two of the couples left. This was sad, but when people aren’t willing to change, adapt and trust God, there is not other alternative.
Even though we left Iconium in 2001, I’ve continued to pray for our contacts there, and my relationship with the man who made a decision continues to this day. He now has a group of 6 friends who meet to discuss the New Testament. So God’s work goes on.