|Fight the good fight for the faith.
Keep your hold on eternal life,
to which you were called and about
which you gave a good testimony
in front of many witnesses.1Timothy 6:12
|I have been...praying for the River of Joy project and had a vision from the Lord this morning.
There was a pebble dropped into a pool of water, and I watched as the ripples expanded.
I believe God was telling me that the pebble is the River of Joy project and the ripples are
Christianity and the heart of God spreading across the Ukraine. I got the sense that He is
pleased and He will Bless this project.
A Vision the Lord gave Annette Longhi ~ October 17, 2007
|Testimonies ~ Can I get a witness?
|Thank you for praying for us, and for sharing that encouraging and confirming vision Annette, and
thank the Lord for Judy Martin, your friend who not only showed me how to do a website the easy
way, but along with her husband Vernon, actually funded this one for us! Thank God for their
adoption success. We started trying to make a website several years ago. It all seemed so very
expensive and time consuming, until now! We believe it is a great instrument for accomplishing the
task God set before us. I surely see His hand in it.
~ David Gerry Hallowell, founder, River of Joy Foundation.
I am excited about the way God is leading us to bless regional villages with special events that help
villagers accept us and our message of salvation. Half of the children at camp this year came to us
unsaved and went home new believers. Parents and other grown-up villagers came in for our
evening meetings too. River of Joy has already made a spiritual and social impact, and has the
potential to make a big difference in Crimean village life. Seeing the way Peter got right to work at
the River of Joy project site also gives me hope that the project will be moving forward at light speed
soon. Right now I am working on some legal issues concerning some of our property and the tax
payments due on it, but I know that God will take us through them. He is ever faithful.
~ Alena Navitski, Director River of Joy-Crimea
They conquered him by the blood of the lamb and by the word of their testimony
I have many dreams and goals. My global dream is to save and help orphans in Ukraine. I want to
help the parched and famished orphans in need. I want them all to have loving families and a good
life. I will do this with my little sister. We will pray, raise money and awareness and do the best we
can to help them. I am planning to adopt my own children when I grow up. I will also work to help the
orphan situation in Ukraine. This is my mission statement for my life, I will work hard to achieve
~ Jeffrey, VA 11 year old
As I came to visit you the first time (2002) there was lots of (spiritual) opposition. It manifested physically. I got stranded in
Kiev with a severe stomach ache, didn't think I would make it down to see you. Then God worked it out (as only he
could). A prophet with a healing gift was staying with us. By God's grace, the Lord answered that Prophet's prayer and
I was healed. When we finally got to your office, a vision came to me as a strong wind. I saw a huge flaming arrow shot
forth from your office. It landed in dry grass, caught fire and spread quickly like an awesome wild fire bringing revival.
Interestingly, even though it was only one arrow shot out, it hit many places and impacted more than one area.
Prophetically, it seems God was sovereignly going to shoot out this arrow, the ministry God gave you there, and many
lives will be touched by it even in the Tatar community. Later we went out to the River of Joy site (you called it, "Living
Water" then) and from the events that occurred there, and the Prophetic revelation God gave there, we were able to see
more of God's unfolding picture. [George goes on to say he will share more about that later.]
~ George Gotman, Upstate NY
In the last couple of years, God has turned my heart toward children, especially the orphans.
River of Joy captures the heart of God toward orphaned children and families in need. What a
tremendous blessing we experienced while in Ukraine adopting our daughter. It was not by
chance the flat we rented was sublet from David. Spending time with David, the founder of River
of Joy-Crimea, was a wonderful blessing. God has called him to the Ukraine and anointed him to
minister in such a variety of ways to Ukrainians. He recognizes the needs and prayerfully carries
out God’s plan. God is using him to awaken and make known the burdens of orphans and the
people of Ukraine. In my opinion, there is no greater way to invest my time and finances than
touching these people with the love of Jesus. We are blessed to have our family become life
long partners with River of Joy-Crimea . ~ Judy Martin, new River of Joy Partner, Virginia
David, the very thing that you are involved in - to dispense the father heart of God to those no one
adopts - is very close to Gods heart; however, as the traditional church (CAWKI: Church As We
Know It) has moved away from Gods heart so much, folks like you feel strangely alone, almost
back-stabbed. Adoption is at the heart of the father in heaven, and I believe that Christians
reflecting this heartbeat therefore need to be world champions of adoption. The early church took
heed to the words: "Look after orphans and widows" (Jam 1:26), and Christians where famous for
picking up kids sometimes literally thrown away on the garbage dumps of their cities. These garbage
dumps of a society that throws away its own children are today more full than ever.
Millions of children on the planet are orphans, because their parents are either victims of AIDS, war, alcohol, divorce,
violence, or the children are half-orphans, kids who theoretically do have a physical place they could call home, but they
are unwanted, not cared for, ignored, or even ill treated and regularly abused. They need a place of refuge, and where
should they run to if not to that heavenly invention of the divine family of God that the father in heaven has invented to
provide parenthood for those without parents, the church.
If orphanages have been the main way CAWKI has dealt with the issue, I propose that adoption into Christian families
and house churches as forms of extended families is the main way CAGWI (Church As God Wants It) picks up the
challenge. Thorsten Moritz says it like this: "The ultimate basis of a biblical theology of adoption is found in God's love for
his creation and his determination for his people to emulate this love. Through Jesus, and only through him, God's
people can finally succeed in demonstrating to the world God's adoptive intent for fallen humanity.
Incorporation into God's model for humanity is the only hope the world's waiting children have. Adoption lies
at the heart of Gods concern, and we can see it in salvation: God adopts us in Christ; Christology: Jesus the foremost
son of God; evangelism: finding the lost [adopting them] for Jesus; ecclesiology: the community of the adopted ones.
What sort of salvation are we advertising if we keep our doors shut to the orphans of this world? This would be a serious
caricature of God's grace. Just because we already have our own children, adoption does not have to be the exception.
Not even a biological child can prosper without being adopted by a life giving community. Biology alone does not secure
that. The church is the family of God united by its common bond in Christ, its bloodline, and commitment to that new
family of God, as in the case of Jesus, is more important than the commitment to our lineage. God entrusts children to
our care. Whether he does so by 'biology + adoption' or 'adoption irrespective of biology' is spiritually and biblically
irrelevant. We therefore need to encourage and facilitate child adoptions by Christians wherever possible, and prioritize
child adoption as a truly Christian core value."
So let us therefore be as creative and strategic as possible in seeing that it becomes the normal habit of Christian
families to adopt a child or two, raise them up in the fear of the Lord, and disciple them into mature followers of Jesus,
that same Jesus who said to his disciples: "I will not leave you orphans!" (John 14:17). Yes, we will be able to change the
world by planting millions of house churches. But also by changing the world through extending Gods supernatural love
and parenthood - one orphan at a time.
~ Wolfgang Simson, Author of the landmark book,"Houses that Change the World" and "15 Theses"