10/14/13

Upcoming Article in Albanian Christian Magazine

"Ilira Reviste" - the only Christian Women's
Magazine in Albania
I am very pleased to share with you that I have been accepted as a contributing writer to Albania's first magazine for Christian women! Recently, I contacted the editor-in-chief of "Ilira Revista", which publishes 5 issues a year, and discussed some of the articles I have written for various Christian media. Since I am a regular contributor to The Biblical Coalition's blog, and have published "Redeemed from the Pit" with Calvary Press two years ago, Migena was most interested in my submitting an article on eating disorders.

Needless to say, I was very happy to write about hope and healing from anorexia and bulimia, which have become very wide-spread in Eastern Europe. (Two years ago, when I first went to Albania on a missions trip, I was shocked to learn from teenage girls that eating disorders were rampant in their country. As a kid growing up at the end of the Cold War, I remember when Albania was still a Third World country!)

"Ilira Reviste" will translate my 1,500 word article into Albanian, and when it is published I will feature it here (along with the English-language original, of course!) I am thrilled that the Lord has allowed me this opportunity, and that someone in Albania may be blessed or encouraged to turn away from her bulimia by something I write. Since I am in the process of trying to get "RFTP" translated and published in Albania, the editor's choice of subject matter is particularly timely.

This opportunity comes on the heels of a bigger event: biblical counseling is making headway in Albania. There are a couple of NANC-certified counselors who have ministered there for several years, Sue and Blair Alvidrez who, along with the pastor of Grace Church in Tirana, were instrumental in bringing NANC fellows Timothy Pasma and Brad Brandt to Albania. This team led a several-week-long biblical counseling conference in different cities in Albania, including Tirana, Korce, and Durres. They brought the training to a number of churches, as well as preaching. It is great to see local churches equipped with nouthetic principles. Having been there twice, and with so many dear friends in Albania, naturally I followed Pastor Tim's updates and details on the training with great interest, delight.....and a little envy! Thanks to the Alvidrezes, two Tirana pastors and missionaries from Grace Baptist,  the Biblical Counseling Coalition now has an Albanian branch - Koalicioni i K√ęshillimit Biblik Shqiptar.

Candid confession: I wish I were still there! I have dreams about Tepelena and Bunec at least three times a month. I miss my young friends there so much it brings me to tears sometimes, and my joy at seeing biblical counseling brought to my beloved Shqiperia was mingled with a deep desire to be somehow involved.

And thus, I write. And God opened a door. I cannot move my family to Albania; I cannot even afford to go there as often as I'd like. In fact, I cannot even speak Albanian! (Bulgarian, despite the two countries' geographic proximity, is a completely different language family.) But I can write. This is the gift God gave me, and He is gracious to open doors - even in Albania -  in order to use it for His glory.

And I am so thankful.

Zoti ju bekofte!! (God bless you!)


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