Macedonia 2019: Day 3 & 4

Update from the Macedonia Team: We spent the morning cleaning the street outside the Shift Center. As Fredy put it, “We want to show them that it isn’t just our spiritual life that has been changed, but our environment as well.” We cleaned up the road to the mosque and across the street to the school. We were surprised at how many people stopped to engage in conversation. People noticed and were intrigued. A teacher and several students talked for 10-15 minutes. A man from a store walked out and picked up a few cigarette butts on the sidewalk after watching us pick up hundreds of them. A shop owner stopped and handed out bottled water. It confused people that Americans were cleaning their street.

Our neighborhood cleanup was a great analogy for Christian life. Believers act differently and people notice and are intrigued. All areas of our lives serve as a witness. We are called to impact those around us – the Shift Center is doing that.

We spent the next morning worshiping with the local team. We sung praise songs followed by communion. We invited the Holy Spirit to move in mighty ways in Tetovo and asked God to unite us in our desire to glorify him. It was a simple yet powerful morning.

In the afternoon, we prepared for Philosophy Night and the women visited with a local friend of Dajana. The Muslim faith does not permit questioning. Philosophy night is designed to create a safe space for people to ask deep, important questions such as “what is the purpose of our life” and “how does objective truth effect a community?” Pastor spoke about Truth – is there truth, where does it come from and how do we determine if something is true. One father that attended and actively engaged in the conversation is the father of a boy that earlier in the week said to Hannah, “no one in Tetovo cares about God.” This family is very disillusioned with Islam. One of the team members explained to us, the people of Tetovo have only been exposed to Islam’s god and assume all gods are the same. The Shift Center is providing a different perspective or as one Muslim put it, “now we have an alternative in Tetovo.”