Sunday, April 29, 2012

90 days left...

I have always been fascinated by what history 'has to offer' ... ever since I was a child... days, years...eras, ages... all sorts of times...each of them with it's own fascinations...with it's things worth being admired for, or studied for...
Without obeying the saying that things, visions and interests change in time, history has been and still is my all time favourite in the life lived so far. Breaking the saying of our time 'history is written by [for] winners'...the historic studies, of whose way of being studied [and why not done and written], Thucydides said to be 'without hatred and unbiased', have always fascinated me. I had teachers during middle school and highschool who called me 'a rough diamond'...  I was doing a great job taking either and A or an F, according to the subject of the paper... and knowing my weakness, it wasn't very difficult to take advantage of it.
Maybe you're wondering why I wrote all these words and what's the use of them for this year's edition of Plopu camp... because, in fact, this post is all about this event [historic event if you want]. As I was saying, I have been [am and will be for the rest of my life] charmed by history and historic events. I've been fascinated by the strategies applied by different people during history, those applied by different leaders, their extraordinary abilities of leading completely different armies, of surmounting very critical situations through perfect strategies and of saving apparently defeated battles have dazzled me completely. I have many times wondered what they had in common... What was their primary drive? How did they manage to surmount such situations and to command in such a way, even when any weakness or wrong step could cost you a kingdom, and empire or even more...even your own life? 
I have minutely studied every corner of history, and the answers seem to be pretty simple but rather interesting...
Speaking of the Persians, it was unity and cohesion... speaking of the Greeks, it was willpower, ambition and the desire to be free... speaking of the Romans, it was discipline and loyalty... speaking of others, there were others...
Of course, we could name some great strategists but history is not quiet when it comes to the fors of againsts of their means of gaining success. I won't even speak about biblical characters who were remarkable strategists or military leaders ... even though one like Joshua or David would be high in a hierarchy of facing some of the 'dangerous people' in history...and I will not do this simply because the only remarkable example I want to portray is the one of Jesus Himself. One cannot compare Him to anyone... in a comparison with Him, the contest would be so uneven that I don't want to derogate any of these people's historico-biblical fascination.
We keep hearing that we're in the middle of a crisis, that things are not going very well, that the problems we face as people and as communities are extremely big and they seem to overwhelm us... The church as an institution appears to be outrun by the current problems people face as society and why not, as individuals. More and more often, we see Christian values attacked and modified, we see unrealistic people, and people wondering if there is any hope left for the better. We see old people who too easily give up fighting to invest their lives in others, not becoming role-models and menthors for the next generations... we see young people in need of role-models, who, despite the fact that they seek them, don't manage to find them, not even where there should be plenty. We see people at war, only because of a different idea, being capable of splitting-up and building walls, digging ditches, keeping a curfew over the people who, they think, robbed them of their most precious ideas... We see so much indifference and carelessness...
Seeing such a picture, I ask myself, and you probably do the same, how can I be a genuine Christian?... what do I have to do? "what kind of man should I be..." [paraphrasing the Apostle Peter].
There's a saying, a great quote which all Christians should keep in mind, and that is: "Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it", and please believe me when I say that those are very true words. History has proven it.
This historical painting...which is painted around us will describe the time and the way we related to society and why not, to ourselves. So, if you feel that the painting you're part of is painted in colours and shades that don't place you in a good light, if you think that this paiting could look extremely different if the context in which it is painted and why not, the Artist are different, then we invite you between the 29th of July and the 4th of August at Plopu Camp 28...
We are convinced that this year too, we'll experience this wonderful slogan "the place where God touches you", this words being uttered not only for defining a ministry, but also being words tried again and again during the 28 years of pure reality. If two years ago, Plopu was special for someone, and if last year Plopu was somehow different for some, Plopu 28 is a very special edition for me...from various reasons, so, for me as also for you, Plopu 28 is and will be a challenge.
Maybe you wonder what you'll find there...
Well, I can already tell you that you'll find devoted people, people willing to invest their lives on others, people willing to help whoever may need it. Prayer, devotionals, individual and collective Bible study, workshops on different topics, sports, reading and music, the firecamp particular to the evenings at Plopu, and maybe the most important thing - Bible study meant to help us in moments like these will not lack.
If during history, each age and each empire had it's own traits, a Christian must also have his own characteristics. A Christian must be ready...but for this, it is obvious that the Persans' type of cohesion will not suffice, neither will the willpower or ambition of the Greeks' take them too far, nor even the self-imposed discipline of the Romans' will be enough in the long run...
What will then be the solution...or the answer?
If you want standard solutions in 3 or 4 steps... if you want spectacular recipes of how to be a 'super-Christian' over-night, I don't have it, neither do I claim that I will ever be able to provide something similar...
All I can say is that I invite you to discover together how we can be "Equipped to win! Winners...together", and as the main text for this Bible-study, I invite you to read the texts in Ephesians 6.10-18 or Ephesians 1.3-23 [and why not, others similar to those, using them as your own contribution to this subject... you "brick" in this complex "building"]. Obviously, each day of the camp will have a smaller theme inside this big theme, and I hope that both I and those of you who will decide to spend 7 days at Plopu, will be touched, changed and equipped for what follows, for the time we live in, and we will live in.
You are welcome!!
Till then, there are 90 days left, 90 days when you can pray for the administrative team, for those who will participate or will take care of different segments in the programme, for all those who will participate to this camp, for wisdom and guidance in decisions, words and deeds, and of course, last but not least, for God's holy blessing over Plopu 28.
There are only 90 days left.
See you at Plopu 28.
"Equipped to win! Winners...together!" 
Yours,
Misu R.

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