a pretty big day

Fifteen years ago this morning I landed in England and took a bus from Heathrow to Gatwick. Upon arrival at Gatwick I took a flight to Budapest and landed in the early afternoon. I was met by a tall Hungarian who was wearing a Covenant sweatshirt, he was the deputy headmaster of the school I was going to visit. Gabor is my oldest and one of my best friends in Hungary. I am grateful to God for our friendship.

Don’t ask me why. I cannot give you reasons, but that 7 day visit began a love affair with a people, a culture, a place, that continues today. Indeed it is from Hungary that my growing knowledge and love for the Balkans grows.

One regret is that I speak very little Hungarian, but I can get around, ask for directions, order food, buy tickets for trains and busses. As time goes by, I find so much English in Budapest that it is less important, so I won’t wring my hands too much about that fact.

I have a good number of Hungarians whom I count as friends, though it seems I seldom have enough time to visit with them. I guess I need more time to be able to invest in these friendships.

As I thought about this post and the significance of anniversaries, I realized that today is also significant in that 32 years ago I believed in and began to follow Jesus.

For about two months I had been attending church and participating in Bible study. I had not been prodded to “become a Christian” so much  I had simply been guided in Bible study by a guy who lived peace in front of me. During a Bible study on a Saturday night which looked at Col. 3 and the “put off, put on” verses, I realized that I needed a saviour. I asked God to forgive me and change me. He did. He still is. The journey continues.


Filed under things Central European

4 responses to “a pretty big day

  1. Uhrin Gábor

    🙂 …and those seven days 15 years ago really meant something to me too!

  2. Carrie Souter

    I’m so glad you have shared your journey with Tom, and introduced him to your mission in Hungary. I know it has had a major impact on his life. Bless you!

  3. Tory

    Thanks; I enjoyed reading your story.

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