Welcome! It's wonderful to see you here!

I'm a passionate writer - and therefore spend most of my time writing thriller novels. But I also live an interesting life in the nations. This blog is here for that aspect of my life - our life - I live with my wonderful wife and two daughters.

I believe in encouragement. I live for obedience. I believe in learning from our experiences, and this blog exists for both of those, and more.

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I was part of the leadership team in St Petersburg, Russia - which planted Hope Church in 2009.(www.hopechurchstpetersburg.com).
In March 2012 Hope Church sent my family to plant into Tallinn, the Capital of Estonia. I therefore lead this small but growing church plant team. Here is the website for Hope Tallinn (www.hopetallinn.ee)

For details on our journey here, read the series called Adventures of Faith which is linked for you on the right hand column, just below. That details our original journey to Russia and then onto Tallinn 4 years later.

Author for fiction novels - Cherry Picking (2012), The Last Prophet (2015), The Tablet (2015) and The Shadow Man (2016) are available on all major bookselling sites. Please visit: www.timheathbooks.com

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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Soldiers -- ˈsəʊldʒə --

We were all born into a war zone.

I'm not talking between one nation and another, or people groups, dictators or anything like that.  There has been a battle raging in the heavens since before the creation of the world.  In fact, when Adam and Eve ate that fruit and ushered in the fall, it really was only the fall of humankind.  An original fall had happened, when a created angel wanted the place of God, and the punishment for that stupid idea was to be sent from heaven - with a third of the angels.  The devil has been waging war against God, and his plans, ever since.

There are some very 'dangerous' places in the world today if we just switch on the news.  Yet something I've always said is this:
"I'd rather be in the middle of a war-zone inside the will of God, than in a place of (relative) safety outside of his will."
Oh, to be foolish enough to be outside his will!  It doesn't bear thinking about really.

There is a spiritual battle raging for Tallinn.  That's why we are here.

They say, 'Estonians don't do religion.'  And looking around (my Facebook feed is often full of examples proving this fact!) you'd have to say this seems the case.

It's certainly not an easy place to plant a church!

But, I don't really believe that Estonians, or anyone to that fact, simply 'don't do God.'  What I do think is true is that Estonians haven't done God, and haven't had a history of seeing the Bible preached for what it really says. Their rejection, at best, is of a god they think they know about.  A god their communist leaders of the past said didn't exist.  A belief system laughed at in schools (it still is nowadays too!).

Put any Estonian before a living, breathing, healing and all loving, all forgiving God, and they too, like millions of others, suddenly will do God.  I'm convinced of the fact.  That's a large part of why we are here.

'Tim' doesn't have the answers in himself.  Nothing about me is going to change this nation.  But I do know someone who can.

This last week I had another Estonian tell me they don't do religion, and therefore turned down my offer to them to share my personal story.  I was at least able to agree that the God they don't believe in is probably a god I wouldn't believe in either.  We'll see if one day he gives me the chance to really share who Jesus is.

To plant a church here, to even get up to twenty people (the thought seems like a lifetimes effort away!) is going to take something incredible.  Because, as I've said, there is a battle raging for Estonia.

Officially, Estonia ranks number 2 in the world of most atheistic nations. Number 1 is North Korea.  One of the challenges with Estonia is the population.  Doing a little research online, it suggests in North Korea, there are only 1.7% who are Christians (there are other religions showing higher too, but for the sake of comparison, I'll stick to Christianity.  Estonia doesn't have many other religions represented anyway.)  

1.7% is a low percentage, for sure.  Estonia, though the lowest Christian nation in Europe, must have a higher percentage than that - but, here's the thing.  North Korea has a population of 24.9 million people - 1.7% therefore represents 423,000 people!  That's a third of the total population of Estonia, or more to the point, the entire population of Tallinn!  And yet, there are something like only 4,000 Christians here in the capital, maybe a few more.  But not tens of thousands.

Estonia needs something special!

I used the quote from Winston Churchill mainly because we have a General who is Great!  The greatest in fact!

2 Chronicles 20:15 says; "For the battle is not yours, but God’s."

Thinking about this nation, thinking about the Christian brothers and sisters we are praying will move here to join us, it's wonderfully reassuring to remind myself that this is God's battle.  As I said last time in my post on obedience, we are only here because it was first His idea.  And that idea involved seeing a vibrant, spirit filled community loving the city and all whom are put before us.  Serving this great place, being a blessing to all.

Does that stir you?  Want to come and join us to see this happen?

Only the battle hardened, God called, service trained soldiers need apply...
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