Last week we met a girl named Sonia who lives in Krasnoyarsk, Russia. She made friends with Ikáz [ee-KAHZ], a boy in her class. Who remembers something about Ikáz? [Let children respond.] Ikáz and his family came from another country, Armenia. [Locate Armenia on a map. Then locate Krasnoyarsk in central Russia.] He couldn’t speak Russian very well, and some children in his class teased him. But Sonia didn’t tease him; she wanted to be his friend.
Sonia and her family invited Ikáz to go to church and Adventurers. Ikáz asked his grandmother if he could go with Sonia’s family to church, and she said it was OK, even though Grandmother belongs to a different church. “Some of my grandmother’s friends asked her why she let me go to the Adventist church instead of taking me to her church,” Ikáz says. “Grandmother said that she is glad that I’m learning about God. I’ve invited her to go with us to church, but she has to work.”
Ikáz likes Sabbath School, especially the singing. But he loves the Adventurer Club. “I get to wear the Adventurer neckerchief and learn neat things about nature,” he says. “I’ve learned that I must always be honest. And I memorize lots of Bible verses. I get my grandmother to help me, and that way she learns them too,” he adds.
“I’m glad that Sonia told me about Jesus and invited me to church,” Ikáz says. “Now I’m learning how to tell others about God’s love too. When my grandmother was sick, I told her to ask Jesus to heal her, and He would. I prayed with her, and she got better.”
Ikáz is eager for the day that his brother and sisters can attend church and Adventurers with him. In the meantime, he tells them Bible stories and they watch a Bible DVD together.
Every month the church prints a small newspaper to give away. Ikáz always takes extra copies to give to people he meets at the bus stop. When the church printed a story about Ikáz in the newspaper, he took extra copies and urged everyone to read the story about him. “I hope they will want to know more about Jesus because I share the newspapers,” he says. “But not everyone wants to know about God. I gave my teacher one of the papers and tried to tell her about Jesus, but she wouldn’t listen. But that’s OK. I may not be able to tell her about God, but I can pray for her!”
Sonia invited Ikáz to attend church, and now Ikáz invites his friends to come to church, too. “If we all invite our friends to learn about Jesus, soon everyone will know!” Ikáz says. And when we give our mission offering, we’re helping tell others about Jesus, too.