Last month, I had the privilege of serving with Overseas Instruction in Counseling and taught 200 students over a 4 day period in this retreat center (pictured) in Assiut, Egypt. The highlights for me were:

  1. Sharing the Gospel with a young man who had a “works righteousness mentality” that he falsely believed would save him. He prayed with me!
  2. Teaching 160+ people who were not completely sold on the biblical approach to addiction PRIOR to the 3 lessons but loved what was taught to them from the Word of God. After the teachings, the leader invited the translator to teach MORE in their area in the future and that door had been closed prior to the training day. Praise God for His favor!
  3. Spending time in the Word with 40+ students who were finishing their 5th and 6th modules with OIC. They were a serious-minded group and will use what they learned to teach others in their local churches.
  4. Parting the Red Sea. Ok, so the truth is that I tried to part the Red Sea and was a little less successful than Moses in Exodus 14.
  5. Worshiping the Lord with Egyptians in their local church in New Cairo and then serving communion to the congregation. Big time honor for both me and Dr. Wayne Vanderwier.
  6. Listening to former students of OIC talk about how they are using biblical counseling in their local churches after completing the training.
  7. Signing my book, The Heart of Addiction, that was translated in Arabic. I signed about 50 of them and took tons of pictures with students. I am pretty sure I blew up Facebook in Egypt for about 2 hours!

Overall, I learned that the Gospel is relevant all over the world and that there is practical help and hope in the Word of God for all cultures. I am grateful to my translator, Yasser, and to OIC for inviting me to teach. It was a fantastic trip.

-Mark (grateful to the Lord for the work of the Holy Spirit)