Lance & Megan's Blog

Art of Hope


Hope is such an important thing. It is so hard to live without hope. During times of uncertainty, war, economic struggles, many will feel that there is no hope. We have certainly seen this first hand in Ukraine. I can’t tell you the number of times someone has said something negative about Ukraine. So many want to leave, people have verbally said, “there is no hope here.”

We are saddened by the number of people that are leaving, we’ve lost friends from English club and neighbors. We are saddened by the despair that many feel.


We are happy though to bring hope to people. We had a great opportunity to partner with a local cafe and organize an art exhibit with the theme of hope. We both worked to find artists and bring things together. We had one of our Ternopil staff members submit some photos and we had a YWAM worker from another city in Ukraine submit tattoo art as well as two other local artists.


The final result was great, it was small but was a perfect start to a partnership and future projects with this cafe. Lance shared some thoughts on hope at the opening and a local pastor shared a song on hope.


9 Art exhibit

Here is what Lance said:


To what do you wrap your arms of hope around and hold fast?  This is a crucial question in times like these.  When all around us seems to be unstable and the things that once, in our minds, were unmovable are now shakable. There is a proverb that says, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick.” This is very true. When you look around, it is easy to feel your heart and soul grown in despair. Yet even then, Hope dies last.

Hope is a driving force that is imbedded deep in our souls. Who can forget Galadriel in this iconic scene from the books and subsequent films “Lord of the Rings”, “And you, Ring-bearer,’ she said, turning to Frodo. ‘I come to you last who are not last in my thoughts… ‘In this phial… is caught the light of Eärendil’s star, set amid the waters of my fountain. It will shine still brighter when night is about you. May it be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out.” Galadriel wasn’t just giving light, she was giving hope.

Hope reminds us that good wins over evil.  That there are things worth fighting for in this world.  It reminds us that things we do now do effect the future of our grandchildren.  That is why we must set our highest hopes on something unshakable, unchanging, and everlasting. This world will never look the same from yesterday to today. Hope in the Unchangeable is the only consistent.

So as you look at these depictions of art, we invite you to search high and low, near and far to find your hope. To find the thing that is worth hoping in, the something that in which you will be able to wrap your arms of hope and know, hope never fails.

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Working for the east


Our base has joined forces with the other YWAM bases in Ukraine to help relief efforts in the east. Our base has been at the forefront of the work by hosting families from the east as well as sending supplies and people to help and encourage those there.

Art therapy

Art therapy

We have hosted a number of families to come for a respite at our base. These families are not looking for a new home in the west, but are wanting to remain in the east to help others left behind with out any way to leave. They continue to help others, encourage people, and give aid where aid is needed. We felt it was important to be able to give them a break and fill them up as they have been pouring out to others.


Most recently, we prepared 100 gift bags to give to soldiers. We wanted to send some Christmas cheer to those away from families and loved ones. Each bag was filled with chocolates, candy, a flashlight, a pair of socks, a card, razors, gum, and coffee. Some of our staff went to the east to deliver the gifts and to also give extra warm clothes, Bibles, books, sausages, nuts, oranges and homemade goods. They also brought a coffee maker and plan on making fresh coffee for the men.


The relief work that we have been organizing and participating in was featured on the main YWAM website, you can read about the last trip HERE. If you would like to help financially with the work, you can click HERE and choose Ukraine relief from the drop down menu.

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A Christmas Tea


2014 marks the first year that we had a women’s Christmas Tea. One of our staff members used to live in Crimea and has hosted teas before so she was able to lead the way in hosting the first in Ternopil. It was a miracle that it all came together and a miracle that we had room for everyone. We originally planned for 30 ladies, but we had space for 48. Guess how many ladies showed up? Yep, 48 exactly!

All the the ladies on staff, cooked a whole bunch of yummy goodies, I can testify that the ladies on staff know how to bake yummy goodies. There is no doubt about that! We had two tables full of delicious and delectable treats and one table full of tea and hot chocolate.

Yummy food!

Yummy food!

We had door prizes galore and many people were surprised at the generosity displayed. I led a time of doing a craft together. Everyone got an orange, some cloves and a ribbon. It was easy for people to push the cloves into the orange to create design of some sort. It was a simple air freshener for the home.

We also had several games that involved people getting up and getting to know other ladies. I led a game where two teams had to race to unwrap a gift while wearing over-sized gloves.

Sharing a message of hope.

Sharing a message of hope.

Two of our staff members spoke during the evening. Both ladies were able to share of God’s love and forgiveness to a crowd of women whom many had not heard of what God has done for them. It was the perfect way to share the Gospel during this season. There was also some live music to entertain the ladies and the evening ended with a Christmas ornament exchange where everyone got to go home with a new ornament for their tree.


Everyone enjoyed the evening, everyone went home with a fun goody bag and a message of hope for the holidays.


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English Club Christmas party


Every year we have a Christmas party for English club, every year we have lots of food, every year we have the Christmas gift exchange. Everyone loves to come and have fun. We usually sing some carols, share what we will be doing for the holidays and then have our gift exchange.


It is always fun to see how people react to the gift exchange. We do the classic “steal” the gift game. This is really hard for people to understand and to accept. Some people just can’t bring themselves to take a gift from someone. (One year, for our staff party we did the gift exchange and the only people who stole a gift were the two Americans…) Somehow our English club has managed to get over the usual hesitation of stealing and they really get into the game.

Group shot

Group shot

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Excursions out


Since it has been such a busy year, Lance and I have hardly had a vacation. We managed to squeeze in a few days in mid November to make a trip to Lviv. Lviv is a beautiful city full of sites to see.

Here are a few pictures from on our way to Lviv.



And a few from in Lviv.

We were there right as fall was ending and winter was starting.

We were there right as fall was ending and winter was starting.

At Lychakiv Cemetery

At Lychakiv Cemetery

The Lychakiv Cemetery is stunning in the fall

The Lychakiv Cemetery is stunning in the fall

We had a great time away resting, and seeing some sights that we had never seen before. Lviv is a city that we often go to since it has the nearest airport. We have seen many of the normal tourist sights but there were a few we have never managed to go to. We also wanted to see a few castles on the way to Lviv but they were closed when we came.

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