What a great responsibility and opportunity God has given me!
By Diks Bortnikovs
MADONA, Latvia – I am very excited for the opportunity that God has given me to serve as the new leader for Eagle’s Wings Camp and Training Center – especially, because of all God has done in my own life through this place and process of ministry.
When I was 18 years old, I started into a business that I thought was going to be the wonderful answer to my life. Soon after, my former boss landed in jail because of this very lifestyle and I was able to take over this business. I look back now at all the amazing ways God preserved and protected my in a very unhealthy situation and how He moved in a special way to draw me to Himself.
This happened while I was living with my girlfriend, who was a back-slidden Christian. Her daughter went to the very first Eagle’s Wings Camp and came home having accepted Christ. We all started going to the church in Madona then – Dustin was both pastor of Madona’s church and founder of the camp at that time. In just a few visits, I realized I needed Christ in my life, and prayed to receive Him with joy and tears all at once. This proceeded a wonderful change for my whole family, as Inita (whom I married soon after) also gave her life entirely up to Christ. (Our daughter Marite is now finishing her second year of Bible College in America – soon to return home).
Through the next years, God worked greatly in my life through the church and camp, while Dustin was discipling me. I began to be active in various activities and ministries. Eagle’s Wings camp gave me many opportunities for serving and soon I was able to host Bible studies in my own apartment.
Through the next five years, I was able to grow in many areas of service: leading games and activities, leading small groups, directing camps, building spec-homes to support the camp and church, leading Bible studies, leading the youth group. I received good teaching and practical training through my experiences at the camp and the church. Finally, in November 2009, I took on the role as Provisional Director of Eagle’s Wings Camp. Dustin continued to be a support to me in this role (along with Dan Roth), as I “learned the ropes”.
Now, in February 2011, I am excited to serve my Lord and Savior as the Director of the Camp completely. As God is calling Dustin to leave, I see a new phase of ministry and growth for my own life. I realize (with some fear) what a great responsibility and opportunity God has given me! Missions is not just our hopes, dreams and plans, but God’s fulfillment of His plan. I see this opportunity at Eagle’s Wings with amazing hope for so much that God will do in the lives of many through the next years there.
As Dustin and I have worked closely through these past few years, I feel that Eagle’s Wings has been as one of his children, and now I have been given the opportunity to care for this “child”, to see it grow, prosper and be used for God’s glory and the building of His Kingdom. I hope that as I have learned God’s love through Dustin, I can pass this love on to others and that Eagle’s Wings can be a place where many others learn the same.
I hope that so many who have been involved in praying for, serving alongside and supporting the work of Eagle’s Wings these past years will continue to be a part of this team together with me as God has entrusted me to lead this ministry forward and onward.