Lord, guide us in Bulgaria,
Lord, guide us then in Greece;
Lord, guide us by Thy sovereign will
... And by Thy perfect peace.
Lord, guide us as we take this trip
And witness in this land;
Lord, guide us by Thine unseen eye
And by Thy hidden hand.
Lord, guide us in these countries dark,
Lord, guide us day and night;
Lord, guide us by Thy matchless skill
To lost Deaf needing Light.
Lord, guide us as we come and go,
And, thus, our journey bless;
Lord, guide us by Thy mighty arm
And give us great success.
© Written by WDB at the Merrill Chapel
of Silent Word Ministries in Trenton, Georgia.
Common Meter: 220.127.116.11.
The 2013 Deaflympics are just 24 days away!
We are very excited about the upcoming evangelistic trip to reach the Deaf at the 22nd Deaf Olympic Games to be held in Bulgaria. We have said much about it in months gone by because it is such a great opportunity. We want to see many international Deaf have the chance to "hear" the Gospel of Jesus Christ for the very first time. That may seem like an exaggeration ... until you travel in the Deaf world for a while and see Deaf people within range of fundamental churches, but none that provide interpreting or services for them. (Most of the pastors I have met in India have never even heard of a church reaching Deaf people.)
On the Day of Pentecost, there were at least 15 language groups represented and 3000 were saved. I wonder how many were even present to hear the message that day! At the Deaflympics, we are told that there will be “about 4,000+ athletes representing approximately 80-90 countries.”
Imagine being around 4000+ Deaf athletes from around the world along with hundreds or thousands more Deaf who will be there for other reasons! Add to that number all the interpreters, family members, coaches, referees and judges, medical personnel, media personnel, and fans. Then there will be people like us who are there for other reasons. I believe we may see upwards of 20,000 people there as a direct result of the Deaflympics plus about 1.2 million Bulgarians who live in the region!
As always, we have two needs.
We need people like you to PRAY!
We need people like you to GIVE!
Why? Funds are needed to buy Gospel tracts and DVDs. We will be distributing two different Gospel DVDs to Deaf from all around the world. These DVDs will possibly go into 80 or more countries. (Some countries will have Deaf at the event but not have Deaf participating in the competition. Thus, it is possible to send Evangelistic DVDs with Deaf people back to possibly 100 countries.) Of course, there are other expenses on trips like this as well. Your investment in this evangelistic opportunity is greatly appreciated.
Thank you so much and may God bless you richly. David
If you would like to contact me about this trip click here.
I've known Pastor Chris Anderson since our university days. Loved his fellowship then and love his blog now (My Two Cents). He recently asked a bunch of missionaries for their "two cents" for a sermon he was preaching. I thought the questions were good and I post my answers here.
What biblical passages have been particularly used of the Lord to point you toward the mission field?
1) The WHOLE of Scripture more than any passages ... of course a few stand out:
2) The Book of Acts.
3) All the Great Commission passages! Simple and clear.
4) Acts 20:24 ... "But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God."
I'm wrapping up a series on evangelism and I'm wanting to end it with a missions emphasis, praying that the Lord will move some of our people to seriously consider taking a more "front lines" role in the Great Commission. How would you counsel me to address the issue from the pulpit? What would you caution me against?
1) Let them know the incredible difficulty of "leaving houses and lands ..." for the Gospel. It's easy to feel the tingly sensations of missionary surrender by listening to a well-crafted, musically-powerful missionary DVD in a climate controlled auditorium and then hearing an impassioned sermon. But turn off the A/C when you preach the sermon. Pump in the smells of body odor and strange food and cigarette smoke. Blast some insipid Balkan or tribal music in the background. Talk about depression and loneliness and pain and smog and threats and fears and danger and discomfort and frustration about the illogical grammar. Talk about there being 10 Demas-es that rip your heart out for every Timothy that is faithful. Talk about pouring out blood, sweat and tears and seeing the harvest come in slower than you thought it would. Talk about missionary kids struggling to adjust and forever becoming "third-culture" people -- neither being culturally American nor Timbuktuan. Missionary sacrifice is overwhelming. This isn't in the fine print -- it's plastered all over the New Testament -- but we fail to present this side because we don't want to sound like we're bellyaching. War is Hell.
2) Let them know the incredible reward of doing all this for Christ's sake. Talk up the "joy" that was set before Christ at the cross. Talk up eternal treasure. Mention the party thrown over the 1-in-100 rescued from destruction. Overshadow the immense difficulties of missionary sacrifice by the overwhelming rewards in eternity. Make them jealous for God's glory and tell them how incredibly amazing it is to see God turn on the spiritual light in a pagan's heart. Let them imagine how tear-jerkingly awesome it is to hear a sinner calling upon the name of the Lord, after being convicted by the Holy Spirit through someone as unworthy as them. And even in the absence of such conversions on a large scale, let them know that there is great fulfillment in knowing that, amidst the pagan sounds and oppressive darkness, you have been sent as a light, lit by the Light. And though no one come, though no one heed, you are there, and they know you are there, and HE knows you are there -- and HE is there with you. Always. Until it's all over and you go to your final sleep saying, "I left it all on out there on the field -- and it was worth it all."
Dear Partners in the Gospel, (For those who did not find our website earlier and who did not know about this outreach)
There can be no better way to start this report than with the words: To God be the glory, great things He hath done. Yes, He hath done great things whereof we are glad. Thank you to all who gave to the 2009 Deaflympics Project and to all who prayed for it. God has answered your prayers and rewarded your eternal investment!
Our official SWMI team consisted of 21 people, 15 hearing and 6 Deaf, 13 men and 8 women. However, God also brought us five other folks from the US who joined our team in Taiwan in the distribution of Gospel materials. (Three of those were Chinese Christians from Maryland who spoke Chinese.) He then added about 20 other Chinese members who live in Taiwan to our team. What a blessing to see all these people work together to serve the Lord as we witnessed to multitudes of lost Deaf and hearing folks.
Thank you to all who gave to the DVD and Tract Project! We were able to distribute just over 10,000 free Gospel DVDs and about 43,000 Gospel tracts. What a blessing it is in itself to know that so many pieces of Gospel witness are being spread, read, and watched around the world. There were several highlights of the trip. One was giving DVDs to Deaf people from hard and closed countries such as Pakistan, Belarus, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Iraq, China, and Russia. One amazing highlight was the distribution of DVDs to the Deaf team from Iran, and then to have them return 15 minutes later and ask for more DVDs to take to their friends back home!
If you would like to see some photos of the trip, go to:
Another interesting highlight was to see that the official Taiwanese Deaflympics booth, which was selling souvenir shirts in the main display area, was playing on their display table our SWMI DVD of Ronnie Rice preaching the Gospel with actions and pictures!
Of course, one of the blessings which the Lord allowed us was to see 21 people make professions of faith in Christ! Again, to God be the glory. We had prayed, and had asked you to pray, for souls to be saved. He wonderfully blessed the efforts of our team. Eight Deaf trusted Christ as personal Savior. Six of those were through a message preached by SWM evangelist Mike Green. The other 13 who were saved were hearing people. Most of them bowed their heads to receive Christ right there at our booth, although one made a profession of faith in our hotel.
Many, many other Deaf and hearing were personally witnessed to. The Gospel was planted in some, watered in others, and reaped in the 21 mentioned. The Holy Spirit now is working in lives to save others in many different countries. As always, only God knows what the final results from this trip will be. Let us continue to pray for people to be saved as a result of this trip.
One other blessing was to see four of our own team members raise their hands indicating that God was specifically calling them to full time, foreign service with the Deaf. That rejoices my heart and is more than I had prayed for or could have expected! Glory to God!
Of course there is much, much more that could be said. However, I wanted to get this brief report into your hands as soon as I returned from Taiwan and China. I will have to write about my China trip in another letter. God blessed there above and beyond my expectations as well. May Jesus Christ be praised!
SWMI and I are truly grateful to the Lord for His grace and power, and to you, His servants, for your cooperation in the Gospel ministry of reaching both Deaf and hearing people worldwide.
Great Things He Hath Done… Over and Over Again,
International Director SWMI