What God can bring about in 10 days (some things you would never expect)
8 people saved, dozens of new visitors in churches, scattered all over Omsk region and 3000+km travelled.
What a trip! When I picked up this three doctor team at the airport, I did not expect such a whirlwind of activity, nor the amazing work God accomplished.
Working from dawn ‘til dusk
While this was a medical outreach effort, it was primarily an evangelism trip. When Maria (name changed for security reasons) measured blood pressure and checked lungs, she could talk to patients about their soul. It is amazing how God opened the hearts of so many unsaved and made them receptive to the Gospel.
She has “seen„ so many different people–from pastors and their wives to drug addicts, who had lost their limbs to frostbite, from surly grandmothers to children with special needs. I praised God when I noticed that almost everyone exiting her “office„ had a huge grin on their face, because the doctor not only attempted to cure a sickness, but also touched their soul with kindness and dignity.
I once was blind but now I see…
Another doctor we had was an optometrist–let’s call her Anna. Truth be told, the prospect of getting free reading glasses was the driving force that resulted in so many people coming to us.
To decide what prescription to give each person, Anna used a chart with Bible verses! This was an awesome segue to ask “Do you understand what you’ve just read?„ Thus, a vision test became an evangelism tool. Anna and her helper, Sofia, personally led 4 souls to Christ!
While our doctors met with patients in their makeshift “offices„ Ivan and I greeted visitors, helped to maintain a semblance of order and shared the gospel with them. At one church 30 people showed up at 11 am, and some of them had to wait 3.5 hours to be examined by the doctor!
I had the privilege to lead 2 men to Christ and to present the plan of salvation to many others. One lady was very close to praying the sinner’s prayer but said she would do it at home. Please pray for Natasha to get saved!
We finished with a bang!
Last day was something else! Disregarding safety concerns, the church posted flyers all over the city to invite unbelievers. And they came… all at the same time! After initially being terrified at the prospect of being detained by police, we prayed and asked God to watch over us. That day we received the largest amount of patients–43. Four people accepted Christ, but the amazing thing was that we got done at a reasonable 5pm.
What we did next was as unexpected as it was awesome! Through a connection of a church member, we went to a city hospital (after visiting hours, mind you) and witnessed, encouraged and gave reading glasses to 46 more patients. Close to 100 souls heard the Gospel on Thursday. What a mighty God we serve!
I learned several precious lessons on this trip
First of all, people all around us are ready to accept Christ as their Savior. They long for someone to come and ask them the most important question in their life “where are you going to spend eternity?„
Second, it is amazing how God uses newness. After leading a man to Christ I talked to his pastor,and he confided in me they witnessed to him for 6
months. It took a new person sharing the same Gospel, but in a new light, to cause Alexander Viktorovich to call on Jesus!
With every outreach effort we get someone new to meet, to minister and to call a friend. Because of this medical trip, every one of the eight churches where we have been welcomed new visitors to their services afterward.
There was another situation where an older man laughed off his personal need to accept Christ. However, after talking for a while he said something that shocked me, “would you please pray for and work with my granddaughter? She really needs to turn her life around.„ This grandfather, although blind to his own condition, saw a spiritual need in his family.
Because of this outreach, many villagers in Vasiss, Tara, Kolosovka, Omsk and other places, no longer view Baptists as a sect, but as people who genuinely care for their souls.
I call this the greatest victory of all!