A Chinese Atheist Receives Christ

Midwest, USA – 1989

About two years ago, my friend and I were going door to door calling to share the gospel with my neighbors. One lady from China named Nina (pseudonym) invited us to come in. She was formerly a radiologist in China, but had moved to the Midwest recently with her husband for his new job in research. She said she was very lonely and was so happy to have some friendly visitors. We spoke slowly so she could understand our English better, and I told her how much I had enjoyed visiting China three years ago. We also shared the good news about Jesus Christ; how He died for our sins on the cross, was buried, rose again, and lives today. We shared how He wanted her to receive Him as her Savior. We asked if she had ever heard this before? She said that she had as a girl when she attended a school run by missionaries. After the communist takeover, the school was closed and the missionaries were forced to leave. We invited her to Bible class and she eagerly began to attend.

After about 6 months of faithfully hearing the Bible taught, Nina received Christ as her Savior. She was so happy and really began to grow in grace. We all were praying that her husband, Daryl, would also receive Christ as Savior. One Saturday evening, I invited them to my home to dinner to get to know them better along with a couple other people from church. We had a pleasant time together and the others left first. As Nina and Daryl were getting ready to leave, I mentioned something about how thankful I was that God loved us so much. Daryl said angrily, “How can God love us? I saw hundreds of people starve to death in China during the famines!” I softly replied that the important thing was that he had the opportunity to receive Christ now and that God wanted all men to be saved, but He wouldn’t force Himself on anyone. Nina stood there silently with a pained expression on her face. I bid them both good night. All I could sadly think about was Psalm 14:1:

The fool has said in his heart, There is no God.

About a year later, Daryl burned his legs during an accidental fire at work, and his legs became badly infected. They did not have a primary care doctor, so he continued to return to the emergency room for treatment. Nancy called me and asked if I had any suggestions? I called Dr Pete, my friend who was a Christian surgeon, and he asked Daryl to meet him at the ER where he was on staff. After examining Daryl, Dr Pete admitted him so he could receive intravenous antibiotics.  While Daryl was an inpatient, one of the elders from church visited him daily and read scripture to him and prayed with him. Nina shared that Daryl was deeply touched by the kindnesses of Dr Pete and the elder, even though he was a total stranger to them and an atheist.

In January, Nina told me that Daryl was being transferred by his employer to Miami, Florida. I was heartbroken as she seemed to be growing so much in her faith and he seemed so much more open to the gospel. But we prayed for them to be guided to a good church.

In March, Nina called me and said how much they enjoyed attending the Chinese Baptist Church! She said Daryl had something to tell me and she handed him the phone. “Miss Pam, I heard the gospel in Chinese at the church from the Chinese pastor. Now I understand what you were trying to tell me. I received Jesus Christ as my Savior! I am so thankful that my sins are forgiven and that I have a home in heaven and that I will be with Jesus forever! I am so sorry I yelled at you when you tried to tell me about God.”

I replied through my tears, “Daryl, I am so thrilled that you are now a Christian and my brother in Christ. Let’s pray together right now and thank God.” We had such a precious time in prayer together on the phone, thanking God for His wonderful grace and mercy to us.

March, 1990 – Miami, Florida

The Lord opened the door for me to visit my parents, who now live in Florida, as well as Nina and Daryl and attend church with them at the Chinese Baptist Church. For my sake, they took me to the English service rather than the Mandarin one so I could understand the service. We entered the large bright sanctuary and were greeted by friendly Chinese believers. The service began and after the opening hymn, the pastor asked for visitors to be introduced. Daryl motioned for me to stand up among the hundreds of Chinese brethren. He began, “This is Miss Pam who first gave me the gospel of Jesus Christ when I was an atheist. I hated the gospel back then and yelled at her. But she did not give up on me and now she is my sister in Christ.” My tears rolled down my cheeks as I marveled at the wonderful work of grace God had done in Daryl’s heart as well as my own!

But God commends His love toward us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. Romans 5:8-9

Reflection

Nina and Daryl returned to China

Nina and Daryl returned to China

After about a year, Daryl and Nina moved back to China. For a number of years I received a card from them every Christmas. One year, Daryl shared with me how his elderly mother also received Christ. I don’t know exactly when Daryl and Nina went to be with the Lord, but it will be wonderful to be reunited with them in heaven above some day and worship the Lord together!

Face to face with Christ my Savior, Face to face –what will it be? When with rapture I behold Him, Jesus Christ who died for me. Face to face I shall behold Him Far beyond the starry sky; Face to face in all His glory, I shall see Him by and by! –by Carrie Breck

 

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You Better Belize It! – Part 2

Dangriga, Belize – February 1990

On my nice quiet walk along the beach to breakfast this morning, I saw a man cutting grass by hand with a machete, and skinny dogs and horses wandering around loose.

Man cutting grass with a machete by the beach

Man cutting grass with a machete by the beach

After a delicious breakfast with the team, we boarded the old school bus and bumped along for 90 minutes past fragrant orange groves until we arrived in Georgetown. The medical team set up clinic in a cement block church building, and the dentists worked down the road from us. We saw people of African descent in the morning, and Mayan Indians in the afternoon. It was another slow relaxed day without too many patients. I learned much by watching Dr. Don and Dr. Joel examine the patients.

Pam holds beautiful Mayan baby girl.

Pam holds beautiful Mayan baby girl.

Dental clinic under the trees!

Dental clinic under the trees!

I stood on the bus on the way back so the bumps didn’t make my back hurt so much. We stopped for an ice cream break at an enthusiastic Texas missionary lady’s home who begged for a nurse to come work with her.

Dinner under the tent by lantern light was great with fresh fried jewel fish, mashed potatoes, noodles, fresh squeezed orange juice, hot tea, and a warm lemon meringue pie all made by the Pastor’s wife from their local produce. She is a fabulous cook! Judy and I felt uneasy when we became lost walking back in the dark to our hotel.  Loud reggae rock music blares everywhere. There were six men drinking alcohol lining the narrow second floor balcony leering at us that we had to walk past to get to our room. We quickly locked our room door and thanked the Lord for keeping us safe. Judy told me how she was beat to a pulp in her home by a robber about 20 years ago. I told her how I was mugged in 1978 in my home. Then we read our Bible together, prayed together, and went to sleep.

When I am afraid, I will trust in Thee…In God I have put my trust; I will not be afraid what man can do unto me. Psalm 53:3, 11

Wednesday – Santa Rosa

Today we held clinic in a one room thatched roof schoolhouse in the beautiful Mayan village of Santa Rosa. The Mayan people are so beautiful and friendly. The ice cold Coke was refreshing on this hot humid day which feels like it’s close to 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

We set up clinic in the thatch roofed schoolhouse.

We set up clinic in the thatch roofed schoolhouse.

Instructions in the school on how to build a VIP (Very Important Processes) odorless latrine

Instructions in the school on how to build a VIP (Very Important Processes) odorless latrine

School rules: 1. Get to school on time. 2. Strictly no chewing in class. 3. Sharpen pencils into dirtbox. 4. No indecent language in class and around schoolyard. Be neat and clean to class.

School rules: 1. Get to school on time. 2. Strictly no chewing in class. 3. Sharpen pencils into dirtbox. 4. No indecent language in class and around schoolyard. Be neat and clean to class.

We finished early so we walked through the rain forest where I saw a pig pen and numerous chickens roaming freely. I met another pen pal named Teresa for my Bible Clubbers back home. She proudly showed me the bracelet she made with the letters “The Bible” woven into it which I bought from her. She appears to know Christ as her Savior as do many of the people with whom I have shared the gospel, but they don’t seem to have had too much Bible teaching.

Teresa proudly displays her Bible bracelet she wove.

Teresa proudly displays her Bible bracelet she wove.

Our day ended with a fabulous dinner in Dangriga of freshly caught lobster tail with lemon meringue pie. Pastor R is also a lobster fisherman. I can only imagine how much work it took him to catch and clean all those lobsters for us. What a labor of love… At this rate, I don’t think I’ll lose any weight this trip!

Thursday – Hopkins Village

Both teams went to the beautiful large village of Hopkins right on the Caribbean Sea. The people are of African descent (former slaves) who speak Gariffina. Dr Joel wasn’t feeling well, so Dr Don and I worked alone today. After the clinic was finished, we all walked down to Hawaii beach and went wading in the bath water like sea.

Hopkins Village by the Caribbean Sea

Hopkins Village by the Caribbean Sea

After we returned to town, four of us ladies walked to Dangriga Hospital and a nice nurse gave us a tour. It is one story with 30 beds. Only one patient had an intravenous infusing. The maternity ward was interesting with a crib at the end of each mother’s bed and a midwife in attendance to the one patient in labor. There was one small operating room with limited surgical equipment.

Friday – Gale’s Point

After breakfast and a good devotional about the love of Christ by one of the doctors, we rode on the bus to Gale’s Point, right on the beach. We passed a new bridge the US Army and British army were building together. There is no running water in this village, so it is challenging to keep clean.

But God commendeth His love toward us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

At lunch, we met Pastor Gabriel, whose  face reflected the love of Christ! He shared his testimony with us of how he was born in Burma, but contracted smallpox at age 2. His parents left him outside the city wall to die, but missionaries found him, nursed him back to health, and raised him. At the age of 6, he received Christ as his personal Savior. He started medical school, but never finished. He has pastored churches all over the world, is 66 years old, and single. He told how he gave up his sweetheart, family, country, and career for Christ. He had a unique collection of scorpions he has collected and mounted over the years. I was fascinated by his large map of the world on his wall with colored pins where churches are located for which he prays faithfully.

Pastor Gabriel with his scorpion collection

Pastor Gabriel with his scorpion collection

After lunch, I became weak from the heat and had to lie down in the local nurse’s office, so she kindly took over checking blood pressures for me. Dr Joel brought me juice to drink and a basin of cool water so I could sponge down my face and arms. I think I’m getting dehydrated from the heat.

After dinner, Judy and I went to bed early, dreaming of sleeping in on Saturday, our one day to relax. But it was not to be. The hotel reggae band started playing under our bedroom at 10 p.m. and went full blast until 4 a.m. It was so loud that my bed vibrated. Even my pillow wrapped tightly around my bed didn’t block out the blast. I was so relieved when they finally quit.

Dangriga – Saturday

We were going to take a boat ride to one of the islands, but it’s raining and the water is too rough. I walked alone through town and shopped for a few souvenirs on my way to Inn on the beach. Dr Pete took the bus down from Belmopan to visit the team for the weekend. Judy was thrilled to see him as they look forward to their May 11 wedding!

Judy and I were relaxing on the quiet beach when two men came up to us and asked if we wanted to “get high”. We quickly replied “No”, picked up our towels, and walked back to the Inn. We thanked God for His protection once again. We were rather shocked at the boldness of the men.

29 Pretty beach

Beautiful beach where men boldly tried to sell us drugs.

This evening, 15 team members who remained in town for the weekend, dressed up and went to dinner at the Inn. We had fun chatting while we enjoyed a fabulous fresh seafood dinner. The evening concluded with the town people demonstrating their traditional folk dances from Africa in full costumes.

Reflection

So ended my first week of medical missions in Belize. It was a much slower pace and much hotter than Honduras which was my only other mission trip for comparison. It was definitely easier to work in English without a translator. Next post I will conclude with memories of our second week in Big Creek, the southern part of the country.

 

 

 

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A Chinese Atheist Receives Christ

Midwest, USA – 1989

About two years ago, my friend and I were going door to door calling to share the gospel with my neighbors. One lady from China named Nina (pseudonym) invited us to come in. She was formerly a radiologist in China, but had moved to the Midwest recently with her husband for his new job in research. She said she was very lonely and was so happy to have some friendly visitors. We spoke slowly so she could understand our English better, and I told her how much I had enjoyed visiting China three years ago. We also shared the good news about Jesus Christ; how He died for our sins on the cross, was buried, rose again, and lives today. We shared how He wanted her to receive Him as her Savior. We asked if she had ever heard this before? She said she had as a girl when she attended a school run by missionaries. After the communist takeover, the school was closed and the missionaries were forced to leave. We invited her to Bible class and she eagerly began to attend.

After about 6 months of faithfully hearing the Bible taught, Nina received Christ as her Savior. She was so happy and really began to grow in grace. We all were praying that her husband, Daryl, would also receive Christ as Savior. One Saturday evening, I invited them to my home to dinner to get to know them better along with a couple other people from church. We had a pleasant time together and the others left first. As Nina and Daryl were getting ready to leave, I mentioned something about how thankful I was that God loved us so much. Daryl said angrily, “How can God love us? I saw hundreds of people starve to death in China during the famines!” I softly replied that the important thing was that he had the opportunity to receive Christ now and that God wanted all men to be saved, but He wouldn’t force Himself on anyone. Nina stood there silently with a pained expression on her face. I bid them both good night. All I could sadly think about was Psalm 14:1:

The fool has said in his heart, There is no God.

About a year later, Daryl burned his legs during an accidental fire at work, and his legs became badly infected. They did not have a primary care doctor, so he continued to return to the emergency room for treatment. Nancy called me and asked if I had any suggestions? I called Dr Pete, my friend who was a Christian surgeon, and he asked Daryl to meet him at the ER where he was on staff. After examining Daryl, Dr Pete admitted him so he could receive intravenous antibiotics.  While Daryl was an inpatient, one of the elders from church visited him daily and read scripture to him and prayed with him. Nina shared that Daryl was deeply touched by the kindnesses of Dr Pete and the elder, even though he was a total stranger to them and an atheist.

In January, Nina told me that Daryl was being transferred by his employer to Miami, Florida. I was heartbroken as she seemed to be growing so much in her faith and he seemed so much more open to the gospel. But we prayed for them to be guided to a good church.

In March, Nina called me and said how much they enjoyed attending the Chinese Baptist Church! She said Daryl had something to tell me and she handed him the phone. “Miss Pam, I heard the gospel in Chinese at the church from the Chinese pastor. Now I understand what you were trying to tell me. I received Jesus Christ as my Savior! I am so thankful that my sins are forgiven and that I have a home in heaven and that I will be with Jesus forever! I am so sorry I yelled at you when you tried to tell me about God.”

I replied through my tears, “Daryl, I am so thrilled that you are now a Christian and my brother in Christ. Let’s pray together right now and thank God.” We had such a precious time in prayer together on the phone, thanking God for His wonderful grace and mercy to us.

March, 1990 – Miami, Florida

The Lord opened the door for me to visit my parents, who now live in Florida, as well as Nina and Daryl and attend church with them at the Chinese Baptist Church. For my sake, they took me to the English service rather than the Mandarin one so I could understand the service. We entered the large bright sanctuary and were greeted by friendly Chinese believers. The service began and after the opening hymn, the pastor asked for visitors to be introduced. Daryl motioned for me to stand up among the hundreds of Chinese brethren. He began, “This is Miss Pam who first gave me the gospel of Jesus Christ when I was an atheist. I hated the gospel back then and yelled at her. But she did not give up on me and now she is my sister in Christ.” My tears rolled down my cheeks as I marveled at the wonderful work of grace God had done in Daryl’s heart as well as my own!

But God commends His love toward us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. Romans 5:8-9

Reflection

Nina and Daryl returned to China

Nina and Daryl returned to China

After about a year, Daryl and Nina moved back to China. For a number of years I received a card from them every Christmas. One year, Daryl shared with me how his elderly mother also received Christ. I don’t know exactly when Daryl and Nina went to be with the Lord, but it will be wonderful to be reunited with them in heaven above some day and worship the Lord together!

Face to face with Christ my Savior, Face to face –what will it be? When with rapture I behold Him, Jesus Christ who died for me. Face to face I shall behold Him Far beyond the starry sky; Face to face in all His glory, I shall see Him by and by! –by Carrie Breck