Tell the Story

Many times when you teach, people do not understand some words. Sometimes using words to explain other words does not work. They still will not understand the word. You must use stories or other illustrations to explain the word. Sometimes stories make words better understood. Example: Recently, we were talking about “proud” and “humble.” The deaf thought proud meant rich and humble meant poor. To better help them to understand, I used a true story that happened to me. A poor lady was standing in line in a local grocery store. She did not like standing in line, so she pushed me and my cart out of the way and went first. She was proud but poor. Another lady who obviously was rich was humble and let us go first.

Stories and illustrations will explain words when words, words, words will not explain anything. When using stories to explain words, remember:

1. Bible stories are an excellent way to explain Bible teachings. You can explain God’s attributes by using stories. For example, show God’s power, by telling the story of creation. Show God’s love by telling the story of Jesus dying on the cross for our sins.

2. Bible stories can explain other doctrines. For example, faith can be explained with the story of Jesus healing the nobleman’s son. The nobleman obeyed Jesus by faith and the son was healed. Use stories and illustrations to show the meaning of the doctrine.

3. Other types of stories can also help in explaining doctrines and hard words in the Bible. In the Philippines, the word “mercy” is often misunderstood as meaning to beg. (Beggars will say the word “mercy” when asking for money.) To explain mercy, I tell the story of a bad boy disobeying his mother and breaking a vase. Instead of punishing, she shows mercy and forgives him. Many other words can be explained by using simple stories to show an example of the word.

Use stories to explain hard words and ideas.

The Lord Has Led Me All The Way

I thank God that the Lord has led me to preach to the Deaf from 1975 to now. He led me to Bible School at Tennessee Temple Schools from 1971 to 1975. He led me to pastor in full-time service from 1975 to 1998 (20 years) in five different churches: Texas (4 years) – Colorado (2 years) – Alabama (one year), Ohio (1 year) – Pennsylvania (12 years). Before Pennsylvania, He then led me to be a Missionary at the Bill Rice Ranch (3 years). After that, I prayed to God what He wanted me to do. He led me to Silent Word Ministries, where I have served 21 years. I praise Him that His will is perfect for my life as I continue to serve Him traveling to other countries and in USA for my preaching. These many years the Lord has led me all the way. I thank God that I have seen deaf people saved in all these ministries. My heart is still heavily burdened for lost Deaf souls. I never lost my burden. These past 13 years it has been lonely since my wife Debbie went to Heaven. My desire is still to preach and reach lost deaf souls. My health is well, my body is strong, my heart is full, and my hands still sign. I can still preach. I love to preach to the Deaf World for the Lord. My goal is serve until I die and retire in Heaven.

Contact: Allen

I CAN, I CAN, I KNOW I CAN!

Many ask why I love trains and why I preach about being on the right track. Many years ago I fell in love with the story of “The Little Engine That Could.” The Little Engine was asked to pull a heavy load up a big hill. As he started, he began to say, “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.” As he got near the top of the hill, he had to pull very hard. He continued to say, “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.” Finally, he went over the hill and began to say, “I thought I could, I thought I could.” He did it!

I copied the words of the train for my life and my ministry. “I can… I can… I can… I know I can!” The title of my articles is “The Deaf Can.” Like The Little Engine That Could, I have learned to keep going, and going, and going no matter what happens. I can, and so can you! When you feel you can’t, sign, “I can… I can… I know I can! Keep going, and going, and going, and going and stay on track!

* “The Little Engine That Could,” 1920, but the story is much older.

“The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her.” – Proverbs 31:11

How does this happen? Today in the world it is hard to find people whom you can trust. People do not keep their promises. They say one thing and live another way. Marriages are falling apart because the husband and wife cannot trust each other. How can you become a woman who shows that her husband can trust her? There are some simple things that you can do. First, keep your home clean and in order. Cook good meals for your family. Make your husband’s time at home enjoyable. Second, use your time wisely. Don’t waste your time by playing games on your phone or computer. If you only have a few hours, plan your time wisely. Use your money wisely. Buy groceries that are good for you, not junk food. Don’t take that money for food and go buy clothing. Use your money wisely. Third, be a good listener. When your husband is down or feels burdened, give him time to share with you. Encourage him when he shares with you (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10). Then pray for him. Don’t share this information with anyone else. Many husbands go off to work to provide for their wife and family. The wife must do her part. She should do her part at home to make it a happy place for all to enjoy. A godly example of a husband taking care of his wife is Boaz and Ruth. Boaz trusted Ruth because he saw her faithfulness to her mother-in-law. She was a hard worker, and she was kind. What a thrill it is to see a husband and wife work together. They not only work together, but they also trust each other as a team. Together – Everyone – Achieves – More. Do your best to please the Lord in how you seek to do good for your husband and family.

“Good, better, best. I want to keep trying until my good is better, and my better is best.”

Rich or Poor?

When John the Baptist was in prison (because of confronting King Herod for his sin) and heard about the works Jesus had done, he sent two of his disciples to Jesus to ask if He was the One “that should come, or do we look for another?” (Matthew 11:3). Jesus sent the disciples back with the response that they should show John the things that they had seen and heard. And what were the wonderful things? The blind received their sight, and the lame could walk. The deaf could hear, and dead were raised up to new life! What amazing miracles that only God, only the Messiah could do.

But then Jesus added another proof that puzzled me. He said, “the poor have the gospel preached to them” (Matthew 11:5). How could that be a proof that Jesus was the Messiah, the Christ? I found that Isaiah had written about 700 years before that the Messiah would be anointed “to preach good tidings unto the meek (humble, lowly, poor, needy).” The Scribes and Pharisees often overlooked and despised the poor because of their lack of knowledge and education, but Jesus came to minister to them. This was a sign He was the Messiah. Today we must continue to reach out to the poor and lowly as ones who need a Savior, a hope, a peace, and everlasting life.

But what about the rich? What about those of high position, those high in government, in fame, in society? Jon and I recently met a lady who seemed to be of wealth, of position in society and business, who lived in the “rich area” of town. Truthfully, I was a little intimidated, until the Lord reminded me He did not come for the rich or the poor. He came for sinners, all of us. All must hear the Gospel. Nicodemus, a man of great learning and influence, came to Jesus, and Jesus told him, “Ye must be born again” (John 3:7). Someone told Joseph of Arimathaea about Christ, and this rich man believed in and followed Him (Mark 15:43-46). Lydia (Acts 16:14) was apparently a successful businesswoman who opened her heart to the Lord after hearing Paul preach. And because of Paul’s bonds, even those in the palace heard of Christ.

Follow Christ’s example and seek to bring lost sinners (rich or poor) to Christ (Luke 19:10).

Wonderful Words of Life

Usually, when asked how I am doing, I reply, “Oh, I’m good,” even though I may not be doing so well. I believe that reply comes because of my personality type and because there are so many suffering people. Recently, however, in a meeting in a local church, I sat down by a long-time friend. When she asked how I was doing, I opened up to tell her I was feeling down, physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. I shared that I felt part of it was caused by several straight days of rain and no sunshine. She smiled sweetly and squeezed my hands in encouragement, which caused me to smile and to feel better. A few days later a beautiful potted plant of bright yellow daisies appeared on my doorstep. The card read, “Until the sun comes out again.” Even though it wasn’t signed, I knew it was from my friend with whom I had shared by woes. Those words and kind deed certainly encouraged me and lifted me up, physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.

Timely-Encouraging-Pleasant

The words were timely. “A word spoken in due season (at the right time), how good is it!” (Proverbs 15:23)!

The words were encouraging. “”Heaviness in the heart…maketh it stoop: but a good word maketh it glad” (Proverbs 12:25).
The words were pleasant. “Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones” (Proverbs 16:24).

Interestingly, that morning when the daisies arrived, I was reading a devotional about words of encouragement and was challenged by these statements: ”Our words of encouragement can greatly help others.” “What opportunities do I have to give someone the words of encouragement they need?” I asked the Lord to keep me alert to the needs of others and to give wisdom to offer words of encouragement and to do kind deeds. Every day these opportunities abound. My part is to genuinely listen, then respond with words that are timely, encouraging, and pleasant.

Words of Encouragement

May I offer a list of encouraging words that have helped me and that I have learned to genuinely offer others?

Let me help you. – I’m thankful for you.
I forgive you. – You are special to me.
I’m proud of you. – I am praying for you.
I love you. – I am here for you.
I care. – Thank you! – I am sorry.

Wonderful Words of Life

Wonderful words were spoken by our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. They are timely, encouraging, and pleasant. We can hear them every day by listening through the pages of His Word.

“As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you.”– John 15:9

“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” – Matthew 11:28

“I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh to the Father, but by me.” – John 14:6

“Let not your heart by troubled… I go to prepare a place for you… I will come again,  and receive you unto myself;
that where I am, there ye may be also.”  – John 14:1-3

“Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” – John 8:11

“And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish…” – John 10:28

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life.” – John 3:16

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace…be of good cheer.” – John 16:33

“It is the spirit that quickeneth… the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” –John 6:63

“Wonderful Words of Life”
by Phillip P Bliss – 1874

Sing them over again to me,
Wonderful words of life,
Let me more of their beauty see,
Wonderful words of life;
Words of life and beauty
Teach me faith and duty.

Beautiful words, wonderful words,
Wonderful words of life;
Beautiful words, wonderful words,
Wonderful words of life.

“Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord,my strength, and my redeemer.”– Psalms 19:14

Like my friend, and the example of the Lord, let’s be alert to the needs of those around us and respond with wonderful words of life that are timely, encouraging, and pleasant.

This is written because I care…

The Importance of Meaning

Interpreting is essentially explaining, giving the meaning, and not just signing words. Interpreting is a learned skill. There are several levels of processing the interpretation:

Words (Lexical) – This is basically signing the words you hear. Sometimes a particular word is important. Example: If the word “justify” is the topic of a sermon, is used many times in that sermon, or appears in a visual presentation, it may be important to sign or spell that word more often.

Phrases (Phrasal) – Signing phrase by phrase is used especially when there is a particularly important phrase. The emphasis is on the phrase, such as in, “The just shall live by faith.” The phrase can be signed exactly as heard, and afterward interpreted for clarity, as needed.

Sentences (Sentential) – Signing sentence by sentence emphasizes small chunks of information. As a negative example here, some Deaf may say, “I understand what was signed, but what was the meaning?”

Message (Textual) – Reprocessing spoken words or signs to match the language expectations of the recipient. Sign language, “Me finish me, zoom,” may be spoken as “I’m out of here,” “I’ve had enough,” or something else, depending on context. English, “Amazing grace, how sweet the sound…” could be signed, “Me awful sinner. Worthless. God give-me blessing. Awesome.”

Know the language and needs of the person to whom you are signing or voicing. Listen/watch for the meaning and sign for understanding. The message is often, but not always, more important than the words. Seeing understanding in the eyes of a Deaf person will change your interpretation forever! The interpreting miracle is knowing how and when to do the right thing!

“We’ve always done it that way.”

This is a saying that we often hear, but it is something that tells me that a ministry is either dying or simply coasting. Coasting is normally not uphill, but downhill! I want to encourage you to look at your Deaf ministry with a fresh look. What could be done differently so that more Deaf people could be reached with the Gospel? Let me offer a few suggestions. First, remember that Deaf people are extremely visual. They see things and details that Hearing people normally overlook. When you are printing something for them to have in their hand, make sure it is visually appealing. If you are using PowerPoint, or a visual illustration, make sure it is sharp! Second, when you are dependent upon your eyes to take in information, it is very taxing physically. Don’t make your teaching times too long, or the Deaf you are trying to reach will experience a natural tendency to become drowsy. Make your teaching times a bit shorter than you normally would. Mix in times of interaction among the people in your class. This will offer them some variety and will help keep their attention much better. Third, remember that while Hearing people are stimulated by big words with multiple meanings, these mean nothing to the Deaf. However, being a bit creative with how you Sign something that can draw them into the deeper meaning of the word that is being used in the lesson or message. Don’t become lazy and give a generic Sign for a word that does not mean what the normal Sign means. Do your homework and find out what the word really means so you can interpret it accurately for the Deaf. If you need to, ask Deaf after the lesson if they understood it clearly. Make sure they understand. Re-teach those words you know they might have missed. If they did not understand, take the time to discuss the best way to Sign the concept with them. The Deaf are great teachers … if you allow them to have a part. I hope these are helpful hints.

“Two Things You Should Do”

Psalm One tells how you can be blessed in life. Three things that you should NOT do are listed (vs. 1). You should not walk, stand, or sit in the way (advice) of sinners. There are two other things you SHOULD do (vs.2). “But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.” You should love God’s Word and meditate on it.

What do you love? What do you delight in? What do you think about? When I was a little boy, I delighted in finding turtles after hard rains. I would hunt them, play with them, and then turn them loose. As a teenager, I delighted in working on my first car. I enjoyed thinking about and working on old cars. When I became a father, I delighted in sailing on our small sailboat with our four children and their dog “JJ.” Thinking about sailing still makes me smile. That was my delight!

Psalm One tells that you should delight in or love God’s Holy Word, the Bible. Your first step is to love God’s Word. Your second step is to meditate on God’s Word day and night. Biblical meditation means that you actively think on verses, stories, and principles found in the Bible. It does not mean that you sit quietly with your mind empty. It means that you prayerfully think of how God’s Word guides you to make right decisions. What is your delight?

So… if you want a happy, blessed life, always delight in God and His Word! Read and memorize God’s Word so you can meditate on Bible principles any time and all the time – RC. These are two ways that you can be blessed!

What’s Up

What’s Up? Sympathies to SWM friend, Sharon Bordean, Liberty Baptist Church of the Deaf, Columbus, Ohio, on the passing of her mother, Doris Jayne Regas (87) of Uniontown, Ohio. Following a period of declining health, she passed away on February 19, 2019. Her children describe her as Godly, encouraging, positive, compassionate, grateful, loving, family-oriented, selfless, a prayer warrior and a friend to all. Above all, the legacy Doris left was her commitment to her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. She will be missed by many.

What’s Up? Sympathies to the family of Helen Maxine Radebaugh (94) of Marion, Ohio, who passed away on February 26, 2019. She was the mother of six sons, one of those being Chris who, along with his wife, Lucinda, are missionaries to the deaf in Johannesburg, South Africa, and dear friends of Silent Word Ministries. Helen was a lifelong homemaker and served in many capacities at her church, Calvary Bible Baptist. She will be missed by her children, 22 grandchildren and 42 great-grandchildren.

What’s Up? “Family is important,” a statement made by Ted Camp after meeting a family member, Howard Couch, whom he hadn’t seen in over 40 years. In early years Ted gave him a Gospel witness, and through a series of major events, Howard remembered and accepted Christ as his Savior. He and his wife, Carolyn, recently visited with Ted in his local church.

What’s Up? SWM will conduct its annual Trenton community Sign Language class, April 15-19. The class helps raise deaf awareness and gives local professionals and businesses, friends, and family the opportunity to learn enough Sign Language to better communicate with and meet the needs of local deaf people. The class is professionally taught on the beginner level. Contact the office by clicking here.  Phone: 706-657-8000.

What’s Up? Update! Deaf Missionary Ronnie Rice is slowly improving in his health. His hope is to soon be able to get back on the road traveling and preaching. Continued prayers are needed.

What’s Up? Happy 60th birthday, March 4, to Dr. Fred Adams, founder of Sword Deaf Ministries, Clinton, Tennessee. His three sons treated him to a special lunch.

What’s Up? Sympathies to the family of deaf friend, Barbara Ellen Johnson (57), Dyer, Indiana, who passed away on January 18, 2019, after a long battle with cancer. Barbara attended the South Dakota School for the Deaf in Sioux Falls. After graduating from high school, she attended Temple Deaf Bible College in Peoria, Illinois. Upon graduation from college, she moved to Rochester, NY. Between those two locations, she made many long-lasting friends who would later become a great support as she faced her battle with cancer. She had a sweet and loving spirit and was greatly enjoyed by those she met and those caring for her. She enjoyed attending the Deaf Baptist Ladies Retreat and was a great encouragement to many. She is missed!

What’s Up? Pastor James Liebrecht has been called as the new pastor to the deaf at Capitol City Baptist Church, Holt, Michigan. He is deaf himself. He and his wife, Jenny, are graduates of Hyles Anderson University. They have four children. Former deaf pastor, Al Cooper, served for 45 years. He feels it is time for a younger man to carry the work forward. He and his wife, Dolly, will remain involved in the ministry.

What’s Up? Meet some new missionaries to the deaf, Nathan & Deanna Hill (both deaf) and their four children, Harvest Deaf Ministries. They are available for deputation meetings, revivals, retreats, youth rallies, and special deaf events.

What’s Up? Harvest Deaf Ministries, Dr. Reggie Rempel, Ringgold, Georgia, will conduct its 18th annual missions conference, April 10 – 14. There will be speakers from Australia, The Dominican Republic, and India. They extend a warm welcome to attend these services.

What’s Up? SWM staff and friends surprised Ted & Carlene Camp with a party to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary. They were married on December 28, 1958. The party took place after SWM’s annual board meeting on February 10, 2019. Many attended!

What’s Up? Master’s Hands Bible Church for the Deaf (Baptist) in Denver, CO, is seeking pulpit supply and references for qualified applicants for the pastorate. Pastor Otto Albrecht (wife Lori) contracted Parkinson’s Disease after 32 years of ministry.

What’s Up? The 25th anniversary celebration and graduation of Harvest Deaf Bible College, Dr. Reggie Rempel, will be May 3 – 5, 2019. This is a great time for alumni to visit and enjoy the fellowship with former teachers and students. Special guest speakers includes Dr. Don Sisk, Pastor Mike Frazier, and Robert Gunter. Visit www.harvestdeaf.org 

What’s Up? Crystal White, announces the 8th annual Deaf Women’s Conference, April 26 & 27, at Willo-Hill Baptist Church, 4200 State Route 306, Willoughby, Ohio. Special guest speaker will be SWM’s Carlene Camp. Contact Crystal for details: Church phone: 440-951-2020

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