Be Patient – Part 2

We recently had a camp for the deaf. I was reminded of one of our deaf ladies named Diana. She came to our church but did not know many signs. She was also a bit slow. Some of the workers tried to get her saved quickly. But she just could not understand. We decided to take the slow and steady approach. We were patient and taught her as slowly as she needed to be taught. Very slowly she began to understand. Five years later, she was saved. The worker from her church told me she was still faithful to church. She understood because we were patient.

Sometimes people need us not to hurry. Take your time and be patient when teaching them.

1. Do not hurry. I have seen teachers become upset and shout at deaf people who did not understand. Be patient. Help them at their own level of understanding. Help them at their own learning pace. Help them to clearly understand.

2. Be sure they understand before continuing. I was in a class one time when the teacher was teaching about the miracles of Christ. She signed “miracle.” Many of the deaf begin to ask each other, what meant miracle. They asked the teacher what miracle meant? She ignored them and continued teaching. They could not understand the lesson until “miracle” was explained. It is very important to stop and explain what they do not understand. When they understand it, continue.

3. Try different methods and approaches to teaching the lesson. Recently I have been teaching simple doctrines to the deaf here. I had been using an outline method, but they were not remembering the lesson well. I changed the method I was using, and they understood and remembered the lessons much better. (I am now using a method that has a picture, the title and a verse. If you are interested, write me and I will send an example.)

Be patient. You will reap in due season (Gal. 6:9).
Wait, wait, and wait until they understand.

Eastern Europe: Deaf People Need the Gospel

Deaf – Deaf – Deaf! Bucharest, the capital of Romania, with over 2 million people, has many Deaf people needing Christ. We are not aware of a Baptist church reaching out to the Deaf in this city. Ploiești, a nearby city of a quarter of a million people, has a group of 10-15 Christian Deaf people with no church and no interpreter or preacher. SWMI needs a missionary there! All of Romania is the same, but it is even worse in Bulgaria, south of Romania. In Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, we know of only one deaf couple who knows Christ. Who will reach them? SWMI needs a missionary there! Also we do not know of even one deaf Christian in all of Greece, south of Bulgaria. There are very few missionaries reaching the Deaf. Laborers are greatly needed. SWMI is not just looking for someone who knows Sign Language! We are looking for someone who has a heart for the lost Deaf! We are seeking men who love God’s Word and desire to preach it! SWMI is looking for true disciples of Christ, willing to deny themselves and follow Christ all the way to deaf people in Eastern Europe!

CHALLENGE! Europe is a mission field! SWMI’s goal is to evangelize and train deaf men to reach these countries. Our first missionary to the Deaf in Romania plans to be on the field in November. Others are committed and preparing to form a team there. Does God want you to join this new SWMI Eastern European mission team? Also, watch for more details about the upcoming SWMI team to the DeafNation World Expo in Las Vegas (2020). Contact me if you are interested in either of these opportunities. Contact David by clicking here.

“Let the redeemed of the Lord say so…” – Psa. 107:2

I have been redeemed (saved) and I want to say so (tell you). “When I graduated from PA School for the Deaf in 1967, I returned home and worked a job. I faithfully went to church with my family every Sunday and Wednesday. There was no interpreter. I believed in God only. I loved to play on the church softball team against other churches. One pastor saw I was deaf, he became burdened for my soul. He had an evangelist from the Bill Rice Ranch come to preach a revival. The pastor invited me to come to the revival because the evangelist knew sign language. I went to the church revival. Evangelist Bill Rice III preached and his wife, Mary, interpreted. This was the first time I had an interpreter in church. I watched her sign as he preached. After the service, Mary asked me, “Do you have Jesus in your heart?” I said “No.” I never heard about Jesus coming into a heart. The evangelist explained to me how Jesus could live in my heart. I understood and wanted Jesus to live in my heart. We prayed together. I got saved.

Later, I found a favorite verse. Isaiah 29:18, “And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book…” In that day I will hear, because I was saved in this day. Now, I have a burden to also give the Gospel to the Deaf so they can let others know they are saved. In that day the Deaf shall hear the words of the book without an interpreter. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so!

The Deaf Can Have A Changed Life

I have visited several jails and prisons. Can a person in prison change his life and have a good testimony? Many Deaf prisoners are studying the SWM Deaf Bible Institute program. Can God change the lives of prisoners? I visited a prison in Orlando, Florida. I led a Deaf man named Anthony to the Lord. He was sentenced to 15 years, but now he has eternal life in Heaven. Later he brought five other deaf prisoners to us to be saved. I witnessed to them and three were saved. In prison, Anthony and his friends have had a changed life. They help others to also be saved.

I thought of Paul and Silas in prison for preaching the Gospel (Acts 16:23-34). The jailor put their feet into stocks (blocks of wood) and fastened them so they could not escape. Paul and Silas did not complain. About midnight they begin to pray and sing. Other prisoners heard them praying and singing. Something strange happened. An earthquake shook the prison and all jail doors opened. They could escape. The jailor knew if the prisoners escaped, he would lose his life. In darkness he could not see them. He thought all the prisoners had escaped. As he took his sword to kill himself, he heard a voice, “Do thyself no harm: for we are all here.” He then saw the prisoners. He fell down before Paul and Silas and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” Paul said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” God saved him and his family. Their lives were changed. God changed Anthony, God changed the jailor and God can change you (2 Cor. 5:17). The Deaf can be changed!

“She worketh willingly with her hands…” – Proverbs 31:13

I am grateful for the godly women God has placed in my life. When I was born, my parents lived in the servant quarters on my grandparents’ farm. We moved to their present home when I was young, but I have always had a love for the farm. My grandmother was a hard worker. She was always busy milking cows by hand, and feeding them. She also took care of the chickens. Inside their house there was a room where she had a quilt rack, with a quilt in progress stretched across it. In her “free time,” she was in that room, sewing on the quilt. My grandmother loved the Lord and did her best to be a positive helpmate for her husband. My mother stayed home and raised her four girls (each of us are two-years apart in age). As we grew older, she became a cook at our church camp. She loved cooking and serving others. It was at that camp that I understood my need for Jesus as my Savior. There I prayed and accepted Jesus to forgive my sins. I knew that only Jesus could forgive my sins and give me a home in Heaven.

Later, the Lord blessed me with a wonderful husband – Jim. God then blessed us with four children. One boy and three girls. It is a joy to watch our three daughters and daughter-in-law serve others with kindness. They have a willing heart attitude and they show it in their actions. Our daughters daily care for their children (our ten grandchildren), and their husbands. This is a full-time job! Our daughter-in-law is a nurse who cares for people who are hurting, and she doesn’t even know them! All these precious ladies are working willingly with their hearts and hands. They share Jesus with many others daily. What their hands find to do, they do it!
Jesus willingly opened His heart, arms and hands for you on the cross. We should willingly open our hearts, arms, and hands to share Jesus with others. “She worketh willingly with her hands.” So should we!

Where Are You Looking?

How far can you turn your head? Science tells us that many owls can turn their heads up to 270 degrees in each direction, but humans only turn their heads 80 to 110 degrees to the left or right. (After working on the computer for a long time, my head turn is even more limited than that!) Because of our head movement, we can look straight ahead, to the left, the right, or many directions in between. The direction we turn our face determines what we see.

David said, “I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance and my God” (Psalm 43:5). Countenance is the face, or “the part that turns.” David spoke of praising God who made his countenance healthy. He could smile. His face could shine. He could look to the future with peace. However, this was not because everything was great in his life. The previous part of the verse says, “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me?” David questioned his own thoughts and emotions. Why was he “cast down,” sad, and despairing? Why was he weak and burdened down? Like David, we often become discouraged when we see the things happening in the world around us, focus on the hard things happening in us, or think about the unfair things happening to us. It is easy to get “cast down.”

Can we, like David, change our despair to praise? In A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23, Phillip Keller said that a sheep is “cast” down when it is turned over on its back and cannot get up. It lies there helpless and frightened. It wildly moves its legs trying to get up, but it is unsuccessful. It becomes an easy meal for its enemy. It has only one hope – the shepherd. David was cast down and disquieted (Psalm 42:5,11; 43:5). He was discouraged and burdened. He had only one hope – the Shepherd. He said, “Hope in God.” Hope means to wait, be patient, and trust. When weak, discouraged, and feeling defeated, many Christians turn the wrong way and look for help from friends, previous experiences, or even the world. Our only true hope is to turn to God and trust Him. When we look to Him, He will change our despair to faith, our sadness to joy, and our discouragement to praise.

We Need One Another

From the beginning of Creation, to this very day, it is evident that we humans need each other. We need relationships. We need community. In the Garden of Eden this truth was made evident when the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man (Adam) should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him” (Gen. 2:18). Adam had the animals, which he named and enjoyed, surrounding him. He also had the LORD God with whom to fellowship, yet something was missing. Adam needed someone with skin on, someone like himself, someone with whom he could have a relationship. God filled that need when He created Eve. “And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam… and he took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man” (Gen. 2:22). Perhaps Adam, when he saw Eve, said, “Wow, just what I need! Thank You, LORD God.” This was the beginning of human relationships. The LORD God knows exactly what we need.

Relationship

Relationship, what does that mean? Webster’s dictionary defines it as a connection between persons by blood or marriage; kinship; friendship; a natural association. In order to grow and flourish, we rely on one another. We need relationships. “Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up” (Eccl. 4:9,10). In our churches, in our families, on the job, in our community, in our friendships, and other associations, a right relationship will be evident and profitable for all involved. (Read Col. 3:12-15.)

As Christians, what should our relationships with one another look like? The Bible describes it:

1. Love One Another – “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another” (John 13:34). “For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another” (1 John 3:11).

2. Accept One Another – “Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God” (Rom.15:7). Accept people no matter their race, handicap, education, personality or looks. Some Christians shun or ignore people. This is not right. All Christians are in the same family with God. We need to learn to accept other people.

3. Consider One Another – “And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works” (Heb.10:24). Christians should be thoughtful of one another. Treat others as you want them to treat you.

4. Counsel One Another – “But exhort (correct or counsel) one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin” (Heb.3:13). Exhorting means to counsel and advise others to do right. Do not become a judge, but counsel in love.

5. Be Kind One to Another – “And be ye kind one to another...” (Eph. 4:32). It is never right to be rude to other people, never. Have you ever been hurt with an unkind action or word? The word “kind” means to be good and gentle to others. Christians are to be kind to one another.

6. Be Patient With One Another – “With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering (patience), forbearing one another in love” (Eph. 4:2). No matter what happens, be patient with other Christians.

7. Forgive One Another – “And be ye …forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you” (Eph. 4:32). Christians should learn to quickly forgive and stay friends. Do not stay angry. Quickly forgive. Learn to say, “I am sorry, forgive me.”

8. Be Friendly to One Another – “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love…” (Rom. 12:10). The word “affection” means to be friendly and to like one another. It is important to love one another.

9. Honor One Another – “Be kind; in honour preferring one another” (Rom. 12:10). Be happy for others when they are blessed of God. Rejoice with them that rejoice. Do not envy others (I Thess. 5:13).

10. Serve One Another – “For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another” (Gal. 5:13). Christians are to serve one another with love.

We need one another. The key to fulfillment is right relationships. How are your relationships? Do they need development? Do they need some repairs? Now is the time to make changes. Don’t wait too late.

2 Corinthians 3:2-4 Love and Comfort One Another May we never leave someone to suffer alone.– Ted Camp

This is written because I care…Carlene

Your Attitude Is Showing

“Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.” – Philippians 2:3-5

Attitude influences everything you do! It seems in the field of interpreting there is a lot of pride and strife (seeking to look better than others). Other people can clearly see your attitude. Your attitude shows! Bad reasons to interpret include interpreting for praise from others, for self-gratification, because of pride, to be superior to the people we serve, to be a “control freak” (making decisions for other people) and more. But, interpreters are servants!

Recently I heard a person in leadership (not an interpreter) talk about US (the leadership team) and THEM (the followers). He seemed to think he was above and separate from the people he was supposed to serve. The “us vs. them” attitude is very dangerous in the field of interpreting.

Would You Rather” questions reveal values and attitude. In many of our meetings with large Deaf groups, I have asked, “Would you rather have a highly skilled interpreter who does NOT love Deaf people, or a medium skilled interpreter who loves the Deaf?” The answer is almost 100% for the interpreter who loves the Deaf! Naturally, interpreters should always be learning and improving their skills. Never forget that your attitude is showing.

Interpreter, seek the best for the people you serve. Never argue or disagree in front of them. Defer to more skilled interpreters. Strive to give clear understanding in your interpretation. Do what is necessary, even if it makes you look bad. Serve rather than be served. Remember that your attitude is showing. “Do all things without murmurings (criticizing) and disputings (arguing)” (Phil 2:14), and the results may surprise you.

“Let the redeemed of the LORD say so.”– Psalm 107:2

Let me share with you what I shared with my family this past Easter. We had three of our children and their families over to celebrate Easter on the Saturday before. All ten grandchildren were there at one time. This makes for a party, regardless of why we are meeting! As I was thinking about the significance of the resurrection of Christ and what it meant to me, I thought about my own testimony I have shared it thousands of times over the past 40 years, but I could not recall a time that I had shared it with our grandchildren. I quickly put together some pictures I knew would hold their attention. Then I presented my Easter story. I told them. “At the age of six, I broke off a number of flowers at our window box. As I finished up the fun job, I admired my work. My mother came around the corner. Her facial expression told me that there was going to be a spanking. Then she asked if I had broken off “her” beautiful flowers? I looked at her with an angel’s face, and said, “No.” I realized for the first time in my life that I was a liar. Later that summer (I was six-years-old), I heard the precious story of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection again. This time, it was not a story for others. I saw Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection as payment for my personal sin of lying. That day, I knelt beside my parent’s bed with my mother at my side, and I asked Jesus to become my Savior. From that day until today, I have never doubted the seriousness of my decision. I believe that as a six-year-old boy, I became a child of God, and I will be in Heaven when I die! Our grandchildren listened to my whole story. When I finished, one of our grandsons, who is six years old, told me that he had asked Jesus to become his Savior earlier that week! What a thrill to see the power of Jesus’ payment for both our sins at the age of six.” Let the redeemed of the Lord say so!

“Who is Blessed?”

Psalm One says that a “blessed” person is one who does NOT walk, stand, or sit in the way of sinners. The blessed person delights in and meditates on God’s Word day and night. But, what is a blessed person like? Verse three says, “And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither, and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.” I remember my Grandfather’s farm in Marion County, Tennessee. “Poppa” grew much food on “bottom-land” along the Sequatchie River. Trees along the riverbank were strong and healthy. Their roots grew deep in good soil with plenty of water from the river. Their leaves did not dry up or “wither.” During hot summers, those trees stayed fresh and green. Everything growing by the river grew well.

You should be like a tree planted by the rivers of water. You should [1] avoid sin, [2] love the Bible, and [3] meditate on the Bible. You can know what it means to be a “blessed” person. Psalm One says “whatsoever” the blessed person does “shall prosper.” By avoiding sin, you avoid many problems and much sadness. By loving the Bible and meditating on it, you make wise choices that bring success to your life, marriage and family. You and your family can be blessed. God blesses wise choices! He makes obedient people to be like trees planted by rivers of water.

This Is What It is Like to be a Blessed Person!

The Silent Word

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