We attended a funeral recently. At the family-owned cemetery, relatives gathered with shovels to bury the coffin. The family members tried encouraging the men who were shoveling by bantering with them, making comments, and impersonating the deceased; but as the sun became hotter, the work became harder, and the men got weaker. Finally, I could not stand it any longer, watching the men shoveling and wearing down, so I removed my overshirt, grabbed a shovel from a man who was taking a break, and began shoveling. Immediately the bantering stopped, a hush fell over the crowd, and it was uncomfortably silent until Auntie Jo said, “Who’s that white guy? Oh, it’s Dan!” After a while, Auntie Jo made her way to my wife and said, “It’s not just me; everyone was thinking it.” My helping the men that day earned goodwill with the family, which I hope will help in reaching them with the Gospel.
Since my last update, the Lord has used me personally to lead 19 people to Christ.
Four women were seated on a bench, two on one side and two on the other, like they were not associated with each other, but I hoped to talk to all four of them at once about the Gospel. The two women on the left were receptive, but the two on the right were not, and I sensed this. So, I explained the Gospel to all and asked if any wanted to pray and receive Christ as their Saviour. The two on the left prayed, but the two on the right did not. After praying, I asked them all if they had received Christ and meant it with their hearts. The two on the left happily replied yes and fist-bumped me, thanking me, but the two on the right said they were Jehovah’s Witnesses. I said, “Well, at least you had a chance to hear the Gospel.” The two on the left waved goodbye, smiling; the two on the right ignored me. I was thankful I did not first ask about religious affiliations, which could have gotten in the way of the Gospel.
While soul winning, I came across a mean-looking man wearing construction clothes and debated whether I should approach him. Deciding to take the chance, I introduced myself and extended my fist for a fist-bump. To my surprise, his mean look turned into a smile, and he fist-bumped me. When I asked him if he knew whether he would go to Heaven, he looked at me like he did not know what to say. As I explained the Gospel, he indicated that he understood and believed it and then prayed with me to receive the Lord Jesus Christ into his heart as his personal Saviour. When we finished praying, he looked at me, smiled, and thanked me. I sure am glad I did not let his mean look deter me from talking to him.
Island Baptist Church continues to be blessed. One of our faithful ladies has adult sons that are twins. Lately, the second-born son has started attending regularly. When he first started attending, his countenance seemed troubled, but now he has a different look about him, like the Lord is working in his life. It is a great blessing to see. One of our faithful men had a very serious situation at work involving his department and the federal government and asked for prayer concerning it. As we began to pray, all the neighborhood dogs started barking loudly, a dirt-bike-type motorcycle sped by open-throttle, and helicopters flew low overhead. When we finished praying, he looked at me like, “What just happened?!” I said to him that sometimes when things are very important, spiritually important, things like that tend to happen. This man has developed a well-respected reputation and testimony at work, and many rely on him in his department, though he is not the one in charge. This situation had the potential to place blame wrongly on him and his department and compromise their employment status. So not long afterward, he explained how the Lord took up for him in an amazing way, helping him figure out what his department should do, giving him the words to say to present it, and garnering favor with his immediate supervisors and the superiors over them who were investigating the situation. As a result, he was given a great advancement opportunity and passed the qualifications for a very important position. God is so good to His people. “. . . a very present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1)
Thank you for faithfully praying for us and supporting us. Please continue to pray for our health and safety, Island Baptist Church, Guam, and Micronesia.
In His harvest field,
Dan Rothwell and Family