Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Looking for Goodwill and Sharing It

Binghamton, NY

Chaplains had been in the Bible College parking lot when a man drove up to donate a box of pots and pans. He was going to be leaving town that afternoon and would not have the time to look for another location, the chaplains took the box and offered to donate them for him. 
After driving around a couple of days, with pans rattling in the trunk of the car, chaplains started to look for a Goodwill Store.  Seeing an elderly lady out working in her yard, the chaplain got out and went to ask about a local Thrift Store or Goodwill that would accept donations.  The lady did not know of one, but continued to share with the chaplain about the flood and her recent fall down several steps, having to have 4 large staples in her head.  She then saw "Billy Graham" on the chaplain's shirt and remarked her husband used to watch Mr. Graham on television all the time, until he died.  The chaplain asked Ms Isabel if she had not survived the fall, did she know that she would go to the heaven that Billy Graham preached about.  She said, "No, I am a catholic and I am not sure you can know".  She listened as the chaplain explained that scripture, 1 John 5:12-13 says "you may know that you have eternal life".  The chaplain shared the Steps to Peace with her and she started to pray, asking forgiveness and Jesus to come into her life, before the chaplain even read the prayer to her.  Ms. Isabel smiled and waved as the chaplains drove away.  Goodwill had been found, in the driveway of Ms. Isabel!

The Language of Love

Binghamton, NY

     A few days ago, a Samaritan's Purse Team Leader was driving and saw a elderly, Japanese lady dragging a heavy garbage can to the road and stopped to offer help.  Finding that she had been flooded and her children had helped her mud out her home, the SP Leader offered for SP to come and power wash and do mold remediation. 
     The spray team went in yesterday and got started with the basement.  While there, one of the SP members talked with the lady and found out she was married to a US Army man after the war and came to America from Japan.  She self taught herself English.
    The SP member asked the chaplains this morning if they had a Japanese Bible.  The chaplains called the number for the local Gideons and asked if they had one.  The Gideon, Charles Kark, said he did have a Japanese-English Bible he used for speaking in churches and he was willing to give it to the BGEA Chaplains.  The chaplains drove out to the farm and had prayer with Mr. Kark over the Bible. 
   The chaplains took the Japanese-English Bible to the job site, where Reiko (pronounced Layco) lives.  The chaplains gave the Bible to the team leader and then went to talk with her.  She is 76 years old and was raised in the Buddhist culture.  She shared about the flood and getting older and her husband dying.  When the chaplains asked her if she believed in Jesus Christ, she said she had attended the Lutheran church in high school and she believed in Him, but was not sure of heaven.  Chaplains shared the love of Jesus and the hope and assurance He can give for eternity.  Reiko, in broken English, prayed to receive Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior. 
  The chaplains signed the Bible, along with the SP team, and the Japanese-English Bible was given to Reiko.  She can now read more about the salvation and promises and hope Jesus gave to her.