At the gate to the culture center where we are staying alone with guards watching at night, we heard excited children on their way to school. We were setting up equipment on the porch which could be seen at the gate. The children were looking for us for they heard that in the Friday first meeting presents were given. Little plastic frogs. So at the gate they were calling. The guard told them they could not come in. So from the gate they sweetly cried out. “Neepee Chura” (Give me a frog).
I urged Jenny to come out and start immediately her story. Translator Anne was ready in a flash and the Bible stories were told of queen Ester and her choice to put God first as is commanded in commandment number 1. The story of Naboth’s vineyard and the poochy lip disease of king Ahab. The commandments on not killing and not lying were taught. The kids loved that one because the tiny ones frightened to answer could at least make their lip poochy sticking way out and get a quiz prize. As soon as they got their little plastic frog they had to run find mama and show her. This made mama angry for all the mamas thought their children were in school. They came running with these angry looks to get their children back to school. But to their surprise they heard the story of Ruth and heard the missionaries teaching their children to help their moms. In fact one lady heard her own child giving answer of how they could cook to help their mom. The mother liked what she heard so she also stayed to listen. In a matter of minutes there was a small crowd of 300 children. The crowd increased through the Sabbath day of 10 hours of programs and by evening it was hard to count. It was estimated over 1000. It took a very long time to shake those hands as they went out the gate but we always do that. God says it tells them we love them to do this. He wants them to know they are valuable then they can believe He died for them too.
We used a generator and showed the book of Mathew word for word. We had planned to do this after my presentation but it was too light to see the pictures. It had been raining so heavily all night and during the Friday night meeting so I asked God to please stop it by 8AM. He did just that. I asked for a cloud cover so we could use our pictures and we got the cloud cover. I asked for electricity but the whole region was suddenly out of power. We praised God because our generator provided and no one could watch TV or do anything but come to meeting and watch the video of the life of Jesus.
A man read the Mathew texts from the Kenya Swahili Bible along with our English video. The chapter and verse shows in the corner of the screen so they know if they are in the right place as they read along. When we stopped the people cried out in a strong voice not to stop. We had read many chapters and they stood the whole time for several hours. They were still standing there after 10 hours of services. We guess that the crowd changed often and we had different people in those 10 hours. Perhaps the children of the morning gathered their families and that is how the crowd increased. Children were sitting for hours in the dirt on the rocks while adults stood. I even saw a razor blade right where the little bare feet had been. I think Jesus protected those little feet coming to hear His WORD. They are so hungry here for the WORD OF GOD. They have been troubled by wars for more than 6 years and now they are at peace and so hungry for God to bring them the answers to the longing in their hearts. They wanted so much for us not to stop. We told them come back and again on Sunday we would continue where we left off. Many had never heard the Bible before. It is sweet to them. The megaphone was the only way to make ourselves heard over such a large crowd. Today there is a team of people headed out into the jungle to invite more so we expect the crowd will double. We heard them since 4AM going through jungle singing their invitation to come to meetings. Then by 540AM they came here to the courtyard to pray. Their singing is like angels. They are so excited that they have us here. Clinic begins tomorrow. I can already see we shall be extremely busy.
This morning as I awoke, I was so strongly impressed that our 65 Bibles we have brought will not be enough for the harvest we will have. So we are praying about the amount to order and how will the funds be available for them. We know that John Pierre at the Bravo airlines booking office in Kinshasa has a brother translating Bibles in Nairobi into their native tongue. We know his Bravo office is a 3 minute walk from the ABC in Kinshasa. We know there are Swahili Congolese Bibles in Kinshasa. We will inquire for a source at good prices. I know there is some at the Adventist Book Center but our experience in Kenya tells us they ask the top dollar. We will see. The poor people at the guest house were troubled and frustrated at us for not paying them while we were trying to escape the dangers of being white in an area where there was anger at whites for supporting the newly chosen Congo leader. We needed to leave quickly and did not pay our bill at the guest house for we had nothing but a little to get on the plane. We praise God we escaped safely. This morning I felt so strongly that we were in need of Bibles. We still do not know the cost of these Bibles. We will try phone calls.
The phone calls to Jean Pierre reveal shops are closed on Sundays. He is wanting to help us. We praise God for him. His interest encourages us.
Last night there was a huge crowd. We lost count above 1,000. The crowd surges like the ocean during quiz. It gets dangerous for the tiny children sitting on the ground. The screaming and shouting is an experience we wish to share but you will just have to imagine. They shouted while we were trying to get the generator going. They waited 2 hours shouting this: “Why aren’t you showing us the Mathew DVD? Why are you not speaking to us during this wait?”
They are so hungry for gospel. They won’t leave when we have spoken for several hours already. There was a call made last night and 25 want baptism. Tonight we will call again. On Sabbath we will use up all the Bibles we brought in giving to these who will be baptized. They are getting 5 hours of Bible a day and still hungry like a sponge thirsty for water. Our dear translator Anne is kept busy for both Jenny and I. She is cheerful and thrilled to see so many wanting to eat spiritually.
We just got electricity this morning and are rejoicing in the blessings. We set up clinic real early in the morning and on my flash drive I am putting this message so we can hurry up to the election center and send off this message.
Pray for us. When the ocean waves of people press on us we so much wish that more of you had come along to help us. We will be needing another stack of Bibles. There are 90 percent of these people that are visitors. They should have 500 Bibles. I wish for 500 but have requested Jean Pierre to look for 100. Perhaps my faith is too small for what God can do for this thirsty war torn area. Even the children are warriors. When they want something they push like the ocean tidal waves to get it. We are swept along and fall under the surging waves. I can see why Satan fought us so much in coming here. There will be a harvest here like we have never seen before. I would not be surprised if we had 500 baptized.
This morning at 4AM a tiny choir started singing their invitation. They went far throughout the little villages in the jungle about us. We could hear them. It sounded like angels were singing with them. They are so unique in that their leader is speaking in a rhythm as he invites all to the blessings offered here in clinic and meetings. I thought there were 100 of them singing but it was a small group of about 10. I am sure the angels are magnifying their efforts.
We ran out of funds for fuel for generator and had all kinds of difficulty. Dr. Matenda was willing to sacrifice his return trip ticket money to carry on the work. He believes God will provide and he is right. As we used up all that is in our hands, we look to heaven. We always use what is in our hands and He can then multiply. Now we are down to 4 dollars and are excited to see the work going so well. Rejoice with us that the harvest will be enormous. Please pray and do all you can to help us raise and send funds for Bibles and by Western Union these can be sent to Jean Pierre and sent to us from Kinshasa on the airlines we came on. We are in the jungle without even a bank or internet option except at the government elections office.
We are challenged by 7 in the morning for the children demanding a Bible lesson before going to school. They will be back at 2 for another lesson. They will stay till 7 pm still wanting more lessons. I have never seen anything like this except in Russia in Perm Siberia right after the doors opened and we went in 93. The history of this people is very similar. The resulting hunger is so much the same.
Your fellow co-laborers in the Master’s Vineyard,
Dr. Rose and Jenny and Anne
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