"I shall die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord" (Ps. 118:17). These words of the psalmist express my own desires. I am writing this experience with the hope that whosoever reads it may praise the Lord with me.
Truly the Lord is using the weak who have confidence in Him to work wonders in His name. In 1960 I received a call to work at Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti, for the moral and spiritual uplift of our churches there. As I began my work I requested the help of one of our ministers from the union mission in order to organize a revival. We arranged for meetings every night in our largest church in that city. Members from neighboring churches also accepted our invitation and joined in the revival meetings every night. After each meeting prayer bands were held, at which sins were confessed and wrongs righted. It was evident that many were receiving help from these meetings, so we asked all the local elders to assist us in our different prayer bands. These lay leaders gave excellent help. Reconciliations were made, husbands and wives renewed their vows to be faithful, children made things right with their parents.
Moved by the grace of God, I then suggested that every member invite his relatives and friends to partake of the blessings the Lord was bestowing upon us. The effect was most gratifying. A real interest was awakened, and after three months of revival we had the privilege of baptizing 167 precious souls. Not only was the whole city set on fire for God but also the outlying suburbs. The Lord was honoring our faith. At the first baptism five ministers participated.
Our aim for that year was to baptize six hundred souls. But unfortunately I received a shot from the enemy. My dear wife, a companion of twenty-seven happy years, died suddenly from a heart condition just after we returned from visiting some friends. This shock told heavily on my own heart and nerves and I, too, became ill. After treatment at our hospital at Bella Vista, Puerto Rico, I was able to begin my work again. Shortly after this I received a call to work in another area in the French West Indies—Martinique.
We came to this new territory three years ago and although we speak the same language as in Haiti, yet we discovered many things different.
When we move into a new area we believe our first responsibility is to be a friend to everybody notwithstanding the background or the problems that sometimes divide churches. Any spirit of division paralyzes the spiritual growth of the church and must be overcome at all costs. In meeting such problems we have found that the best method is to organize prayer hands in different homes. At these gatherings we discuss important points on doctrine and encourage a spirit of earnest inquiry. These meetings in the homes of the people have brought encouraging results. Under the blessing of God we baptized 103 new believers the following year.
At the beginning of 1964 we called all the church officers of the district together to make plans for a greater offensive headed by our great Captain. We emphasized that this is the time for the church to receive the latter rain in fulfillment of God's promise and explained the importance of more love and faithfulness among those who are waiting for the second coming of Christ. In every meeting we sought to uplift Jesus Christ as our Saviour and Lord.
Our aim has been to get as many Adventist homes as possible to become centers where the gospel is preached. To these home gatherings we invited relatives, friends, neighbors, and backsliders of the church. As a result of this work already fifty-three souls have been baptized and we have more than one hundred in the baptismal class. These will go forward in baptism during the next few weeks.
Truly "God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the . . . mighty," and we rejoice in the consciousness of His presence as we lead these dear ones through the water into a richer spiritual life. When evangelism begins and continues in the atmosphere of revival, God always gives encouraging results.