by Ruth Overholtzer
Copyright © 2013 Child Evangelism Fellowship, Inc.
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In the early 1950's Russell and Barbara Reed of Overseas Missionary Fellowship (formerly China Inland Mission) sought out hidden unknown tribes deep in the jungles of the Philippines. They used the Wordless Book with marked effect with these primitive peoples. When Russell explained the red page, light broke over them. They had a custom of sacrificing chickens to placate the spirits of whom they were deadly afraid, but now they were hearing that the Son of God had already been sacrificed for their sins. How wonderful this was to them! The little book made a big contribution toward founding the church of Jesus Christ among them.
At Urbana '87, Dr. Helen Roseveare, an outstanding medical missionary, told thousands of missionary candidates and would-be candidates of her experience in Uganda in 1972. A native herdsman approached her asking, "Are you the one sent by a great God to tell us something?" Taking her five-color Wordless Book she related, "I sat down beside him and in 25 minutes he had put his trust in Jesus Christ."
Arleigh Martin, Middle East regional director for CEF® had left Cypress to touch down in the Arabian Gulf countries. He carried with him a deep, nagging cough.
"Do the colors in your suit pocket mean anything?" the Muslim X-ray technician asked when Arleigh landed in hospital. The technician was eyeing the corners of five colored handkerchiefs extended upwards from the missionary's pocket! "They remind me of a story I heard 45 years ago as a five-year-old boy in the mountains of Lebanon," he continued.
"Why, yes, it's the same Wordless Book story!" Arleigh assured him.
"Please tell it to me again," requested the technician.
Arleigh briefly told the story of salvation with Scripture and the book of colors; gold for Heaven, black for the darkness of sin, red for the blood of Christ, white for the clean heart, green to grow in the knowledge of God.
Tears streamed down the man's face. "God sent you here to encourage me today. It's been a renewal!" he said as he embraced Arleigh in a big bear hug (Middle East style). Apparently CEF® 's first missionary in Lebanon told this man the story years ago and he has been a secret believer, working and living in the midst of Islam.
"Do you have a book like this that I could have?" he asked.
"Yes, and here are some Bible verses for you to read to go with each page. Do you have a Bible?"
"I have an Arabic Bible," he answered.
"Why don't we have a word of prayer before I leave?"
The technician agreed. But first he closed all the windows and doors so no one in the hospital compound could hear the praying. Arleigh prayed, "Lord, help this believer in You to grow...Amen."
Another big embrace~ "Thank you for coming! This has been the greatest day in my life for years."
Yes, the Wordless Book is still alive and well on planet earth. Have you ever used it to lead someone to receive Jesus Christ as his Savior? Try it! You will not only like it but experience unspeakable joy as you share the Gospel through "that little book."