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Christian Reach out experience #4 Left behind
ST Vincent, island of beautyClick thumbnail to view full-size
I would love to share another story that originated from my brother-in-law, Don Overstreet, having been the first Baptist missionary to the island of St Vincent many years ago. This is one of many stories included in my book, Reach out, each day.
I am in awe of the way God moves in our lives. In this case, it started with an email showing up in my inbox on the computer.
One day an email arrived from a name I didn’t recognize with this message: I am trying to find Don Overstreet as I need to talk to him and I found your website when I did a search on the internet. Since you have the same last name, appear to be a Christian and live in California where I believe he came from, I thought I would take a chance and contact you. Do you know him? He was a missionary on St Vincent about twenty years ago when I was a little girl. I responded back, “Yes, he is my brother-in-law. I will give him your phone number and he can call you.”
I contacted her in a few days to see if they had made contact and she told me yes and thanked me for helping her. She proceeded to tell me that she had been hurting in her heart and angry with her father all her life since she was just a little girl. The following is a short version of why she needed to talk to Don. And how God used me to help her by my own experiences.
When this lady was a little girl, living on the island of St Vincent with her family, her father was arrested, put in prison and sentenced to death.
While my brother-in-law was starting his church there, he realized there was a great need for a prison ministry, so he began teaching the bible to the inmates, one of which was the father in this story.
Don spent lots of time with this prisoner and finally, he accepted Jesus as his personal savior and began to study and worship God. He wrote a song about how he loved God and was not afraid to die, as he would then be going to heaven to be with Jesus.
As the prisoner was walking to the gallows (yes, hanging was the means of fulfilling the death penalty on the island), he was singing this song he wrote and praising the Lord—smiling, because he knew he would soon be in heaven.
Meanwhile, his family was standing there, watching him happily walking to his death. His little girl felt he was deserting her, that he was happy to be leaving her behind when she loved and needed him so badly.
She grew up feeling this terrible anger toward him for wanting to leave her behind.
At the time she contacted mel, searching for Don, she was being compelled to put her anger behind her so she could have a better life.
She and I began a conversation about the loss of a father. I told her I could somewhat understand her feelings.
I explained that my dad died of a heart attack when I was a young woman. He had not taken care of himself due to hard work and love of alcohol so he died at fifty-two. I was in my early twenties, with three small children who would grow up never really knowing their grandfather.
I described to her my feelings of anger because I felt he should have taken better care of himself. I told her how I felt jealous when I saw other young women who still had their dads.
At that time my two younger sisters were still in elementary and Jr. high school and would be raised by my mom, without the love and guidance of a dad.
We had long talks by email and I believe we also had phone conversations during that period of time.
The day that I asked her if she was able to talk to Don, she said, “Oh yes, he called me right away after you gave him my phone number and we talked about all my feelings. But, Betty, you were able to help me with my problem better than anyone else has ever been able to. Thank you so much for spending time and sharing your life story with me.”
She is now praising God in song herself, as her father did all those many years ago. She has a beautiful voice. The latest I have heard is that her brother is now involved with a prison ministry in ST Vincent !!
Old Time Way
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