July 18, 2022

Gideon’s Army in the Dominican Republic

An It Is Written evangelistic mission trip shows that God is still active, calling His own.

Wes Peppers, It Is Written

God is never limited by the number of people or resources available to accomplish His purpose. Over and over in Scripture, God does mighty things through little. He brings beauty out of ashes and glorifies Himself through the weak things of this world. He did this again during the It Is Written mission trip to the Dominican Republic in May 2022. 

It Is Written partnered with the Southeast Dominican Conference in an initiative to reach a previously unentered territory by the church. A church plant is developing, and the church building is almost finished.

The It Is Written mission team partnered with church members to conduct a medical clinic for the neighborhood inside the unfinished church building. Hundreds waited patiently for the free health care offered, which included dentistry, general medical care, cardiology, neurology, pediatrics, and more. Patients also received gifts of soap, toothbrushes and toothpaste, socks, vitamins, and much-needed medication. Every person received Bible-based literature, and many began asking questions immediately as they waited.

More than 600 community guests came through the clinic over several days, with more than 450 people saying yes to the invitation for Bible studies. The church is currently following up on those interests. Many people who came through the clinic will eventually become members of that new church family and worship in the building where they were first introduced to Jesus!

The mission team also funded and painted the newly constructed church inside and out, which significantly shortened the move-in date. The conference graciously dedicated the new building to It Is Written for substantially advancing this mission goal.

“I Did Not Want to Be a Pastor”

In addition to medical clinics and church renovation, the It Is Written team also conducted four evangelistic meetings and children’s programs. Several hundred attended the meetings, and more than 40 made decisions to follow Jesus in baptism. Hundreds of children participated in the nightly Vacation Bible School meetings, and many learned about Jesus for the first time.

One young man made his decision after wrestling with thoughts of God for several years. His hesitation was due to the impression that God was also calling him into full-time ministry. “I did not want to be baptized because I did not want to be a pastor,” he said. “Yet, God softened my heart through these meetings, and I surrendered to the call to be saved and serve others.” What a joyous moment!

A woman shared that she had been considering baptism for more than 10 years. God moved her heart through the preaching. She said, “Jesus is coming soon! I can’t afford to put Him off any longer. Christ is calling me now, and I am answering.” These are just a few of the more than 40 testimonies of God’s greatness.

The conference also owns a radio station that reaches the entire country of 11 million people. It is the third most listened-to station of any genre, and several influential business owners and high-ranking government officials listen to the programs daily. I shared my personal testimony, “The Atheist Who Found God,” live on their afternoon program, and we received several callers in response.

Indeed, it was like Gideon’s army again! The Lord did mighty things through just a small handful of people. This trip was a prelude to a more significant effort planned for August 2023. The conference will celebrate its 25th anniversary with 25 evangelistic series. It Is Written will conduct another mission trip with clinics, Vacation Bible Schools, and possibly construction. John Bradshaw will join, and his live evangelistic presentations will be broadcast on the radio station, reaching every home in the Dominican Republic.

The original version of this commentary was posted on the It Is Written “Updates” blog.

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