“I heard about the Lord through missionaries,” Margaret (Budd) Bear shared with Tribal Trails viewers. She was referring to NCEMers Joe & Helen Pope who served in Cumberland House (SK) when she was a young teen.
“One day, while visiting, I opened up to Helen and told her that I was looking for something better in life,” says Margaret. Helen read Scripture, and invited her to accept Christ. “I knew exactly what she meant. We prayed, and it was at that moment I knew that I had become a new person.”
A few years later, after Margaret had drifted from her initial commitment, the witness of a couple Native Bible school students visiting in Cumberland helped get her back on track.
For Louis, while recovering in hospital from a serious car accident, it was a complete stranger who told him that God was giving him a second chance. He didn’t forget those words. A few years later Louis’ cousin began telling him about the Lord, and invited him to a Native church in Prince Albert. The fellowship and encouragement he got there helped him take a stand for Christ.
Leading someone to the Lord is very rewarding … no missionary will argue with that. The reality often is, though, that no one person alone influences another person to receive Christ. Usually there are a number of Christians who impact a life.
Our missionaries do much more than lead people to the Lord. They also disciple, encourage, and partner with Native believers in ministry. An example is Joe & Helen Pope themselves, who have spent much of their missionary career heavily involved in Bible education. They know the joy of seeing believers learn and grow.
And it doesn’t stop there. Like fruit, God’s work in people’s lives grows and bears more fruit. For instance, Karen Carrier, from Cumberland House, has also shared on video how, besides the Popes, it was Margaret Bear who made a big difference in her decision to follow Christ.
Adapted from our Northern Lights magazine (Issue #505). Note: some of the locations and involvements of our missionaries may have changed since the original publishing of this article.