We were able to find the “Five Fish” files we were looking for and they are now on the Torches (simple players) we are distributing. I thought you would find this story, not only interesting, but fulfilling as well.
…This morning, in our early morning Bible class a young man from another village was there. After the class he spoke up and told how he had just gotten in last night. While visiting and staying with a relative here, he listened as they played someone talking in Yanomamö. “I grew up knowing that long ago, my uncle, my father’s real brother, had given his voice to talk about God. I realized I was listening to my uncle! At first it made me sad to hear him. Then, I listened to the words he was saying. My heart got so excited. How I wish my father could hear his brother’s voice and hear his message. We do not live in peace at all. But my uncle spoke of peace in knowing Yai Bata and his son JesuCristo.
I am asking you now to give me one of those devices so I can take it home and let my father and mother hear this. I think my whole family is going to accept the message my uncle is telling from so long ago, but it sounds like he is still alive and talking now….” His voice trailed off and I detected tears in his eyes. I also had tears in my eyes! Wow! God’s Word truly never returns void!*
Now, I don’t know what the young man’s father and mother did when they heard the recordings, but a few days later another young man from that area, showed up at our door saying he was the grandson of the man speaking on the device. His mother is the daughter of the man speaking. He begged us for a Torch so he could take it home and let his mother and her sisters who live in another village hear this too. Join us in praying that God is going to use these recordings to break the villages of the Ocamo River area wide open for the Gospel. By the way, it is almost a two day paddle to get here from the village he came from. So we had someone take him home from here with one of our motors. We not only gave him a Torch but sent one for his mother as well.
The recordings are new to the Torches, [but] the funny thing is, it is material from the early 60s that my parents had helped worked on. Our prayer is, God is going to use these recordings, done so long ago, to open hearts to HIS love for them. Pray with us about this.
We have been almost overwhelmed with visitors coming wanting the Torches. I had to smile as I listen to our Yanomamö team telling people to “just wait in your villages as we are going to be bringing and placing Torches.” Later on, alone with them, I tried to gently remind them that if someone is willing to paddle so far for one, (I am talking days and days of paddling one way) they just might be the person that God has been preparing their hearts for the messages on these devices. But, all that to say, our days are full of taking care of all these visitors.
— emails from Michael, Venezuelan Amazonia
The interesting thing about this story is the man on the recordings, Yaubewä, as far as I know, was one of the very few, possibly, even the only Yanomamö from that entire area to accept the Gospel. This was back in the early 60s. To me, it is a fascinating story because it does show how God directs and orchestrates every detail of our lives. I am sure Mom and Dad (missionaries to this tribe), over the years thought those recordings they had helped do with Yaubewä were just a total waste of time. I know I did. Growing up, I cranked the old record player until I was blue in the face and people barely listened to the messages and I don’t think any of us thought they would ever do much. Now that he is dead, culturally, it is very taboo to even listen to or have something from a deceased person. But for some reason, the simple Gospel lessons on those recordings have really touched a spot in their Yanomamo hearts.
There are about 10 villages in that close area and most of the people are related somehow to the man who made the recordings. Since I first reported, both those young men have since come back with others from their villages and all the surrounding villages. So many people have paddled over here, by family groups and then, almost entire villages wanting their own Torch (player loaded with messages). They sit here with tears in their eyes telling us about how, although initially it made them sad to hear this voice from the dead, as they listened, their own hearts have been stirred to have and know the peace that he talks about in the recordings. “We all got together as a family and listened to the messages, it was sad, we were all crying with tears streaming down our faces, but we kept listening. Now, we want what he had. That peace.” They insist.
Join us in praying that God is going to use these recordings from so many years ago to break open this entire hardened area for the Gospel. Pray that many people will come to a personal knowledge of Jesus as Savior and Lord.
Also, continue praying for us as a mission and as a family. We have been under relentless spiritual attack on many different levels for months now. We believe it is because we are pushing the boundaries for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and satan is not willing to give up these strongholds. Our prayer is that he will be bound and thwarted in his attempts to hinder. Join us as we pray and trust the Lord for a bountiful harvest.
Michael and Keila Dawson
May 31, 2023
* These recordings were recorded by Dutch GRN recordist, John van Kampen, in the late 1950s