A Day of Surprises

October 17 2008 / ShareHim in South Africa, Oct. 17 - Nov. 1 '08 #328
by Elfriede Volk

Personal Testimony of Elfriede Volk.

When the speaker who had been scheduled to take the service at the Penticton Seventh-day Adventist church on September 27 cancelled at the last moment, the elder decided to do a testimony service. Towards the end, Emmy Janzen got up.

Emmy and her husband had attended the German ShareHim series Heinz and I did 2 years ago. We prepared the daily handouts which summarized the sermons ourselves, though after 50 and 60 years away from the country, our knowledge of the language was flawed. We also did not have meetings Sabbath mornings. But the first Sabbath evening Emmy asked, “Do you have church services on Saturday?”

“Yes, we do,” I said.

“Can we come?”

We assured her they would be welcome any time. They have not missed a Sabbath since.

As Heinz presented the state of the dead, I heard a commotion from where Emmy was sitting. Afterwards she told me, “When he said the punctuation was put in the wrong place, I just couldn’t help myself. I poked Peter and said, ‘See? I told you the punctuation was incorrect!’”

When the series was over, Emmy asked me to help her put the handouts in the correct order, as she wanted to send them to her brother in Winnipeg. I ran off 2 more copies and put them into booklet form, with coil binding. A week later I got one copy back.

“I hope you don’t take it the wrong way,” she said apologetically, “but I saw some spelling and grammatical errors, and wrote in the corrections so that the next time you do the series….”

I made the corrections and sent the finished copy to Elder Bob Folkenberg, so that others could use it too.

At the German Camp Meeting held in May in Hope, BC, Emmy told of God’s intervention in the life of her family during the Stalinist years. Afterwards I said that I would like to write the story up for Renewed and Ready, the new Adventist magazine for seniors.

“I could do that myself,” Emmy said. (It will be in the December, 2008 issue.)

“I began my walk with the Lord 60 years ago,” Emmy began her testimony. “I was raised Lutheran, but at 15 years of age I asked, ‘Why do we keep Sunday when the Bible says that the 7th day is the Sabbath?’ I was told that we are now under the Christian dispensation and keep Sunday in honor of the resurrection.

“The answer did not satisfy me, and at 19, when I was baptized by immersion into the Baptist church, I again raised the question. It surfaced anew when I met and married Peter and joined the Mennonite church. Then, when Pastor Heinz talked about the Sabbath, it was as if a blindfold fell off my eyes, and I could see everything clearly.

“I have waited 2 years for Peter to join me, but I don’t want to wait any longer. Pastor Heinz, I know I made arrangements to join the church next week by profession of faith, but there are so many other things going on then. Why do I need to wait longer? Why can’t I join the church now, today?”

Her acceptance into church fellowship was unanimous.
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