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An experience from Istanbul

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Think you all will enjoy this!

This is an experience copied from an email from Brother Weldon Howse from Santa Barbara, CA to Sister Cindy. (She too, lives in CA.)

"This was shared during hospitality by the visiting speaker from Westwood, Sam and Clara Blevins. Sam and Clara just returned from attending an International Convention in Vienna. Their trip took them to several other places including the city of Istanbul, Turkey. At one point the tour group was on a cruise ship. The waiter attending their table was very friendly. Either they gave him the nickname 'Scooter' or he had acquired it. He noticed their lapel badges to the International Convention. In the conversation they mentioned that they were stopping over for a day or so at Istanbul. Scooter said, "That is my city! I'll show you around when you come there." He gave his e-mail address to the group. The day before they were to fly to Istanbul they sent Scooter an e-mail, not really expecting to hear from him. They did not receive a reply. They figured he was working on another cruise.

After an 11 hour exhausting flight their taxi brought them to the hotel where they had rooms in Istanbul. A hotel employee came up and said, "There is a guest waiting for you." It was Scooter. He had brought his wife and 2 sons on an hour long train trip just to meet them at the hotel. He was going to fly to London the next day to waiter on another ship but did not want to miss this opportunity to talk with them. They asked him if he would be interested in learning more about the Bible. He translated this to his wife. It turns out 5 of her immediate family had been killed that week. She did not speak English but nodded that she would like to learn the Bible. Scooter asked them if they were hungry. They agreed to go to a restaurant down the street that he wanted to show them. After they walked through the hotel doors onto the street a man and a woman who had been walking along the sidewalk stopped them. The woman said, "You are Jehovah's Witnesses!" Scooter is astounded. How can these strangers to his city have a woman who hugs them and speaks to them like friends in this huge city they have never been to before? It turns out she is a sister from Bulgaria. She and her husband just moved to Istanbul. She is a regular pioneer AND speaks the language that Scooter's wife speaks. So Clara introduces her to Scooter's wife and the two of them start talking and exchanging contact information in preparation for a Bible sturdy.

I don't really have to comment on the obvious maneuvering Jehovah did in making this 'impossible' situation flow together. In that metropolis of Istanbul what chance was there for this humble, grieving woman to get comfort and learn the Bible? Just a minute sooner or a minute later and that would not have come together.~ ~

On the Flight out of Istanbul, Clara asked for a bulkhead seat. Her feet give her trouble and she wanted to be able to stretch her legs out. The problem was that there was only 1 seat there and her seat mate was a man, not Sam. She was debating which means more - 'stretching out my aching legs or sitting next to my dearly beloved.' Before she had a chance to take a stand on this issue the man turns to her and says, "You're one of Jehovah's Witnesses, aren't you?" Clara says, "Yes." He says, "I have some questions I have been wanting to ask a Witness." A 2 - hour conversation ensues where she answers his Bible questions.

Do you think Clara thought of her aching feet even once during those 2 hours? ~ ~

What a great day! First I got to attend a Bible study with a brother this morning that I really enjoyed. I had some up-building conversations at the Kingdom Hall and then afterwards got to hear these wonderful experiences. ~ ~ Cindy

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I do like this one as well. And I can say that this one can be believable especially in light of the International Convention that had been held in the area, thus increasing the odds for witnesses to turn up quite frequently.

But then there is this...

I don't really have to comment on the obvious maneuvering Jehovah did in making this 'impossible' situation flow together

And I wanted to say that I, and some in my congregation, have got to experience things like this firsthand, being there when someone was in need and knocking on their door after they had been praying. It's so cool when it does happen and is totally faith strengthening, because you know that Jehovah or his angels were certainly having a hand in your ministry that day.


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