Deaf men stir IMB worker's heart for their souls
The Deaf men in the room copied the stance but remained silent, as they couldn't hear the verbal entreaty. At least the men were able to see the ceremony; the Deaf women in the next room covered their heads and wondered what was happening.
One thing was certain, the dead man's soul was in danger. Allah does as he wills, and no Muslim is ever certain whether he will accept their works and obedience.
Maybe Allah will accept this, the men said to one another at the memorial service. Maybe.
After the service, the mood lightened with a memorial meal. David and Tamar talked with the group of men over tea.
"If we keep giving him tea, one day he'll be Muslim like us," Tamar joked.
"No, but I pray for you to become a Christian and follow Jesus," David said.
"Me? You pray for me?" Tamar asked.
When David assured Tamar that he regularly prays for him, he was stunned. He just sat there speechless.
David and his wife Kelly* met Tamar and his wife Nadia* more than a year ago. Kelly and Nadia are good friends now, but Tamar has always kept his distance and never shown interest in David or his faith until now.
"Prior to this, I had all of three conversations with Tamar, all of them superficial," David said.
David and Kelly are in awe of how God is working even through the hopelessness of the memorial service and the casual banter over tea. And they are praying that Tamar will continue to respond to their friendship and prayers.
"Pray for Tamar and his wife. Pray for them to see the light of Christ in our lives, our words and our love for them," David said.
Learn more about Southern Baptists' ministry among the world's 35 million Deaf at imb.org/deaf, including an infographic about Deaf peoples. Watch this video about Southern Baptists at work among Deaf peoples and alongside national partners. Gifts through the Cooperative Program and the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering support Southern Baptists such as David and Kelly in Central Asia who are taking the Gospel to Deaf peoples around the world who have never heard it.