No One Left Behind

-Ethel Price

When the churches of our land, uniting upon such points of faith as are held by them in common, shall influence the State to enforce their decrees and sustain their institutions, then will Protestant America have formed an image of the Roman hierarchy. Then the true church will be assailed by persecution, as were God's ancient people. {SR 381.2}

  “Whatever lies ahead, that road will lead me home.” President George W. Bush, November 2, 2004 

The original article I wrote about Soophaphone Sirivongsack (Soo) was entitled “Will I Find Faith" because it is an important question from Jesus. It certainly is my choice to let Jesus change me and renew my mind in His image. I want to have faith!

But there is another aspect to Soo’s story that I want to direct your thoughts to—whom will you take to Heaven with you? Did an angel do my work—your work—that we neglected to do? How many more “Soo’s” are out there searching and longing for the love of Jesus—and dying without it?

There is no other reason to discuss Soo’s story than to uplift Jesus, His Power, His Love, His salvation, and His sure and soon coming. This is not about Soo, or you, or me. It is about Jesus.

 Loren and I recently had the pleasure of getting personally acquainted with Soo in Sacramento during a visit there the last week of October 2004. I say pleasure, because Soo is a happy, friendly, loving Christian woman. I enjoyed seeing her open inquisitive mind soaking up truth from God’s Word, and seeking His direction often with us in our conversations and work together there. She talks so naturally about her Father.

On one of the days of our visit, we videotaped a conversational interview with Soo.  Our mutual good friend, Lottana Silafau, joined in to help should the occasion arise that either Soo or I had difficulty understanding the other. So now, I will retell the story of Soo with the added background and detail I have learned.

Soo was born prematurely at seven months to Vietnamese parents who lived in Laos and was just 40 days old when her mother died. Her father later died from cancer and another Buddhist family adopted Soo. Growing up, she was often sick and although she attended school for ten years, that wasn’t always steady. It sometimes took more than one year to finish one grade.

Wanting to learn more about her religion, Soo became a “nun” and lived in the temple on several occasions to study the Buddhist history. [She tells me Buddhists can be married and live in the temple— just not at the same time! If a married man decides to become a priest, he must leave his family and go through purification before coming to live in the temple as a monk, or priest.]

It was during this time that Soo learned from her “second father” (a Buddhist priest – see next paragraph) of a God who had come down from Heaven, who had marks in His hands, His feet, and His Side and Head…one that forgives sins and will come again to take His children to live in Heaven with Him. She learned His name as the “Second God.”

Soo’s adoptive parents moved to Australia when she was in her late twenties. Soo traveled back and forth from Laos to Australia. There was a cousin of the parents whom Soo also “adopted” as her father and she calls him “godfather” or “second father” and sometimes “dad.” He is now a priest in a Buddhist temple in Chicago, Illinois. When she was about 28, Soo’s never-strong body developed cancer of the breast that spread through her body to her liver, kidneys, and skin. She was in pain and weak. The doctor she saw in Australia, who took x-rays of her body, did a biopsy of her right breast and determined she did have cancer. The doctor said whether they operated on her liver and kidneys or not, that she would die. Her uncle, also a doctor, warned her not to let anyone operate on her.

The early morning of October 10, 2000 found Soo finishing her packing and getting ready for a 9 am flight to America. Since she was a child, Soo had longed to see the land she could only dream about from the pictures she had seen. She was grateful to her adoptive mother for helping to raise the $2500 she needed for the vacation trip that would include Canada, Guatemala, Mexico, and Washington D. C., finally ending in a visit with her “second father” in Chicago, Illinois.

As Soo prepared to go to sleep, she saw something strange reflected in her window—her bedroom door was opening and shutting. Three times it happened. Her hair stood on end; she got goose bumps on her arms. She was frightened that an evil Buddhist spirit was visiting her. So Soo prayed to the “Second God” [PRA-MA-XI-ANN in her language] and the manifestation stopped. Relieved and at peace, she turned off her light to go to sleep.

Instead of darkness, there soon appeared a light in her room that grew brighter until she was blinded for several minutes. Once able to see, she saw a tall man in a long white robe with flowing sleeves. [No wings, she tells me!] His garment was not made of cloth, but rather was like a glowing light about him. She had no fear of him even before he told her not to be afraid. She was fascinated by his white skin and hair, and beautiful countenance.

In a kind, melodic voice he told her about Jesus, the God of Heaven that made her, loved her, and died to forgive her sins and save her. He said Jesus had marks in His Hands, Feet, Side, and Head and told her Jesus holds the keys of Heaven and of Hell.

This shining being talked with her in her native tongue for about one hour telling her about Jesus, telling her she could trust Jesus and giving her directions of how to learn more about Him.  The angel directed Soo to go to the Seventh-day Adventist church when she arrived in America, saying, “It is the true church.” He told her when she visited their church she would hear the song “What a Friend We Have in Jesus,” and that at a big Bible conference she was to attend, she would hear the song “Rock of Ages.” The angel said those songs were sung in Heaven. [Enoch, Moses, Elijah, and those resurrected with Jesus are in Heaven for this choir.]

Then he gave her the names of five men to see in America. She was to contact Mark Finley, Ron Halverson, Kenneth Cox, Doug Batchelor, and give a message to John Carter to teach her about Revelation, the time of trouble, Matthew 24, the Lord’s Prayer, and Leviticus 11.

[Soo has met these men, I have photographs of them with her to prove it, but the language barrier and her lack of understanding of the angel’s message about coming events may have prevented her from giving them the full story and them from truly understanding about the angel’s visit. She has still not been able to study all the teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist church from the Bible, as there is no SDA literature printed in Laotian. There are some New Testaments in a few of the major dialects, but nothing for the majority of people. She has slowly learned to read an English Bible and sometimes uses an English/Thai Bible.]

Soo asked the angel to write down the names of the church and the men she was to contact, because she spoke and wrote no English. The angel told her he would spell them for her, but that she must write them herself. Soo was directed to study the King James Bible and to translate three books she had never heard of before—Steps to Christ, The Great Controversy, and Desire of Ages—into her native tongue and take them back with her to Laos. She was to take care of the orphans and those with “no hands and no feet” [War casualties] in Laos, and to “go back to your country and tell your people everything you have learned...Jesus is coming very, very soon.”

As the angel talked to her, he told her to write down some of the information...even spelling words and names she had never before heard. She was to contact Roger Coon from the “Ellen G. White Conference” [as she told me] for which he gave her not only the name, but also the phone number of the White [Estate] in Silver Springs, MD. [The White Estate has confirmed the phone number.] She was to ask him for 9,000 copies of the books to take back with her to Laos: three thousand of each book. As of this date she has not yet contacted Roger Coon.

Soo was told to find a school that would teach her the health message and after that to go to Sacramento to find her own people that would help her with the translations into Laotian. As the angel began speaking to Soo, she noticed the pain in her breast, from the operation that was not fully healed, in her kidneys, and in her liver—was gone! She felt strengthened—her cancer was healed! [Soo still has a visible scar under her right breast and a quite large patch of apparently healed lighter colored skin on her left leg where she says a skin cancer used to be. Perhaps she bears these marks as a reminder of God’s mercy to her.] When she wanted to go tell her mother the good news about her cancer the angel said it would have to wait...she needed to move forward. He also assured her she would see her real mother in heaven. [Soo knew about the “Second God,” perhaps her mother did, also.]

The angel then gave Soo information that to her was puzzling. He told her when she went to America that something bad was going to happen. However, the angels were going to hold the winds and the gospel would spread to the all world. He said that something bigger would happen in America and that the Sunday law would come in after that. Soo asked him “What is Sunday law?” His answer made it no clearer to her; “Good people work in government, but they work for evil. Watch the news.”

In all the angel appeared to her three times (twice here in America.) The second visit was just as she was landing in California. He told her she would hear a sound like wind whistling when he came. She heard the sound and saw him through her window of the plane. As she said “hi.” A woman nearby asked if Soo was speaking to her! The angel told her she was in America now, and that God would take care of her. He told her to remember to read the Bible, pray the Lord’s Prayer every night, and to trust, surrender, and obey. Then he told her he had to go with Gabriel to New York—that people there need Jesus—and “after a big problem there had passed, the gospel would spread to all the world.”

Soo spent the next few weeks attending the wedding of a friend in Washington, D.C. and vacationing, as she was scheduled, in Canada, Guatemala, and Mexico, ending up in Chicago, Illinois. Her “second father” and a "step-brother" met her at the airport and she shared much of the angel’s visit and message with the man she loved as her father. He was still too concerned about possible “Y2K” threats to take her seriously. He insisted she become a nun again and live in the temple. He didn’t want her to leave her religion. Soo refused, and two years would pass before he would speak to her again. [He flew to Uchee Pines in May of 2004 because of a dream that directed him to go to Soo there for treatments for his own cancer.]

Soo went to Wisconsin searching for the “big Bible conference” the angel told her to find. Her “step-sister” mistakenly took her to the Seventh-day Baptist church, but an old woman from a Sunday Baptist church finally came up to her and said she had been directed to help Soo and took her to the Seventh-day Adventist church! Soo attended and there she finally heard the song “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.”

Then followed a time of seeking the “big Bible Conference” and Soo traveled from Elgin, Illinois to Kissimmee, Florida to Phoenix, Arizona! Always the kindness of strangers—Pastors and others—sent her along in her search, but they hadn’t heard of a “big Bible Conference.” Then, in Phoenix, the angel told her she needed to be baptized. She hadn’t yet been able to study the “27 points of doctrine” and the angel gave her directions if the Pastor was reluctant to baptize her because of her lack of full knowledge of the Bible’s teachings. He said to ask the Pastor; “Do you love Jesus?” two times.

Soo was baptized in June of 2002. Her angel was there clapping his hands with joy. What a precious memory Soo has of that time. Every time she thinks of it, her eyes well up with tears as she remembers the song “Love Lifted Me” that the angel gave her for her baptism. In the time we spent with Soo, she was often humming that song. [An organist from Soquel told me she came up to him and asked him to play this hymn for her. He was delighted in her appreciation of the beauty of the organ music.]

Finally, in Phoenix, the angel said the Bible Conference was going to be held in San Diego. Then he told her “not to rely on him, but to rely on Jesus.” His work for her was done...he was going back to Jesus. [As we spoke of this last week, Soo turned to me and asked “What does rely mean?” Soo has a bright mind, continually questioning and soaking up information as she begins to understand.]

Soo attended Mark Finley’s Bible Conference in San Diego in 2002 and was able to meet him there and share a bit of her miraculous conversion. She showed him his name written in her book as the angel had directed. He then took her to meet Ron Halverson and she is radiant in her picture between the two of them.

At the end of the conference, a local Laotian Pastor contacted Judy Aitken at the Adventist Southeast Asia Project to seek advice of where to direct Soo for a “school where she could learn about health.” Judy directed them to Uchee Pines (www.UcheePines.org) and Soo spent nearly two years there learning many things: English, massage, hydrotherapy, and life lessons. Soo told me when she got too busy trying to study in English for her tests and neglected her personal time with God, that He drew her back to spend more time with Him. Something told her “rely on Me, rely on Me, rely on Me.” So she asked Jesus to teach her and said that He began waking her up at 3:00 am every day to study.

In her time there, Soo finally began to learn enough English to share her testimony with those to whom she was giving treatments. She learned many good things while there and thanks both Uchee Pines and Judy—and holds them up in her prayers. [Soo shared parts of her story there, and in surrounding areas, as the opportunity arose and was sensitive to whether people believed her story or not, tending not to share more if she felt disbelief. She doesn’t force herself on people.]

Soo has worked with others to begin the translations she was directed to do. Translation of the book “Steps to Christ” has been completed and she is working on chapter 17 of The Great Controversy, which she is translating from Thai to Lao with the assistance of a local elder at the Japanese SDA church in Sacramento. It will need to be verified by comparing the English to Lao to assure its accuracy. [Any volunteers out there?] She also is just beginning to understand what the “Sunday law” is, as a new friend in the Sacramento area just shared with me. She is thrilled to have finally read up to the chapter on the Time of Trouble in The Great Controversy.

So again I say yes, I believe Jesus will find faith when He returns. He will find it in Soo, who is now understandingly following the “Second God” Jesus, the Son of God and looks joyfully for His soon return. On November 15, 2004, Soo will return for a few months to Australia to renew her visa and passport and begin the process of laying the groundwork for her mission in Laos. Keep her, her family, her project, and Laos in your prayers.

Time is indeed very short. Jesus is coming very, very soon. I’ve known since 9/11/01 that the angels were holding the winds. We have all the information we need at our fingertips in the Bible and the writings of Ellen G. White. Early Writings and Great Controversy are filled with truth and lead us to the Bible and its prophecies again and again.

In the early spring of 2002, God awakened me at 3:00 in the morning and the Holy Spirit spoke to my mind. He said, “Do you want to live to the Second Coming or do you want to die? With that I was shown the enormous difficulty of either path. I said, “I can’t choose, Lord, You choose for me.”

I’ve come to trust Him with my life. When that window closed, what immediately came to my mind were the children, grandchildren, brothers, sisters, cousins, friends, in-laws, ex-laws, church members, and all whom my life touches that I wanted to be sure are ready to meet Jesus.

Our daughter wanted to stay home from her full-time job after her third child was born last year, and be a full-time mom. She was worried there wouldn’t be enough money for health insurance and other necessities of life. I said to her “It won’t matter anyway for long, because Jesus is coming soon.”

She replied “Mom, our grandparents and their grandparents all said the same thing!” I looked at her in astonishment—was she joking—quoting Peter to me—or was she serious? I shot up a quick prayer for the right words. Finally I said, “That may be, but God never woke me up at 3:00 in the morning before and asked me if I wanted to live to the Second Coming or die.” She was silent. She stayed home to train her children for the Lord and now also believes His coming is very near!

What about you, friend? You and I don’t need an angel to tell us about God. We have the knowledge of the great love and sacrifice of Jesus for us. Please, listen to the pleading of the Holy Spirit today. Seek Him, pray for the outpouring of the Latter Rain, shout it from the housetops, and work like the night was coming!

Jesus truly is coming soon. Let there be “No One Left Behind!”

-Ethel Price

Loren and Ethel Price
THE OMEGA PROJECT MINISTRIES
“No One Left Behind” Seminars

This article, as well as Ethel's interview of Soo taped October 26, 2004 and an interview with Jim Doss taped April, 2004, can be obtained/viewed at www.BiblePlus.org/Soo.

 

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