Dr Nick knew all too well what it meant to be a poor student, to sleep on the floor in a friend’s room when there was no money to afford paying rent, and to sleep on an empty stomach on more than one occasion, and yet to excel in school and finish among the top of your class.
Romans 12:9 says, “Let your love be genuine.” In our Romanian Bible it adds a bit more to the idea – it says, “Let your love be without false pretentions.”
This was the kind of love Dr Nick had and was known for, marking his whole life and living a dent in the world.
Dr. Nick (center) with Bill Bathman (right) and fellow Romanian pastor, Paul Negroot (left).
Dr. Nick Demonstrated Compassionate Generosity
While a student in the university, a young man in Nick and Cornelia's church lost his father to cancer.
He was in his third year of studies, and the family was not well-to-do. Besides this, the father was the main breadwinner in the family, and he had three other siblings.
After the funeral, the couple decided to give him a monthly allowance from that moment and until he finished his studies.
Even though this happened some 20 years ago, to this day, he remembers the help he got without which it would have been much harder to complete his degree, maybe even impossible.
Dr. Nick's compassion for the hurting led to the existence of ITMI project, Casa Dorca Orphanage.
Dr. Nick Was Generous in Investmenting in People and Ministries
Dr Nick mentored a young theology student who was studying in the Seminary in Bucharest in mid-90’s.
At that time, Dr Nick was the General Secretary of the Romanian Baptist Union and living in Bucharest part of the month, and his studio apartment was in the same building as the dorm which housed the students.
Dr. Nick advised the theology student many times, and helped financially as the need arose. Upon graduation, this theology student became a pastor in a church in North East Romania, and would visit Dr Nick in Oradea from time to time.
He remembers how once he was in Oradea at the church and met Dr Nick, who told him, “You must come by our house – we have an envelope for you.”
The pastor relates the envelope had a sum of money which was exactly the sum needed for the down payment on a piece of land he was looking to buy for ministry. To this day his eyes light up when he shares the story of how the Lord “whispered” to Dr Nick about this need.
Dr. Nick preached passionately about Jesus from the pulpit and with his life.
Dr. Nick Prioritized His Family, Not Wealth
When in the US during the early 70’s, working at a clinic in Baltimore, Dr Nick was offered a job with a generous monthly salary.
Almost on the spot he refused, saying his family (wife Cornelia, daughter Corina and son Radu – Ema had not been born yet) was more important to him.
He went on to say that staying away from them for a longer period of time (due to the Communist regime in Romania at that time, the family would not have been able to join him right away) was not what he desired, despite the benefits of the job.
Throughout his whole life he was an advocate for family values and family unity, and in his later years, he would always say to us how grateful he is to the Lord for family, for blessed family reunions, for good communication and great relationship among siblings.
Dr. Nick and his wife, Cornelia, with their daughter, Ema Ban and her family.
Many years ago, Maja* was invited to a Baptist Church in her city, Kalisz, Poland. She did not accept the invitation…at least not right away. Fast forward quite a few years. Jakub*, Maja’s son…
The kids who live in Lumbemba, a remote village in Zambia, are getting very excited. Soon, they’ll be able to go to school right inside their own village! But, most likely, they don’t even know some of the most exciting things about this future village school.
In this 2.5 minute video, ITMI’s Vicky Waraka introduces us to Asha, a widow with six children in her care and one of the women ITMI supporters helped with seed money so she could start earning a steady income!
In part 3, Charl and Steve Evers are chatting about a practicing witch’s observation of the power of the ministry in Stone Hill, what happened when one of the believing young men in Stone Hill was commanded by his fathers to make a sacrifice to his ancestors, the surprising response of youth in Stone Hill when invited out to lunch after their wrestling competition, and three things we can hold up in prayer for Charl and his ministry.
Divyashree’s dark eyes were turned slightly upward toward the middle-aged man who sat facing her. They were missing the sparkle you’d expect for her tender age…
In Part 2 of Steve’s interview with ITMI’s Charl van Wyk, Charl tells some wonderful and uplifting stories about the observed difference the Gospel makes in the lives of African believers, plus one teacher’s interesting observation about her believing students that may (but really shouldn’t) surprise us, and where Charl was and what he was doing when an outreach almost started a riot – and how he escaped.