Compassion and Faithfulness

Part of the application process for enrollment in our Advanced Missionary Training program is a recommendation from the pastor of the applicant. Doug and Lisa Nispel applied for enrollment at BBTI in 2014. One question we ask the pastor is, “What is the applicant’s greatest strength?” For Doug, he answered “faithful” and for Lisa “compassionate.” We found the pastor’s description of them fully accurate. As students, they were a constant joy to us, along with their two daughters, Abigail and Elizabeth. They worked diligently both in the classroom and during our afternoon Work Detail.

Doug was a bus kid. His parents sent him to Red Lion Bible Church and his grandmother paid for him to attend the Christian school until the sixth grade. He heard the Gospel many times and was saved at the age of eleven. Doug lived for God for a time but became tired of feeling like an oddball and not having any friends. He decided to go his own way. As is always the case, this led to some poor choices. Even as a preteen, he began using the marijuana and alcohol that he had access to at home. However, God did not give up on Doug. When he was nearing the age of twenty, his father was gloriously saved. The booze and drugs left the home, and his father began serving the Lord. (Today he has a truck stop ministry). This had a convicting influence on Doug, and at the age of twenty-one, he surrendered every area of his life to God.

Lisa was raised by good, religious parents in a Methodist church. Then came the day when the pastor distributed to all a copy of the Good News for Modern Man and announced that it would replace their Bible. Her father had enough discernment to leave the church, and the family began attending Red Lion Bible Church. Lisa was led to Christ by a faithful Sunday School teacher who used the Wordless Book to teach the Gospel. Lisa’s father and mother began a bus route. Together, they serve faithfully in that ministry until this day.

The Nispel family arrived at BBTI in 2015 with the desire to serve the Lord in Romania. They continued raising support as students and graduated in 2016. In March 2017, less than a year after graduation, they arrived in Timisoara, Romania, and began learning the new language and culture.

A big part of the Nispel’s ministry is training believers in evangelism. They serve primarily in five or six Baptist churches, helping with outreaches and training the believers to use different methods of evangelism and tract distribution in outdoor and public settings. People are receptive and willing to listen but slow to trust Christ. Doug and Lisa look for outreach opportunities such as carnivals or festivals. They incorporate the use of Christian films in their open-air meetings. In the summer, they assist several different Baptist churches in vacation Bible school outreaches in places where there are thus far no churches.

When the Iron Curtain was torn down in the early 90s, Gospel seeds were sown in Romania and other Eastern European countries. It produced a great harvest for people who were hungry for prosperity and freedom. Thank God, that many missionaries went. Sadly, many stayed only a short time. There is, no doubt, a great need for new, church-planting missionaries in Europe, but there is also a great need for missionaries such as the Nispels who will take up the unfinished task of training believers to reach others.

Compassion took the Nispels to Romania, and faithfulness keeps them there!

Winter 2023-24