Through the brainstorming and starts and stops of the group, Findley never strayed. That’s because the original core belief resonated with him loudly.
“Nolen opened the conversation of what kind of legacy were we leaving,” Findley recalled. “Leaving a legacy for your family, leaving a legacy for God.
“The fact of leaving a legacy is awesome. When you’re gone, it will last for an eternity. It’s an awesome concept.”
An ardent believer in the power of prayer, Findley, 86, has been praying for others since he accepted Christ at age 29. He began praying for pastors and then included everyone he meets.
His mission statement is immersed in that belief.
It reads: My mission is to utilize the power of prayer to impact everyone I meet wherever I do life.
Rollins calls Finley his mentor and encourager. He has seen his conviction help change hundreds of lives.
“I’ve seen people with serious illnesses and diseases healed because of his prayers,” Rollins said. “I’ve seen people with huge financial needs met because of his prayers. I’ve seen broken relationships restored because of his prayers.
“He’s a serious prayer warrior. He prays diligently every day. If Jerry tells you he’s praying for you, you can count on that.”
Findley’s devotion to Rollins, the concept and the ministries has taken him to places like Brazil and Cambodia. Even as he shared stories of dangerous moments, gut-wrenching images and arduous days, he sounded like a curious adventurer. He chuckled, reflected in amazement and reveled in pride at the work which was achieved.
“It was a ministry, an exciting ministry,” Findley said. “That ministry continues. It’s exciting to see what God is doing.”
Findley used to visit Brazil for business. For 30 years, he ran his own company - CP Incorporated – which manufactured specialty automotive products for companies such as Cadillac, General Motors and Ford.
Wife Nancy often accompanied him; and as they learned more about the missionary side, the two would lament the conditions families had to endure.
From their hotel, they could look into the mountains and see people living in makeshift homes made of cardboard. Rains sent the crumpled cardboard down the mountain.
On the streets, they’d see mothers in the gutters with their children. The favelas, or slums, is where about 6 percent of Brazil’s population live.
“One time, we traveled by car and stopped at a stoplight,” Findley said. “My wife rolled down the window and handed out money and candy. Within seconds, we were totally surrounded. It kind of got scary. From then on, we worked through the local ministry to give.”
Rollins added, “Jerry and Nancy are people of great compassion with their involvement in mission ventures and underdeveloped regions of world. It’s doubly difficult for them. They’re so empathetic. They feel everyone’s pain and they want to respond to it.”
Escorts initially traveled with Findley’s party because of the potential danger in traveling alone.
Now, they need to be approved of by leaders of the flavelas before entering. Some are controlled by drug dealers, Findley is told.
“We’d talk to people about Jesus,” he said. “We’d be proud, ‘We did it, we did it.’ God protected us. We’d see the happiness with the kids who were happy to get food. They were teaching skills to kids. A school was there. We found out how to support them.”
In Cambodia, Findley and others built a place for women trying to escape prostitution and then protected them from pimps and those involved with sex trafficking. In 2016, the United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDs estimated there to be 34,000 prostitutes in the country, many from Vietnam.
“We taught them sewing and cosmetology skills to get out of prostitution,” Findley said.
Working with pastors, Findley and others traveled all over Cambodia where they distributed rice.
“We drilled wells and took food to them,” he said. “We were in the jungle, we visited the bush. All of sudden, when we were in the wilderness, kids came out of the woods. We’d feed them. They also needed medical care. It was quite a ministry.
“We often will be there two or three weeks. It took over 40 hours to get there. We didn’t want to drop in and come back out.”
Now 86, Findley no longer makes the trips but still helps how he can, especially through his ministry of prayer.
If you would like to share your story with the world, do let us know, we’d be delighted to shine a spotlight on you and your impact.
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Nolen Rollins, Founder & President of GPS Life Journey