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Surprised by the Ice Cream Man


Every day, the ice cream man pushed his cart into a small village in Vietnam. The children crowded around him to buy his treats.

Someone else came to the village to share something special with the children. Thaddeus, a Christian, came to share the good news of Jesus with them.

Many Vietnamese children have never heard about Jesus. They don’t know that he was born in a stable in Bethlehem, or that he healed sick people. No one has told them how God sent Jesus to save those who believe in him from sin.

Thaddeus stayed in the village for a month sharing Bible stories with the children. He noticed that the ice cream man seemed always to be nearby.

Then one day, the ice cream man pulled a gun out of his cart! “You’re under arrest,” he told Thaddeus. The ice cream man was really a policeman in disguise.

Prison and Freedom
Thaddeus went to prison for sharing his faith with the village children. “I loved my interrogator,” he said. Thaddeus obeyed Jesus’ command to “love your enemies” (Matthew 5:44).

“I told him that God always provides for me, so he took away my food. That night as I was praying, a Christian outside the prison wall threw a plastic sack with food in it over the wall. Every night the food secretly dropped down. The prison commander was amazed that I was not becoming thin.”

Thaddeus was set free after nine months in prison. After his release, he continued to share stories of Jesus with others.

(To protect their identities, the names of some of the people on this site and some identifying details have been changed. Some of the quotes and stories have been edited and paraphrased from the original sources for clarity.)