Stepping Your Way To An Evangelistic Walk

Made it to a park late yesterday afternoon. Sat at a picnic table with my “laptop” and bible software, studying a scripture I read earlier in the day, more in depth. My prayer was for a soul to talk to Jesus about. 

I counted fifteen adult souls who crossed within 50 yrds of me, most lingering doing one thing or another in the park. 

My personal study was challenging making me have to be conscious about look up from it at my surroundings so as not to miss an opportunity. 

My seating was not doing my upper back and lower neck any favors. 

A squrrel enjoyed several french fries nearby. 

There was a sign on my computer which read, “ARE YOU SURE YOU ARE SAVED? YOU CAN BE! ASK HOW. 1 JOHN 5:13. My eyesight is fading and I could not see my sign from very far away, though maybe someone with better eyesight could. 

Only one person came close enough for me to speak to them. He pedaled by on a bicycle. We only said hello. 

I did not speak to a soul in the park about Jesus, but I am better for having thought about it. Awareness of souls is part of evangelism and in this way I was evangelistic yesterday. Not to mention I also participated in discipling brethren last night (another part of evangelism), as part of Anaheim’s midweek Bible study.

Today I pray for a soul to talk to Jesus about, if the Lord gives me the means to do so. I’ll strive to be aware of the souls around me and I’ll attempt to step further into evangelism – awareness of souls in need of a Savior (2 Cor. 5:14-21)… confession of Christ (2 Pet. 2:9,10)…invitation to study (Col. 4:5,6)…instruction in the will of God (1 Cor. 15:1-8)…discipling in Christian living (Heb. 10:24,25). 

Every step forward in evangelism is positive, even if that step is not as far along one day as another. When we consider all the steps we’ve taken in a week they add up to walking evangelistically. Some weeks it may seem more like a sway or pacing than a walk, but its something and our and perhaps others relationship with God will be better for it. Other weeks our evangelistic walk will be more like a sprint or marathon! 

Keep thinking souls, taking what steps you can each day, in each relationship you have with others, toward pointing them toward Jesus!

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The Early Bird…

This past Wednesday I joined the Long Beach brethren in their midweek Bible study. Arriving early I found a young man, whom I later learned was named Jerrell, playing with a radio controlled pickup across the street from the meeting house. I approached Jerrell and spoke with him about various aspects of the radio control while he entertained us with different maneuvers. As the conversation drew on and time was approaching for Bible study to begin members began showing up. Katherine Manning, being one of them, strolled across the street and greeted us, somewhat surprised to see me. They did not know I was planning a visit. After inviting us to join them in Bible study, Katherine excused hersel and Jerrell and I continued our conversation. 
I asked Jerrell if he believed in God and thought he was saved. He affirmed that he did believe and thought he was saved. I asked when and how he was saved. He could not say exactly. He generically referred to various events in his life that caused him to think about God and feel like He was with him. In response I asked if the Lord were to return right then, if he was sure he’d be invited into Heaven with him. After a short pause he said he did not know. I asked if he thought it was possible to know. He said he was not sure. I asked if he thought it desirable to know. He said yes! With enthusiastic agreement I invited him to allow me to read him a scripture, which he did. I read 1 John 5:13 which says we can know we are saved by what is written. We discussed the source of faith being what is written Romans 10:17, then turned to 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9 which he volunteered to read. This passage says that Jesus is going to return in wrath toward those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel. We discussed how knowing Jesus is knowing God (John 8:19). Jerrell confirmed that he knew Jesus as God who came in the flesh, lived a sinless life and died on the cross to provide forgiveness of sins for all who believe in Him. So we turned our attention to obeying the gospel. Reading 1 Corinthians 15:1-8 we discussed how the gospel is the message of Jesus death, burial and resurrection. I asked how someone could obey the death burial and resurrection of Jesus. Jerrell thought maybe it was by doing good. We turned to and read Romans 6:1-11 and discussed how obeying the gospel is being baptized into Jesus death, burial and resurrection. We turned to an illustration I had in my pocket We Care New Testament depicting Jesus dying on a cross, being buried in a tomb and raised back to life. Then we turned to the same illustration overlaid with a person being baptized corresponding with each act of Jesus death, burial and resurrection. I asked Jerrell what it meant to obey the gospel and be saved and he said it meant being baptized. I agreed and then shared Acts 2:38 with him to include repentance. I asked him if he was ready be baptized to be obey the gospel and be saved. After a long pause, he said he was not sure.  I asked what kept him from obeying and shared how when I came to realize my need to obey the gospel, I immediately called up someone I knew and asked them to baptized me as soon as possible.  I invited again and he said he was not ready. I suggested that more study of the subject would help him be ready and invited him to get together with me again. He agreed and we exchanged contact information. By now it was getting dark and time for Bible study across the street. I invited him to join the study, but he said he had to attend to some things at home. I encouraged him to drop in to Long Beach’s meetings, and we parted company. 

Had I arrived with just enough time to leave my car and go right into the building for study (as is often the case), I would have missed the opportunity to share the amazing news of God’s love and salvation with him. In this case the proverb, “The early bird gets the worm” proved true. I must admit that I arrived early in hopes, with the accompaniment of prayer, that I would find someone to share Jesus with. My prayer and effort were rewarded! 

Please keep Jerrell in prayer concerning making a decision for Christ in the near future. 

Keep thinking souls and perhaps, show up early to appointments looking for opportunity to share Jesus with others.

You Can Take This To The Bank

Brother Jon Roe, recent Southern California transplant to Phoenix, AZ shares a soul-winning experience:

“I just moved to Phoenix and needed to update information at Chase bank.  The banker I met was not just someone I needed to do business with, but he was also a soul.  How can I introduce him to Jesus, I thought.  I began by saying, “So, tell me about yourself”.  He said that he just moved here from Chicago and I immediately saw we had something in common.  We then talked about the adjustments we both were having to make.  I asked him if he had found a church to go to yet.  He said no.  I said, “How’s your relationship with God?”  He said, “It could be better”.  I asked him if he wanted to get together and look at some verses.  He said no.  I told him he should come and check out the church I go to and maybe his relationship with God could get better.   To my surprise (O ye of little faith), he showed up at church.  He was greeted warmly by the members.  He even came back the next Sunday and I decided I would again ask him if we could look at some verses.  He agreed to do so and we met one evening.  I again asked him about this relationship with God and he answered the same, “It could be better”.  I asked him if he had ever given his life to Christ and become a Christian.  He said he was baptized but wasn’t sure if he was saved.  “If the Lord were to come back today, would you go to heaven”, I asked.  He said he wasn’t sure.  “Would you like to be sure?, I replied.  He said, “Yes”.  “Can I tell you about how I became a Christian?”  He said, “Yes”.  I always start with 1 John 5:13 and emphasize that we can know we have eternal life….based upon what is written.  We began to look at the things written and I showed him how we must 1) Believe in Jesus (John 8:24, Matthew 16:13-17), 2) Believe in the gospel (Romans 1:16, 1 Corinthians 15:1-4), 3) Obey the gospel (2 Thess. 1:6-9, Rom. 6:3-4, Acts 2:37-38).  At the end, I asked him, “Would you like to obey the gospel?”  After some hesitation, he said, “Let’s go”.  My banker is now my brother…and you can take that to the bank.  Souls are everywhere, even at the bank.  Blessings to all of you.”

Jon Rowe is blessed to be part of numerous souls beginning saving relationships with God every year in his personal work, using the basic approach he shared above. Not that the approach itself or Jon himself is the key necessarily, but his heart for souls and willingness to make the most of the opportunities afforded him, with a focus on the gospel message. These are things we can emulate and find greater fruits of the lost being saved in our walks with God.

Keep thinking souls brethren!

Friends Are Friends Forever Only If…

Back in 1983 a religious music artist released a song titled “Friends” in which the first line of the corus read, “And friends are friends forever; If the Lord’s the lord of them.” Friends and readers, this seems to me to agree with scripture at least as far as the idea that we will be recognizable as ourselves in the life to come (1 Samuel 28:8-17, 2 Samuel 12:23; Matthew 17:3-4). However, though it seems that we will be recognizable in our life after this one, our friends will only remain our “friends” in that life if as the song lyrics go, “the Lord’s the lord of them.” And by friends I mean godly friendships between people with whom we share a common bond which mutually builds the other up in some way. 

As a person who seeks to emulate my Lord’s love for souls, I find reports about what others are allowing God to do through them for the good of people’s souls extremely encouraging and motivating. Since beginning this blog I continue inviting brethren to share with me their experiences in reaching out to souls in their lives with the saving message of Jesus. And when they do, I ask if I may post it here as an encouragement to my readers. Seeing the value of such sharing, though hindered by the sometimes daunting task of putting one’s experiences into words to be read by all, once in awhile brethren send me their experiences to post. They do so not to boast about or take credit unto themselves, but to boast of the works of God in their lives and the lives of the lost they come to love (1 Corinthians 1:31, 2 Corinthians 10:17,18, 1 Peter 2:9). They do so in hopes of encouraging and motivating YOU to follow their example (Philippians 3:17). 

Sister Kristie Morton Nevinski recently shared the following evangelistic experiences with me:  

“Hi Jeff, I had been meaning to message you about some exciting ways God has been working and to thank you for the encouragement you have given me. 

I’m in a bible study with people of all different christian backgrounds and a while back the topic of “once saved always saved” arose. I brought it up with my friend Kate from the study afterwards while we were outside letting the kids play. Although she attends a different church, I was encouraged by her perspective and we seemed to be on the same page. I’ll admit it was uncomfortable for me because I worry I will not say the right thing or that a question will be presented that I don’t know the answer to, but I’m so glad God gave me the courage to bring it up. 

A week or so later, another friend and I got to talking about faith, works, and salvation. I mentioned that although baptism without belief means nothing, that I believed that the bible taught baptism played an important role in salvation. We were distracted by the kids and the conversation changed course, but in my heart I wondered, has Kate been baptized? In the past I had somewhat assumed that she had been, but I honestly didn’t know. Again, it was a little awkward but I went back to that topic a while later, referring to my comment and asked if she had been baptized. She answered that no she had not been but felt that she should and had wanted to be for three years! She wan’t making excuses but said that although she had believed in Jesus for years that at her church you had to take a class first and she just hadn’t done it. When I told her she could be baptized at anytime she wanted…like this afternoon…she almost cried and was just so excited. She talked to her husband about it and also wanted to give her out of town family time to plan to attend. This was a very good thing because we really needed some time to stop and look at the scriptures. My husband leads a bible study in our neighborhood which Kate’s husband attends so it was nice that relationship was already established. Kate and her family all came over for dinner and then my husband led us in a conversation/study about what the bible says about baptism. After reading about what baptism is and a few examples from Acts (ending on the Ethiopian Eunuch), Kate and her husband both seemed a little taken aback and realized that water baptism played more of a vital role than they realized. That’s the short version, but she was immersed the next evening at our church and many of her extended family members attended. I feel so humbled because what we did was so little, but God did BIG things with it!

Another friend that I would appreciate prayers for is Julie. She is from overseas but has lived here several years. The church they attend is due to family ties on her husband’s side. Julie believes baptism is important but doesn’t want to upset the family by not joining that church and not getting baptized there. Just bringing it up to them has caused quite a stir. She feels her family was more accepting of her faith before she even knew about Jesus than they are now. I hope to study the bible with her to help her develop a more personal interest in study the truth, and to help give her courage to be immersed despite her family situation.” 

Kristie’s example is wothy of emulation. Allow this sister’s example move us to urgency and courage in engaging our friends and acquintances in conversation about salvation in our Lord Jesus! 

Is the Lord, the Lord of your friends? I pray He will become so today!

Born Again! 

“Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; this man came to Jesus by night and said to Him. ‘Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.’ Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:1-3

Brethren rejoice with the angels and saints meeting in Anaheim! Ron Lewis was born again, obeying the gospel of Jesus Christ through baptism in Jesus name Saturday February 25th in the four o’clock hour! See pictures below.

Ron visited the Anaheim assembly of the church for the first time February 12th 2017. Being a former Catholic, but recently unable to continue meeting with them due to access issues caused by limited mobility, he decided to give us a visit. Actually, ten years earlier, while still attending the Catholic church with his wife, he saw our meeting house sign and wondered who we were. Ten years later, after the death of his wife and the onset of mobility issues, he decided to pay us a visit. We are so glad he did!

During his first attendance with us on a Sunday morning, we conversed quite a bit getting to know one another. In that conversation I asked Ron how he came to visit us and if he believed he was saved and if how. He shared his story of Catholic conversion. I asked questions about his beliefs about Jesus, repentance and baptism. We talked about the purpose and form of baptism found in the Bible. Two things that were new to him. I encouraged him to consider being baptized biblically. He said he wanted to think about it. Ron remained after services and joined us for a monthly feast with the saints meeting in La Verne, CA hosted at our meeting house. Everyone got to know Ron a little bit and he them. 

Upon Ron’s second visit I brought the topic of obedience to the gospel again, to which Ron requested I visit him at his nearby apartment later in the week to study the topic. We studied a couple of hours two days in a row that week and Ron decided he wanted to obey the gospel by being baptized! He was not able to do it that day or those immediately following, so we set our sights on the coming Saturday. 

Duane and Janice Shelton, William Kheirandish, Holly and Zoe Yost, David and Sandra Norris and myself were present, with me doing the baptism and David assisting. It was a beautiful day! There is nothing quite as marvelous as someone’s rebirth, though one’s physical birth certainly compares. 

What do you do with visitors? Do you know what brought them to your assembly? Have you any visitors who have been coming for awhile? Do you know their faith story? Has anyone personally given them an invitation to obey the gospel of Jesus Christ? 

How about people in your assembly who have visited so many times that you hardly see them as visitors anymore? What do you know about their faith story? Have they been personally invited to obey the gospel of Jesus Christ?

If you have people in your assembly or any part of your life, whom you are ashamed to ask about their faith and invite to obey the gospel so long after having knowing them, apologize for it and ask the next opportunity you get. It is the most loving, caring thing you can do for their soul. If they die having been faithful to the assembly, but not having obeyed the gospel, they died outside of Christ and are destined for the wrath of God (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9). 

Ron was asked about his faith and invited to obey the gospel upon his first visit to the Anaheim Sunday morning assembly of saints. By his third visit he came as a new brother in Christ – born again! 

Keep thinking souls!

 

Opportunities Abound!

Opportunities to share the gospel of Jesus Christ abound. Just this morning in less than thirty minutes of reading friend’s Facebook posts, I was made aware of three encounters brethren had with the lost! These encounters occurred at a church meeting, a fast food restaurant and a hotel lobby desk. At least two (restaurant and hotel desk) were the result of strangers breaking the ice by engaging Christians in conversation, which the Christians turned into spiritual conversation. The third (church meeting) was the result of a foreign college student’s visits during which she heard the gospel invitation and answered it by following Jesus in baptism for the forgiveness of her sins (Acts 2:36-38, Romans 6)!

Also just last night while attempting to provide a ride to a new convert and new addition to the Anaheim church for a midweek meeting, another opportunity presented itself. The friend of this new brother was visiting him and at first introduction voiced disinterest in spiritual conversation, but before the conversation ended, was expressing thanks and interest in looking into spiritual things further (more on this in a post to follow this one). 

I highly suspect there have been many more opportunities, among even just those I know, to share the will of God and saving message of Jesus with the lost this past week than I have been made aware of. There are surely many unreported and certainly unbroadcast evangelistic encounters brethren have had with the lost any given week. Encounters that evidence that the fields of souls are still white for harvest!

Brethren, opportunities abound for the chance to share the saving message of Jesus with the lost. The initial message of hope and forgiveness in Jesus can be shared in a very short conversation. The facts needed to bring someone to an informed decision of obedience to Christ for salvation can be shared with the addition of relatively little more time. 

Look with me for the many opportunities that present themselves or can be found with a little effort and be committed to making the most of them! God guide and equip us in our efforts to His glory!

The People Factor

Engaging the work of an evangelist, I find myself with plenty of work that I can do from my home (i.e. devoted prayer, personal Bible study, Bible reading, lesson preparation, various forms of correspondence with brethren and the lost, extra Biblical reading, planning and organizing the work, blogging, etc.). You add in two hours of exercise with showering, an hour breakfast, lunch and dinner with the family, daily chores, etc.) and you have a full day, little of which has to do with being around lost people. 

Add in delivering Bible lessons, visiting various assemblies of the saints and the drive time it takes to do so, discipling the saved, recreating with brethren, family time, etc. and there is even less time around the unsaved. 

All these uses of time, as beneficial and necessary as they are, sometimes present a real challenge to sharing the saving message of Jesus with the lost. Now it should be noted that some of the work and recreation mentioned, if done with the right perspective, lends itself to multiplying the potential for spreading the gospel to the lost by better equipping others to go out (Ephesians 4:11-16). However at the same time it must also be acknowledged that the fewer lost people we encounter, the fewer opportunities there are to invite them to know Jesus as their Lord.

It seems that there is no big revelation in all of this, though recently this equation – interaction with fewer lost people + fewer gospel invitations = fewer people being saved – hit home to me (again), and reawakened me. That much of my activity from day to day can keep me from opportunity with the lost begs reflection on my part. As one who loves the Lord, shares His desire for none to perish (2 Peter 3:9) and as a beneficiary and possessor of the saving message of Jesus, I need to seek opportunity with the lost.

Eight life situations, lifestyle choices and personal attitudes come to mind that also might limit Christian’s exposure to the unsaved. I will not share their specifics here, because this post is more about the situation of not being around the lost itself than the various causes of it. 

When it comes right down to it, if we truly share God’s desire for none to perish but for all to come to repentance, we must find ways to be among the lost, be committed finding a way to share the gospel and/or support others to do the same. The more intentional and involved we are in meeting this need, the greater blessing we will find in its fulfillment!

I have made it a personal goal this year to increase my influence among the lost by striving for opportunity to share the gospel invitation with someone weekly. Minimally this has the potential to result in fifty-two invitations for the unsaved to be saved. I highly suspect pursuit of this goal will result in more invitations than the minimal. I have not kept a strict record of the gospel invitations I offered directly to individuals in 2016, but I would suspect it was not more than fifteen. 

Wow, as I write this, that seems a very small number! Much smaller than is acceptable for me. Out of those fifteen invitations or so one person was found to already be a Christian and five others accepted and obeyed the gospel to be saved! The potential for at least fifty-two invitations this year excites me! Your prayers for my meeting this goal would be greatly appreciated. 

By gospel invitation I do not mean only mentioning Jesus or that I’m a Christian or inviting people to join me in meeting with the saints, or even studying the Bible with me, as good as these are. By gospel invitation I mean sharing the saving message of Jesus coming to earth, living sinlessly, dying on a cross and shedding His blood there to accomplish the only avenue of forgiveness of sins, being buried for three days, rising from the dead, ascending back to heaven in a glorified state to reign with His Father, and offering all who believe these things and follow Jesus in baptism, forgiveness of sins and eternal life! This is the gospel invitation and power of God unto salvation (Romans 1:16, 1 Corinthians 15:1-8, Romans 6). 

How about you, do you want people to be saved? How much are you around unsaved people? How might you increase your exposure? 

Have you prepared yourself to share the gospel? What do you need to do to get better prepared? How much do you encourage your brethren to share the gospel? How can you encourage your brethren more or better?

Petition God to send out workers into His harvest and be prepared to be part of God’s answer to your prayer (Matthew 9:38). 

Jeff Yost’s Evangelist Report September – December 2016

Hello fellow saints! I trust this finds each of you thriving in your walk with our Lord Jesus.
The work in California marches on, reaching into the lives of the lost and shining the light of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Since August 2016, Anaheim brethren have seen the Lord grow His church in number by three – Sergio and Juan and Marilyn! Sad to say, only minimal contact has continued with Juan and Marilyn after their conversion. At this writing they do not return correspondence. Unsure of the reasons for their pulling away from us, we ask that you pray for their growth as Christians. On a brighter note, Sergio continues with us, studying with David Norris and I once a week and meeting with the saints Sundays and Thursdays. Please pray for Sergio’s continued growth in the faith.

Cesar who obeyed the gospel June of 2016 continues with the Anaheim brethren in first day and midweek meetings. He also remains in a series of discipling Bible studies hosted by various Anaheim members. Please pray for his continued faithfulness and growth.

Anaheim’s online Bible studies continue to attract new students regularly. Four Anaheim brethren conduct these studies, each taking turns adopting students as they sign up. To date we’ve only had personal contact with one student. Others study for awhile and then drop off for awhile and then complete another lesson or two. For Anaheim study helpers, online studies are a labor of patient endurance in sowing and watering from afar. We hope some day to know some of our students as brethren. Your prayers for our efforts are appreciated.

As of September of this past year, our family became residents of California. Residency required that we have our car smog checked. Our pickup was exempt due to its age and being a diesel. This check presented an opportunity to initiate two Bible studies, one of which resulted in the addition of Sergio (mentioned above) to the Kingdom of God! The other Bible study is with a man named Eddie and is more of a study about the Bible – its reliability and origin. Prayers are appreciated.

October of 2016 took the Anaheim congregation’s outreach efforts to a city park adjacent to the meeting house for a devotional (singing, scripture reading with comments and prayer). Canvasing for the effort did not result in any outside attendees from the neighborhood, but did initiate a study that took place a week later. It was this effort that brought us Juan and Marilyn. Besides contact with Juan and Marilyn our devotional brought the Anaheim church together in a cooperate outreach which attendees found edifying. Our next park devotional outreach is scheduled for March 2017. We look forward to planting and watering some more and perhaps being able to harvest some of the resulting fruit. Your prayers for this effort are appreciated.

In December, the same Burger King, where Fred Flory and I met now sister Marylou Aguilara in 2014, produced an opportunity to share the gospel with two more people – Lawrence and Matthew. Both men are enrolled in a substance abuse ministry limiting their avenues for contact. Conversation revealed that Lawrence had obeyed the gospel previously, but Matthew had not. Matthew was invited to put on Christ in baptism for the forgiveness of his sins that hour, but hesitated, saying he wanted to consider it further before making a decision. I encouraged him that today is the day of salvation and today if he hears His voice, not to harden his heart. We parted company having exchanged contact information. I hope to meet with these two men again in the near future to further encourage them in the Lord. Your prayers for this future contact are appreciated.

Contact with other southern California congregations in the area has come through attending Long Beach’s Thanksgiving weekend meeting, LaVerne’s monthly visit to Anaheim for a meal, Norwalk hosting of the monthly song fest, a couple of drop ins to studies at the Anaheim West, Newland Street and State College Blvd. church’s of Christ near our rental house. I also participated in a soul winners worshop at Vermont avenue church of Christ in Los Angeles.

Thank you for your interest, prayers and support of the Lord’s work here in Southern California! Your partnership with us in this work means so much to our family and the saints here.

Keep the faith and share the gospel brethren!

Jeff Yost

P.S. Keep an eye out on Facebook for this report as a computer game in the near future. Yes, a computer game! Zoe is creating a computer game themed around this report using a program called Bloxels Builders. Only Bloxels Builders users will be able to actually play the game, but we hope to video our game play and share the video with you all on Facebook and perhaps on YouTube in the near future. Below are a few pictures of the first two panels of the game. The game begins reading the Bible and leaving one’s house to share the gospel (panel 1  below). The first challenge is destroying doubts about sharing the gospel (second and third panels below). Plans for the rest are 1. a stop by a smog check facility to battle polution and invite the owner to consider the gospel 2. a stroll through the park passing out flyers, singing, Bible reading and praying 3. stopping at a fast food restraunt to gobble up some food and share the gospel 4. and finally…well I wouldn’t want to give it all away just yet. All along the way being encouraged by Bible verses to share the gospel and battling doubts in doing so.

Part of the first and second pannels of the game. Players begin in a house reading from the Bible (black book with white cross on table) a passage encouraging them to share the gospel with the lost (left). Leaving the house they enter a field of doubts about sharing the gospel. 

Part of the second pannel of the game. In the field of doubts players look to the Bible (black book with a white cross on it) to find further encouragement to share the gospel. They also open the treasure chest which equips them with a jet pack enabling them to fly into the air and destroy all the doubts about sharing the gospel flying about. 

Answered Prayers

Last Sunday night I requested prayer for finding opportunity to share the gospel with the lost at least every week of this year. The following Monday morning I took a bike ride from our house to the Burger King close to the church’s meeting house. On the way I prayed the ideas of the song, “Lead Me To Some Soul Today.”

During the hour I was at Burger King a man by the name of Mike approached my table and asked me to buy him something to eat. I asked him what his situation was and discussed with him particulars about what he shared. I learned he was 33yrs old, homeless roaming from friend to friend’s and his parent’s house. He did not finish school, did not currently have a job and was not looking for one. When I asked if he believed in God he hee hawed around about it and did not really give an answer. He said he did not have any inclination toward religion, stating that he wanted to live life his own way.  When I asked what he thought would happen in at his death he did not have an answer. I asked if he’d been to any funerals. He said he had. I asked what one common phrase he’d heard at every funeral. He said, “They are in a better place.” I asked where that place was. He said he supposed Heaven. I asked if he wanted to be in a better place when he died. He answered yes. I suggested to him that Heaven with its reward or Hell with its punishment is every person’s destiny after death. I asked which he’d prefer. He said Heaven. I asked how he thought he could go there. He did not have an answer. I asked if I could read a passage to him which he allowed. I read 2 Thessalonians 1:3-10 to him. We discussed what it meant to know God, focussing our discussion on who Jesus was and what He has done for us in light of our sins (the gospel). I forgot to ask if he believed in what I had just shared about Jesus. Big oversight on my part. Instead I asked how he could obey the gospel (i.e. Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection). He was unsure. I shared with him the ideas in Romans 6 which we discussed them briefly. I suggested that he could be saved and begin the abundant life with Christ that very hour. Mike thanked me for the discussion and went and bought some food with the money he already had and some change I gave him from my pocket.

Mike sat across the dinning room from me and ate his meal. As I left, I dropped by his table to share my contact information with him and encourage him to answer God’s call to salvation and abundant life in Jesus. I also informed him that if he desired to discuss the topic further in the future, to give me a call.

This was the beginning of an answer to prayer, the completion of which I anticipate will be at Jesus return if He should return this year or my death should I die this year or the end of this year. God is faithful and prayer effective!

“Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving; praying at the same time for us as well, that God will open up to us a door for the word, so that we may speak forth the mystery of Christ, for which I have also been imprisoned;” Colossians 4:2,3

My prayer for you is that God open your eyes to what is likely many opportunities in your life for sharing the gospel with the lost. Also that He give you the courage, strength and wisdom to make the most of them!

Keep thinking souls bethren!