Evangelism

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Evangelism

Postby Sonclothed » Sat Jul 22, 2006 10:42 am

All of the great things I have experienced isn’t preaching to thousands, the great stories comes from the one on one experiences. The preaching to thousands is fun, don’t get me wrong, but the one on one times, I walk away having personal involvement.

One such story:

I was called and asked to visit Steve at the local hospital cancer ward. Steve was a 25 year old, fighting a losing battle with his cancer that was spreading through out his body.

As I walked into his private room, I introduced myself, and asked if I could pull up a chair and sit and talk to him a little while. He reluctantly gave consent. A nurse walked in and took his vitals. I always expect the enemies last efforts to stop the witness.

We chatted on while the Nurse did her work. We talked about things in general, sports, his interest and life in general. It was obvious that he was resistant. I asked him; “Am I keeping you from something? I can come back later if you wish?”

There was no mention of Spiritual things to this point.

He blurted out, “Why has God allowed me to have cancer?” At this point I stepped out of control and the Holy Spirit stepped in. “God didn’t give you cancer. You can thank satan (it is not a typo, I don’t capitalize satan because he doesn’t rate it) for it. The Scripture says, “he is like a roaring lion going to and thro, seeking whom he may devour.” (I Peter 5:8 ). I don’t know why you have cancer, but it doesn’t change much. ‘For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.’ (Rom. 3:23) and the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus (Rom 6:23)’

I explained the fact that a wage was something we work for. It is our expected compensation for our labor. We usually have an agreed rate per hour. Death is what we get for being sinners. On the other hand a gift is something that is given freely. It is not earned, as a wage is, it is totally dependent on the giver. Once given, there is no strings attached it is yours.

God is offering you one of two choices, your wage, or His gift. It is our decision, which we want.

In John 1:12 the Scripture continues, ‘but as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: ‘ the choice is ours, will we receive Him or not.

Jesus is saying, right now to you Steve, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.’ (Rev. 3:20) Jesus is now knocking at your door.

Steve if you came over to my house, you heard the T.V. on, voices talking; and you knock; suddenly the T.V. shuts off, and you hear me saying quiet everyone maybe he will go away. Would you come back?

Let say you are really full of grace, and you do, and this time the result was the same, I ignored your knock, would you come again? Let us say you are very patient, and come back and knock again, and I say through the door, go away, maybe later. Would you come to my door again? I don’t think I would after the second time.

You know that Christ has knocked before, you said, ‘go away, maybe later.’ Well Steve, it is later. The decision is yours. You can say no, or you can open the door to your heart and invite Christ in. It is a yes or no offer. Anything except yes, is a no.”

Steve accepted Christ, but that was is only the beginning. I returned the following week. Steve had to make a decision about treatment, a very painful surgery with little chance of helping. We talked for a while, the again the Holy Spirit took over, Steve you know where you are going now. The table is set, it is perfectly alright if you go home to the Lord.

Steve lit up, eyes widened, he asked, “You mean it is ok to give up? I can stop fighting?

“Yes Steve, it is your choice, personally, I think I would rather go home.”

The lady who first called me to go visit with Steve called again two days later. Steve said good-bye to his parents, and entered eternity that night.

At that news, my spirit rejoiced in the Lord, His mercy and grace. You see, “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9
Sonclothed

Gen 2:25
5 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
NKJV
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Postby Strandloper » Sat Jul 22, 2006 1:17 pm

As you say, Sonclothed, it is never too late. Praise to the Lord for saving that one soul.
I admire your friend Steve for refusing the final treatment. When you are near the end, all the treatment can do is ruin the time you have left.
Shalom,
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Postby bullet » Sat Jul 22, 2006 2:35 pm

What an awesome story of the Lord at work through one of His people. It always amazes me to hear stories of how God uses one of us to reach out to someone who seems to have lost all hope. I have a heart for the lost, but not the training or experience to be able to help as I would sometimes like to. Although I never underestimate what God can do with a willing heart, I don't discount the abundance of training that most evangelists, ministers, etc. go through to be able to do what they do and make it seem so easy. Obviously nothing is ever as easy as it looks to the human eye, which makes it even more astounding that we are able to say just the right things in time of need, by the power of the Holy Spirit working in us.

I thank God for people like you brother, and others here in the village as well, like Living Free, who have shown themselves so willing to go where God says, "Go". There's so much turmoil in the world and the hearts of men, it's refreshing to hear tales of the Spirit moving people who need Him most.

Keep up the good works of Him who sends you!
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Re: Evangelism

Postby MatthewNeal » Sat Jul 22, 2006 2:54 pm

Sonclothed wrote:The lady who first called me to go visit with Steve called again two days later. Steve said good-bye to his parents, and entered eternity that night.


SC,

Thanks so much for your story. I ready it with keen interest.

And when I read the statement I quoted above, tears welled up in my eyes. What a joyous privilege to be a part of snatching a soul from hell's doorstep!

Matt
Last edited by MatthewNeal on Thu Nov 16, 2006 2:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Sonclothed » Sat Jul 22, 2006 4:50 pm

One of my friends that lives in Texas, had a burden to plant a church in his small area. As we prayed together about it, ny friend and brother said, "Lord, if you bless this I will make you one promise."

Five years later the Church was under construction. The planned seating was for 1,500 people. Already there were plans for expansion. When the Church was dedicated he was holding three services every Sunday morning with few seats opened. He added a Saturday service to try to keep it from being Standing Room Only. Most all other ministries were concerned about filling the pews.

Once asked to speak at the denomination General Assembly, they asked him to speak and write a book on how he acomplished such a task.

My friend declined the invitation, explaining, "The promise I made was that if God would build the Church, I wouldn't try to take credit for it." Unless the LORD builds the house, They labor in vain who build it; ( Ps 127:1)

The same is true about Evangelism. Our part is to simply tell our experience. Share what God has done for you. Like the build man, " He answered and said, "Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see." (John 9:25)

Knowing the Scriptures is a plus, not a requirement, It is the Holy Spirit's witness that wins souls, Not the wit and craft of men. Billy Graham has been called to lead millions to the Lord. you maybe called to lead one. The reward is the same. Obedience, "So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" ( Rom 10:17) That Word, the Logos, lives in each believer. Your witness is the living Word. It is by your testimony that men believe.

Never doubt how little it takes to save a drowning man, a 10 lb. fish line can pull a 250 lb man safely to shore.

As a pastor, I often reminded the congregation, Shepherds don't make sheep. Sheep make sheep. It is all our callings to share Christ. Witnessing is more than words. The way you live, the way you work through trials and tribulations. Does your life reflect that Hope of Glory. I seen saints just love people to Christ, others by their joy; "Jim, You are going through the same thing I am. I seen you at your Momma's funeral, I watched you as diaster struck. You left your home to check on others after the Blizzard. Why would you do that." The answer is one word, "Jesus." That my brothers and sisters is a greater testimony than any sermon I could muster. Your life over the years. Showing that, "Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.(Rom 8:37)

I apologize for my wordiness, but I love to talk about my Lord.
Sonclothed

Gen 2:25
5 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
NKJV
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Postby bullet » Sat Jul 22, 2006 5:02 pm

Praise the Lord!!!! Since I don't know your full background (you said all your posts on NC were deleted), are you still actively involved in evangelism? Do you still preach? I think you bring a powerful testimony to the village and I, for one, would be interested in hearing much more. Blessings bro.
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Postby LivingFree » Sat Jul 22, 2006 11:26 pm

Sonclothed,

That's a wonderful story of helping someone find Christ just when the Holy Spirit prepared his heart. I can tell a similar story.

I was serving somewhere in Kansas, in a rural area. One older man, brother to another who was a member in our church, had lived his life outside the church because of a scrap with church leaders when he married "outside the church." Now he was hardened, retired, and dying of -- you guessed it -- cancer. His wife wanted me to see him, but said "He never talks to a minister."

I went to his room. I gave my name and just said, "How are you doing." He told me, and wasn't kind about it. I stayed about five minutes, and then asked if I could return. He grunted, "I guess so."

When I went back he was all full of questions. I returned a third time. When he died I had his funeral, and his wife told me, "He died in faith." Later, at the age of 87, she confessed her faith in Jesus and was baptized. She said, "I want to make sure when I die I go to be where he is." She is in her mid 90s now, and she still writes to us, strong in her faith.
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Postby natman » Sun Jul 23, 2006 12:49 am

Sonclothed wrote:I apologize for my wordiness, but I love to talk about my Lord.


Apology not accepted. It is unessary. We love to read how the Holy Spirit has led someone to lead someone else into the arms of our dear Savior.
SON-cerely,
Nathan Powers

Get exposed to the sun, and get exposed to the Son.
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Postby jochanaan » Mon Jul 24, 2006 8:13 pm

bullet wrote:...I have a heart for the lost, but not the training or experience to be able to help as I would sometimes like to...

You don't need training or experience. You only need to listen: first to God, then to those who are crying out for Him without even realizing that's what they're doing.
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Postby bullet » Mon Jul 24, 2006 9:03 pm

jochanaan wrote:
bullet wrote:...I have a heart for the lost, but not the training or experience to be able to help as I would sometimes like to...

You don't need training or experience. You only need to listen: first to God, then to those who are crying out for Him without even realizing that's what they're doing.


I agree, but in the past I have tried to reach out to people who were hurting and trapped in sin, only to feel like I was in over my head because I had never dealt with their particular issues, and naively thought I might be able to understand what they were going through. With a little training in couneling techniques and experience in dealing with those issues, I think I could have been more effective.
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Postby jochanaan » Tue Jul 25, 2006 12:21 am

bullet wrote:...in the past I have tried to reach out to people who were hurting and trapped in sin, only to feel like I was in over my head because I had never dealt with their particular issues, and naively thought I might be able to understand what they were going through. With a little training in couneling techniques and experience in dealing with those issues, I think I could have been more effective.

*nods* Yeah, it can be a little scary when we find someone whose problems aren't like anything we've personally experienced. One of my women friends was sexually abused as a child and is also very overweight. Now, I've never been sexually abused nor overweight; but I have gone through my own self-esteem issues, as well as a painful divorce, and I have been able to listen to her and even offer some comments that seemed to help her.

I should warn you, though, that asking God for increased empathy often results in going through experiences that give pain. For some reason, He seems to choose those who have suffered themselves to help other sufferers. :?
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Postby natman » Tue Jul 25, 2006 10:45 am

I have found that most of the time, people just want someone to LISTEN to them. They are not really expecting you to solve their problem or even give them direction. They just need an ear and perhaps a shoulder or a hug.

"Witness. Witness. Witness. And, if you absolutely must, speak."
SON-cerely,
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Postby LivingFree » Tue Jul 25, 2006 11:52 am

natman wrote:I have found that most of the time, people just want someone to LISTEN to them. They are not really expecting you to solve their problem or even give them direction. They just need an ear and perhaps a shoulder or a hug.


I have also found that attentive, active listening often helps the hurting person hear themselves differently, and begin to solve their own problem. Also, asking careful questions is often much better than giving answers. Asking the questions helps them think "outside the box," or "beyond their own frontier," and can bring solutions and/or release. One example, "When you talked to God about this situation, what did God say to you?" And a follow-up question, "What would God say to you now if you asked God again?"
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Postby arom » Mon Jul 30, 2007 6:54 am

Outstanding thread. To often Christians are willing to wait for someone else to do the work. Jesus Himself commanded us to do so.

"Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age" (Matt. 28:19-20 HCSB)


I am please to hear of another going to see God, especially just before they died. I had a similar experience with my wife's uncle while on vacation just a few days before he died.

God is Good.
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Postby nudjohn » Mon Jul 30, 2007 10:56 pm

arom wrote:God is Good.

ALL the time! :D
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