Saturday, March 18, 2006no, Pat... it's an evil day...
Wow! tonight's edition of street preaching was particularly aggravating. To echo the term often used in comedy: Tough crowd!
We preached the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ from our usual place in the market for a big three hours, and the crowds were present. Most were out to celebrate "St-Patrick's Day" with a night of "drunkenness and debauchery", and I put these words in quotations because that's EXACTLY how a young lady described the night to one of her friends as they walked by me. The ungodliness and level of hatred for the Gospel was so high tonight, it was extremely difficult for me to cope. I had prepared myself emotionally and psychologically for a rough night, so I'd like to think I didn't do too badly.
Suffice it to say: "not a whole lot of saints out on St-Patrick's Day".
There were, however, a few blips of mercy, kindness and hope throughout the night. I did talk with a man named Andrew. At first, he was with a couple of other men and he had a mocking tone, but when the friends left, his attitude changed. He started asking me questions like "why I was out with a Gospel sign?", "why I thought he wasn't right with God?", and my favorite question to answer: "how could he be right with God?". I was pretty dry in my answers (I don't know if it was of the Holy Ghost, or whether it was some kind of defense mechanism), but in the end, he seemed to take to my no-nonsense approach. He thanked me for talking with him, wished me well and took a Gospel tract. Please pray that the Lord would bring Andrew back to that Gospel tract, or better yet, the Word of God.
I also received a few "God bless yous" and "what you're doing is good" from people who walked by, but all and all, these were dished out at me in much higher volume:
-"You're sick." (yes, I know, that one again.)
-"I love the devil!"
-"Jesus is dead."
Ah yes! Good times... good times. If I sound kind of aggravated, well, it's because I am. This may be a character flaw in me, but I really find it difficult to be reviled by so many, for no reason at all. I need to learn the definition of "longsuffering" I think. I covet your prayers, brothers and sisters.
Let me conclude this post with this observation:
"There is no fear of God before their eyes." (Romans 3:18)
That pretty much sums up my city, and by extention, my poor country. No fear of God. None. Zilch. Zero. Tonight, they blasphemed, they drank themselves stupid, they gave themselves over to all manner of lusts and immorality, and the preaching of the Gospel was an abhorrence.
"Who cares about God!" they said. "We want sin! And if there is a God to answer to one day, He'll give us a pass because we are too great a number to all be condemned."
That is what is in their hearts and minds, and before some scorner comments that I don't know that for sure, let me assure you I do know, for their tongues tonight clearly expressed the contents of their depraved hearts. O Lord have mercy on them. O Lord, have mercy on Canada.
"Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord." (Acts 3:19)
"Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee?" (Psalm 85:6)