Friday, September 28, 2007with a call to prayer...
A nasty virus is working its way through my house right now, so I was unable to go out preaching tonight. The last two days haven't been much fun. Anyway, rather than going without any "notes" tonight, I though I'd share with you an e-mail I got from my brother-in-the Lord who is labouring in Quebec City, Marcel.
Just like my "Friday Night Notes", Marcel usually summarizes some of the events of his night of preaching, but in this particular e-mail, brother Marcel goes on to make a desperate call for God's people to pray. A call that we should all heed to.
If you find some parts of the e-mail difficult to understand, bare in mind that brother Marcel is French.
SEPT. 21ST 2007-QUEBEC CITY STREET PREACHING
September 21st was my birthday. I am now 61 years old. I remember my father was telling me when I was young that life was short. At that time, I did not really realise what he meant because at 16-17, we think that we are going to live for ever. It seems to me that the the clock is ticking faster now.
Marcel A., Lucy and I were on St-Joseph street Friday evening. Narindra is still in Madagascar. He should come back on October 3. There were lots of people on the street because the weather was really fine. We passed more than 150 tracts. Many hundreds of people heard the gospel while Marcel A. and I preached. Many hundreds read the gospel signs we had around our necks.
As usual, we had a lot of foolish reactions to our offer of gospel tracts:
1) one man said very loudly and proudly: "It is debauchery that saves"
2) two men walking with 3 cases of beer in their hands had a good laugh looking at us and said: "You are so funny!"...
3) one man said: "Long life to Satan!"
4) many men and women blasphemed and cursed very abundantly. Our ears are really dirty when we come back from there...
While walking to our preaching spot, a lady crossed the street running towards us and asked us some money. We did not give her anything because we do not want to encourage vice. She yelled: "You are so cheap!". It is funny to observe them. At the minute they see someone who believes in Jesus-Christ, they beg for money and if we refuse, they have the most disgusting words towards us. We offered her a tract and she refused.
Very near where we preach, there is a bar. Very often, there is a gang of people outside discussing and yelling. We can listen to the music they have because it is very loud. Lucy was on the sidewalk in front of them. One man was very upset by the gospel sign Lucy had around her neck. They were about 10 (3-4 men and 5-6 women). That man began to yell obscenities to Lucy and he threatened her to force her to leave. As he was walking towards her, 2 or 3 ladies grabbed the man and restrained him. They argued with him: "Let her alone, it is her choice" and other arguments of that kind. Lucy was really frightened. She prayed the LORD and HE used pagans to bring this man to reason.
The police came near us. They stopped and read our gospel signs. It was a woman who was driving. She looked at the gospel sign which reads "For the wages of sin is death" and said very loudly: "Death..., death," and she laughed and laughed... Even police officers cannot control themselves when they are confronted with the Word of God.
When Marcel A. was preaching, a man stood on the other side of the street and began to yell very, very loudly: "SHUT UP, SHUT UP!". He crossed the street and came very near Marcel and continued to yell very loudly. He yelled: "THAT IS NO GOOD", "PUT ALL THAT TO THE GARBAGE", etc... I thought to myself: "Oh, oh, we are going to have trouble". I also prayed the LORD. He continued a few minutes and he decided to quit yelling obscenities and foolish words. I think that we are disturbing Satan's kingdom!
Marcel A. had a very long conversation with Rolland. This man says he is a christian but he does not go to any church and this for many years. Lucy and I also had a conversation with him a few months ago. He said that there is a lot of hypocrisy in the churches. We tried to bring him to reason with the Scriptures but without success.
Marcel also had a long conversation with a young man. He was trying to teach Marcel. You know, there are a lot of "teachers" on the streets these days. They try to convince us of their numerous philosophies. This one had a "Cabalistic" approach to the Bible. Marcel literally bombarded him with verses concerning sin, Christ, resurrection and salvation. He became rapidly irritated because Marcel has an excellent memory and the man had a "heavy rain" of verses!
While returning to the car, we meet a lady who stopped to read our gospel sign verses and she said very seriously: "I know that all that is TRUE!". And she continued in her sinful ways. It is something rare. Usually, they do not want to acknowledged the Bible and the truth. How can somebody come so near to the truth and prefer darkness! Oh my friends, the depth of depravity!
I also had a conversation with a man. He was also a "pagan teacher". He told me: "Do you know what is the problem with people today? They simply do not know that God loves them! The Lord will all save us!". And he began to give me long quotes of St-Francis-of-Assisi concerning the Goodness of the LORD, etc... I brought him some verses on the severity, wrath and justice of the LORD. But he did not want to listen. He was litterally blinded by his "holy wishes".
STREET PREACHING IS REVEALING
Many times, when we go street preaching, we observe the SINS of OTHERS in a very great number of ways.
This week, I saw more my own weaknesses and frailties. I realise that I do not love souls as I should. Sometimes, I do not dare to offer tracts to some people when they look too tough or agressive. This makes me really sad. I am not really ON FIRE for the LORD (at least not as I should). This brings SHAME on me. This is especially true when I see the men the LORD used during revivals. They were REALLY, REALLY ON FIRE!
One man I know (I will not mention his name to keep him humble), has a motto I have liked very, very much the first time I heard it. It is "CHRIST WITHOUT DISTRACTION!". There are so many distractions in our modern lives. We are distracted by the radio and television, by the internet (blogs, "FACEBOOK", etc.). I do not watch television anymore. But I have to learn to discipline myself with internet. It can do good but we have to be very careful. We find time to go there and sometimes passed hours there and we do not find time to pray for hours! Shame on us! Worldliness has invaded us! Let us react and go back on our knees.
I have just received 2 books from a friend of mine: "Preaching and preachers" from Martin Lloyd-Jones and "Why revival tarries" from Leonard Ravenhill. I began to read them both. They are VERY DISTURBING! Are we as faithful as we think we are? Do we love the LORD as we think we are? Are we REALLY ready to suffer for HIS NAME's sake? They show us how cold we have become and how far we are from the LORD. This makes me realise that being in a good church is not sufficient! We have got to REALLY, REALLY strive for HOLINESS and to bring REAL, REAL FEAR OF THE LORD in our lives and that HE becomes the REAL and unique centrality of our lives. Men and women in revivals passed many hours (some up to 5 to 6 hours a day in fervent prayer, were not missing any church services (in fact, the pastor had to fight with them to bring them out of the church, services lasted 7 to 10 hours, all of them were speaking every day to every body they knew about OUR WONDERFUL SAVIOUR! , they all had daily family prayers and devotions, etc... , etc..., etc... We, fundamentalists, have grown cold and we have LOST OUR FIRST LOVE!
URGENT NEED OF PRAYERS!
My partial self-examination brings me to see that I need to pray a LOT MORE! And I also need to be prayed for a LOT MORE! I truly beg you to pray for me: more holiness, more fear of the LORD, more prayer, more Bible, more intimacy with the LORD! LORD, OH LORD, I REALLY WANT TO BE ON FIRE! How can we be satisfied with less than that? Shame on me and shame on them that can identify with me!
Revival is not a dream! The LORD still can do these wonderful things HE DID in the past!
PRAISE TO OUR GREAT AND WONDERFUL GOD! LET US BRING HIM GLORY, GLORY, AND GLORY!
REAL LOVE IN CHRIST
Hope these notes are a blessing to you, dear readers. God bless you this weekend.