Saturday, February 09, 2008good to be back at it...
What you are seeing to the right is the necessary outfit of a Canadian street preacher, in the winter months. That's right, if I were a super-hero, this would be my costume. For my top half: a vest, a Fall jacket, and a winter jacket. For my bottom half, some long-johns (underwear that keep your legs warm), a pair of knitted wool sox (lovingly knitted by loving wife), and a serious pair of winter boots. Then there is a toque ("winter hat"), thick mittens, and a scarf to keep body heat in, and the cold out. All this, of course, doesn't include my regular clothes underneath, which usually includes not one, but two warm sweaters. It usually takes me 10 minutes to get "suited up", and even with all this effort, by 11pm, I'm usually frozen stiff. LOL.
It's been quite a night of preaching, out there in the marketplace. We had a number of conversations; many of them were probably not too profitable, but who knows what the Lord, in time, will do. We were mocked and maligned by a number of sinners but we were able to speak of the Lord Jesus Christ to a number of souls over the course of the night. I definitely have a number of souls I'm going to want to pray for this weekend, people the Lord brought to me tonight.
The first man I dealt with was a young, drunken man who wanted to know what my John 3:36 bible sign meant. The man's name was Michel, and Michel was, well, somewhat loud. I tried to share the Gospel with Michel from John 3:36, but trying to keep a spiritual conversation going with someone who is intoxicated is quite difficult. His friend eventually pulled him away, but not before Michel shook my hand and thanked me for my time. I truly hope the Lord will use the few words I had with him to give him Life and Light.
Right after dealing with Michel, as I was offering Bible literature to people who were walking by me, and Asian man turned to me and said:
"God is good!"
"Yes, He is," I replied. "He's been very good to me."
"He's good to everyone," he continued.
"Tell me, my friend, are you saved," I inquired.
"God saves us all," the man replied.
"No, He doesn't," I shot back.
With that, the man walked away, mumbling something about I was the only kind of person God doesn't save. So, in about a minute, this poor soul went from being a Universal Salvationist to, well, not being a Universal Salvationist. I guess that sort of thing happens when the unconverted are forced to make up their theology on the fly.
A few moments later, a security guard from the parking garage (which is right behind our preaching spot), showed up while I was preaching. It wasn't Collin, it was another young man I had never met before. I asked him if Collin was around tonight and he told me Collin has called in sick. The young man then said:
"You know, you guys are pretty committed to your faith, to be out here so long, preaching the way you do."
"Well, the Lord commands His people to preach the Gospel in His Bible, so that's what we do every Friday night," I replied.
The man just nodded and said: "Have a good night!" I hope to have further occasion to share the Gospel with this man. I thank God for the opportunity we've had to share the Gospel with Collin, the other parking garage attendant. I will pray that the Lord would continue to give us favour with these men and women who work around our preaching spot.
Then, the highlight of my night came. The old man with the cowboy hat came by. Now I've never blogged about this guy; I don't know why... he's been around for years now. Always in the marketplace getting drunk with his friend, and never missing an opportunity to make a spectacle of me. Well, there he was, right in front of me with just one of his friends who was several years younger that he...
"John 3:36," he began, "what is that AM or PM? And who's this John @#$%?"
I rolled my eyes. Not only did I not find his joke particularly funny, I had a pretty good feeling he genuinely had no clue what the Gospel of John was (nor did he want to know anything about it). Well, I didn't miss the opportunity to deal with the lost soul.
"You know, I've seen you around here for 3 years now. Always wasting your time, always drunk. Have you ever heard the expression: 'no fool like an old fool'? That sums you up pretty well. A man is supposed to increase in knowledge and wisdom over time, but you, if anything, in the last 3 years, have gotten baser and downright stupid."
Honestly, I was expecting a fiery, angry retort... but it never came. It's almost as if the man understood, right then and there, that I had remembered his past antics and that my assessment of his behaviour might not be that far off. Oh! he wasn't at all pleased with me, it's not like he offered gave me reason, but he did remain quiet, and I'm certain that that look in his eyes was one of guilt.
His friend stood there grinning, and actually started asking questions about my John 3:36 sign. I was able to share the Gospel with this man. We both ignored the occasional foolish outburst that would come out of the old man's mouth (e.g.: "that's stupid", or "I don't believe that!"), and we spoke of salvation, sin and the need for repentance. After our conversation, the man shook my hand and thanked me for speaking with him, and then, something incredible happened. The old man stuck out his hand and said:
"Alright, take care of yourself."
I truly hope this exchange, and the strange new relationship I now have with these men will carry into the future. These guys are often in the market on Fridays, so I'll be praying for further opportunities to share the Truth with them.
The Lord have mercy on whom He wills, and harden whom He wills.
That's the notes for tonight. I have a very busy weekend ahead of me, so I'm off to get some much needed sleep. God bless you all, dear readers.
Labels: Friday evangelism