An encounter with “Jesus”

April 3, 2016

We must never underestimate the power of one encounter for Jesus. I was reminded of this yesterday.

While traveling north on the bus, i stopped off at a local Walmart to use the restroom and pick up some water. While at the water aisle, i reached up to grab a bottle when i heard, “Hey! It’s good to see you again! Remember me?” My eyes immediately fell upon his name badge, which read “Jesus”. Bing! “Yeah! I remember you! At the neighborhood market close by where i live”.

Here we were…..

Approximately 6 months ago, i pulled into the neighborhood market parking lot and quickly noticed the “cart pusher”. I walked over to him to say hi. Then i noticed his name tag saying “Jesus”. I smiled and said that i really liked his name. Then of course, we asked him if he knew Jesus. He said that he did. We had a great visit in the parking lot that day.

Now…..

Approximately 6 months later, 5 miles north, and at a different store, here he remembers me. I was amazed. I complemented him for his remembrance, and of course knowing all the time that it was the Lord indeed that brought it all to pass. I asked him what God was currently doing in his life, and he shared a testimony of how God blessed him recently by being able to return to Walmart after quitting his last store. He realized that it was a mistake and that God showed mercy upon him and what a blessing it was to be able to work. We stood there sharing for a while, then parted knowing that we would see each other again.

One encounter can make a difference. We must never underestimate it. Go Jesus!

name-tag

Seeing and hearing

March 23, 2016

Like anything else in life, if we don’t use it or practice it on a regular basis, we can become less acquainted with that which we used to do on a regular basis.

This past Saturday, i was seeking God and wanting to go out again and be led of the Spirit to where He wanted me to go. This is a big part of the ministry that the Lord has given me and called me to over the years. I have seen some really divine moves of God into this realm of the Spirit. My heart craves for more of the Spirit of God to “see” and to “hear”, then to move into that realm.

As we were waiting upon Him, He soon gave us the route to take and the place to go. We were to head out on foot east, then turn north and walk up to the “Target” store. As we walked, we prayed, and at the same time looked around to see if there was any people around that He might be leading us to. During the approximate mile long walk, there was no one who we sensed we were to talk to. Soon we were at the Target store and walked into the restroom. Once inside, we spotted a young guy washing himself at the sink. We knew immediately that he was the one to speak to. However, not at the present time.

We left and went outside after hearing to wait out there for him to come out. After a few minutes, we looked ahead down the walkway and spotted him. Our immediate thought was “wow, he sure looks different from when he was under the lights in the restroom”. We proceeded to follow him. Up ahead, we saw him take a left into the store next door. We heard to wait there for him to come out. After waiting a few, he comes out, and we say to him, “Hey brother! Come on over here and tell me what God is doing in your life”. We saw that he had a shirt on that had a small cross on it and a ministry name under it.

He began to share his testimony of being saved right after getting out of prison, and being now clean for 30 days. He shared how God had delivered him and how thankful he was. I asked him if he has been tempted to use again since being clean. He said “oh yes”. I then heard that i was to pray for him regarding this help. So i asked him if i could pray for him. He smiled and said “sure!”. As we did, we really prayed for his protection. We covered him in the armor of the Lord, from his head to his toes. When finished, he was blessed and encouraged. We soon parted our ways. He went down the walkway, i took off to my left and went across the parking lot.

After about 10 minutes and turning to my right to follow the sidewalk, i look up ahead to the intersection and i see him and a guy standing with him at the light. As i walked up, i immediately noticed that the guy that was with him was the guy that i originally saw in the bathroom. I said to him, “Hey you were the one who i saw in the restroon”. He said that he remembered seeing me also. I then was amazed at what had just been revealed to me…..

Here i was in the presence of these two guys, one who i thought was the one from the restroom in which i prayed with, the other who i didn’t pray with which was the guy from the restroom. Just how did my “seeing” and “hearing” play into this all? Was God once again just showing his sovereignty? Would things of changed out differently if i were to of “saw” and “heard” differently? Was this just how it was all to play out, i.e. the guy that i prayed with was the reason why i was to go to “Target” in the first place?

I find it all interesting.

Then the guy introduces me to the other guy. He quickly shares his testimony of being saved and how he was also clean from addiction. He lit up as he was sharing about God’s power to save and keep him. They were both there that day to also collect money at the intersection for the ministry that they were a part of. All three of us rejoiced at God’s goodness and how our divine appointment all transpired.

Someday we will see clearly, see completely. Until now, i endeavor to “see” and “hear” more clearly as i approach the gates of heaven.

“My fate is sealed”

August 10, 2015

I had just finished walking up by the freeway that leads through downtown and was circling back around when i noticed that there was a different guy at the off-ramp holding his cardboard sign. I walked over to him and said Hi, reached in for some change and a “Born of the Spirit” card. After a short talk about the card, he tells me that he has died twice and went to hell each time. Then he said something that really made me jump up and take notice. He said that the last time this happened, he was asked by God to give up his hatred. He refused to do so, so he said……

“My fate is sealed”.

I then proceeded to ask him about Jesus to find out where exactly he stood with him. I asked him if he had been born again and if Jesus was his Lord and Savior. He said that he did not believe that he needed Jesus to get to God. He believed that he could go straight to God and bypass Jesus. I proceeded to tell him about the cross and the sacrifice that Jesus paid for him and that if he would believe so, Jesus would forgive his sins and he would not have to pay the wages for them which is death. Also that by receiving the forgiveness through Jesus, his fate in hell is not sealed. I told him that he is believing a lie that comes from the father of lies, Satan.

I then said, “It is quite possible that God would send this little nobody in a red shirt to remind you of His Son Jesus and what you could have today by believing in him”. He listened, but refused. At the end of our visit, the Holy Spirit had me get rather straight with him. I pleaded with him that he did not have to believe a lie and that Jesus is there waiting to forgive his sins so he would not have to go to the real hell and spend eternity apart from God.

Soon i parted. I am praying and believing that God in his love and mercy will still continue to reach out to this man before it’s too late.

A very sad encounter. Believing that your fate is sealed? But yet, not believing in the One who makes it all possible for one’s fate to not be sealed? Sounds like a lie to me.

“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Rom.6:23)

“Out the gate”

July 23, 2015

gate

It’s what i call it when you go out the door (or it could be a gate) and God has someone immediately there in your pathway. It could be right as you open the door and there stands somebody, or it could be within a few feet. Either way, there is a person there. Now the question here is, do I notice the person? And if I notice them, do I care? Am I in too much of a rush to even want to notice them? And, if I do indeed notice them, so what? Do I just think it is life and so what?

I am convinced that God is always moving people, and causing them to be at a certain place in a certain point of time so someone can reach them with the most important message of all time, the gospel. And as i have always said, “He saved us to reach people for Him”. He does the placement, then we are to do the seed planting. And of course, He causes the growth.

The key is that when we go “out the gate” we are in the Spirit?. We are quickened by the Spirit. We are watching, looking, seeing, and hearing. This of course must have started while we were behind the four walls, and then moved out into the world for the day.

Here are two recent examples of what i am talking about.

A couple of days ago i went out my front door to go get my car that was parked a couple of blocks away from the previous night. Where i live, parking is at a premium. The short street has six apartment complexes. And while there is some rented spaces off the street, most of us park on the street.

As i walked away from my front door and turned left, i immediately saw this guy standing there on the lawn staring at an orange tree. I asked him what he was up to. He told me that he was placing “fruit fly” traps in the tree. He then explained a little about his job with the state. Our conversation included a chat about the nice weather we were having that morning. As he was packing up his stuff i asked him if he was a “follower of Jesus”. His reply was “well, not as much as I should be”. I then encouraged him that God is not far away, and that all he needed to do was to turn towards him. And by doing that, God would surely meet him right there. He left thanking me for the  reminder.

Today, while i was at work and coming out from the back room, through the doors (out the gate) and onto the sales floor, i immediately saw this guy pass in front of me on the main aisle. He was holding a bible and reading it as he walked along. I said, “hey! what are you reading?”. He stops and shows me. I read it so that he can hear it.

“Now brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death.”

“And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end shall be saved.” (Mk.13:12-13).

I told him to not hate those who will do this. And i also said that sometimes those who are closest to us, i.e our families, are the ones who we could receive the most persecution from. He had this look on his face which seemed to read….. “I see. I get what this is saying”.

He leaves and i say, “God bless you!”. And off i go to put some meat away on the shelf🙂.

I hope that we will all be more encouraged to be in the Spirit when we go “out the gate”, knowing very well that God could have somebody there waiting for us for His plan and purpose.

God’s love, all about people

July 20, 2015

Let us always be reminded and never forget that God and his love is all about people. “For God so loved the world (people) that he gave his only begotten Son,”
If we are saved it is for people. We are called and gifted to reach people.
I love how God moves people, places people, in our path so that they would hear one more time about His Son. That’s love.
If we are “in the Spirit” we will not miss out on the opportunity.

Today i was at the cross walk, and this lady is standing next to me. I’m looking straight forward waiting for the light to change. Out of the corner of my eye i noticed her look over at me real quick. When she did, i sensed that God was up to something.
I get on the bus and sit next to the window. And who comes down the aisle? And where does she sit? Yep just like a magnet🙂. I believe that God can and does move people to his own choosing.

We soon get on the train together and spend the next 30 minutes conversing. She is currently a “Buddhist”. She was raised in a Christian home though. It was just God and his love reminding her again about His Son. We spread the seed. God gives the increase.
Pray for her tonight.

God’s love, 3 guys, and a “Jesus Bus”

January 17, 2015

Last night we were checking in with Holy Spirit to see if we could get a jump on where we might be going. Sometimes He lets us know in advance, other times not. This was one of those times where He laid a particular street upon my heart. Sometimes it is certain areas, corners, or even pictures of where we are to be. In any case, when this happens, it goes from what He places in the heart, then to the mind. Such was the case that it was indeed 82nd Av.

For the first hour it was relatively quiet as we traveled via bus and light rail to get there. Once we made it to 82nd transit center, we ask the Holy Spirit where to go and what to do. As we looked both directions, we sensed that the left was the way. As we walked, we prayed. After about 6 to 8 blocks, we sensed that it was time to jump on the bus and head south. The bus came and off we went. A couple of Jesus cards passed out with little feed back. After a mile or so, we knew that there was a Walmart ahead to get some water and a snack. So we headed that way. That was done. So we again hopped the bus and made our way south.

Again, pretty quiet on the bus. As I looked out the window to my right, to my surprise, I spotted the “Jesus Bus”. Yep. There it was parked on a side road just off 82nd. As the bus came to the next stop, I immediately jumped up with not a lot of thinking involved.🙂 As I looked over at the bus, I noticed a guy with his dog standing on the sidewalk singing and playing his guitar. Nice I thought. We introduced ourselves and spent the next few minutes sharing what God had been doing in our lives. He shared about the ministry that the Lord has called him to. How he travels all over the United States with his dog in the Jesus Bus. God brings people of all kinds across his path. Many are blessed, some can’t stand the bus, and some get saved🙂

After a while I was moved upon to head across the street where there happen to be a bank that I bank with. I was off to get him some gas money. After I returned, this other guy shows up who is also a believer. He shares a little about his experiences with Jesus.

Then we all noticed a car in the middle of the road, just to the left of where we were talking. It had stalled and cars were trying to snake their way around to keep going. We then all took off to help him push his car to the curb. Once at the curb, the driver gets out to thank us all. A short way into our conversation, the other believer takes off, and now its just me, Cas (the owner of the Jesus Bus) and David, the guy whose car gave out on him. Oh, and lest I forget, God was there too🙂

A short way into our conversing with David, I said to him, “Hey, where ya at with Jesus?” This begin our conversation in this time of divine appointment🙂 He began to tell us where he stood with God. What he believed now. He said that he used to go to church and study the Bible. He assured us that he believed in God, only that he wasn’t too sure about Jesus these days and the Bible. My new friend Cas, led by the Spirit, shares all the right scriptures that David needs to be reminded about. I assure him in love, that he is indeed responsible for what he knows. Especially what he knows of the Bible. He listens well. We remind him how much God’s loves him, and that through His love, He even allowed his car to stop right next to some guys and a “Jesus Bus”. What a God! Right.10734117_1491414041121922_717046348752541166_n

Once again. God is perfect and exact in all His ways. Nothing is “happen chance” with Him. His love is just plain too powerful to let one go without continue reminders🙂

Homeless can collector gets his teeth stolen

December 19, 2014

Had a bad day? How would you like to be homeless and collecting cans for a living, and then have someone take your coat which had your dentures in the pocket?

I just got on to the train platform from the bus today when i noticed him sitting at a bench and then jumped out of his seat in anger. He was very upset about something for sure. He kept talking out loud as he went through his backpack in hast looking for something. I walked behind him and went down a little and prayed for him.

Over the last two years we have had some good conversations with him. He is a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, and knows the Bible better than most I’ve seen. I will never forget one time about a year ago. I was on the back of the bus talking to a young guy about his need to be saved, when all of a sudden this homeless friend jumps in with all the right scriptures. I just sat back in amazement as to how the Holy Spirit orchestrates at just the precise time with just the right scriptures and the right people. This friend captured this young guys attention by not only sharing the scriptures, but by giving his testimony that made the guy really listen to him.

So after standing there and watching him in his frustration, I walked over to him and said “Hi”. He immediately calmed down and shared with me what had happened. He said that two days ago he was doing his usual thing of taking his cans to a local Walmart to get money. While he was there, he took off his coat which unfortunately had his dentures in the pocket. After he had finished putting all his cans into the counter machine, he turned around to get his coat and it was gone. Somebody had lifted it. Its winter here and stealing from everyone is a common way of life for most of the homeless. He was the victim.

After telling me what had happened, he began to change and thank God for what he still had. The clothes on his back. His shoes. His health. He also gave testimony about a couple of healing’s that God had done in the past for him.

After listening to him change by remembering how good God has been to him and what he has done, I asked if I could pray for him and could we believe that God would bring his teeth back to him. He also shared how there might be a possibility of getting a new pair through the place that he had got this pair from. He said that he is checking into it. We then prayed and believed that God was going to be glorified through this provision.

The train soon came and we both got on. We continued to listen to him share about his life and how it fails in comparison to the apostle Paul. He brought up all kinds of scriptures that related to the apostles trials, testimony’s etc. He then shared something with me that didn’t surprise me, but I didn’t know it about him. At one time in his life he taught the scriptures to other believers in his church. This didn’t surprise me because I knew from past experiences with him, that he indeed did have the gift of teaching.

I mention to him the scripture that says that “the gifts and callings of God are without repentance”. His eyes began to water and he wipes them with his hand. God is reminding him of his love for him. I just assured him that all he has to do is turn back to God at times like these and be obedient to what God shows him.

While he was getting encouraged and excited by sharing the scriptures with me, his stop comes. He shakes my hand and says goodbye, then goes out the door only to turn right around and come back in. He said that he couldn’t leave. This was too good. So for the next few more stops we continued to be blessed together. Finally, he gets his pack together and leaves out the door on the next stop. As he leaves, he says, “Wow! Every time you show up, God really gets a hold of me!”. I point my finger up and say, “It’s all God! He loves you!”. He smiles, and off he goes.

Please pray for him.

Darkness before light

June 26, 2014

Tonight at the mall gathering one of my favorite thought provoking scriptures was brought up…..
The thought…..
In the beginning God created the earth. And the earth had no form, and it was void.
Picture that, if you can.
Then….get a glimpse of this while you’re still seeing a earth with no form and void of anything….
Only darkness was found upon the face of the deep.
Was there anything or anyone that was moving out there? Anyone or anything alive? Hello!
“And the Spirit of God moved”……..
Where?
“upon the face of the waters” in utter darkness. There was the Spirit of God found.
Before light even existed.
Now wrap your brain around that…….
What a God!

(see Genesis 1:1-2)

The dead and lost son

June 26, 2014

The beautiful story of a dead and lost son, commonly known as the prodigal son, is an allegory of a selfish, wasteful life that through the process of being stripped to nothing and hitting rock bottom, finds redemption.

After he hit rock bottom, the first ray of hope we find is “But when he came to himself,”. Here we see that he began to see his need. Without “need” there is no turning back.

Then he purposes what he is going to do.
“I will arise and go to my father,”
He then purposes what he is going to say.
“I have sinned against heaven and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son…”

After he purposes, he then follows through with his purpose.
“And he arose and came to his father.” He then confessed his sin and his unworthiness.

Then the father was quick and right there ready to forgive and give him his best, the “Best robe”, and “A ring on his hand”, and “Sandals on his feet”.
Then….. the father has a feast prepared along with a big party.

Then, lest we forget, the father makes a very important statement about his son. “he was dead”. “he was lost”.
Certainly the father was not talking about the sons physical death because he never died. But, he was talking about a spiritual death. This shows how sinning against the Father brings spiritual death that makes one lost from the Father.

In the end of the story, the father says to the other son that was jealous and angry about what his brother was receiving,
“It was right that we should make merry and be glad (threw a big party)
Why? “for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.”
What a God!
(see Lk.15:11-32)

He sends them….

June 26, 2014

Over the years one of the most awesome things to see at our mall gathering on Tuesday nights is how people are drawn right to us.

Tonight was no different. I had been sitting there at the table and chairs as usual, just waiting. I was going over some notes from the last week out on the streets, when i looked up and saw a guy standing at one of the empty chairs next to me.

We both reached out to shake hands as if we already knew each other. We smiled at each other and i said, “Hey brother, sit down and tell me what God is doing in your life?” He smiled and sat down.

So for the next hour we both conversed about our journey with God. We both shared about our previous marriages and what we have gained through the process. I shared my testimony of disobedience to the call of God on my life. We talked about the consequences of making wrong decisions. He also shared about the music ministry the Lord has given him.

Halfway through our visit he tells me that earlier in the day, he had been praying that the Lord would send someone to encourage him and someone that he could visit with. (He was up from southern Oregon with his wife for a few days).

We finished with prayer. The Lord had just encouraged us both.
What a God! A God that wants us to experience him through people.


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