Archive for the ‘Street Ministry’ Category

“Slice and Dice”

May 26, 2019

Yesterday we believed God to go out and share God’s word. However, this time it was to only read His word out loud so that all those He brings by would hear. That is of course, to only those that He opens their ears to hear. That morning, the wife and i had talked about the word being “powerful, sharper than a two-edged sword, cutting through the joints and marrow”. I had told her that a current day application would be “slice and dice” :-).

Later we headed out the door to the place we believed the Lord to go. When we arrived, after prayer, we shared several  Holy scriptures (when was the last time you heard that?) on one of our regular corners for about an hour. Afterwards, we believed to go across the street to share. After about thirty minutes, i had noticed out of the corner of my eye, a guy standing to my right about 10 feet away listening to the Word. When i looked over at him while still reading the scriptures, my spirit bore witness that i had seen this guy pass by me as i was reading on the other side of the street, maybe a couple of times, not sure.

After another ten, twenty minutes, i stopped and looked at him and said, “hey, how’s it going?”. Then he immediately went into spilling out tons of “unbelief”. It has been a while since God has brought to us a guy by like him in such condition. I remember many of times in the past where they would come up and spill out their unbelief in many different forms. Here was a young guy, 23-26, who said when i asked him when he had believed in the Lord Jesus, said that he believed when he was 7 years old. He also said that he believed until he was 23.

After we continued to listen, we had to finally interrupt him from his continuing unbelief. We asked him, “What happened?”. He said that he was over in Iraq. I said, “Ah, so that is what happened”. No, he said. Then he said that he still believed, still prayed, and still read his bible. Then, he went into saying how his superiors, government officials, etc. had showed him that the bible was not true historically, and that there is many other manuscripts, etc. that prove this or that. He was packed with information. Some of it may have been true, but at the core of his being there was unbelief.

We went back and forth for just a little bit. From experience, i have learned that the worst thing one can do in a public environment is to get into an argument over anything pertaining to God, the bible, etc. Unbelievers passing by have no clue what’s going on. All they hear is “God”, “Jesus”, “Bible”, etc, and immediately think within themselves, “Oh no, here we go again. More arguing about religion”. “Glad I am not apart of that”.

We finished shortly thereafter. Unbelief had manifested itself. The word had did its “slice and dice”. It’s hard stuff for sure. No one likes to have the Word of God prick their heart to the core, for sure.

This had gripped my heart to hear testimony once again about someone who had walked with God at one time, but now had taken up with unbelief. There is always a story from each one as to what had happened to bring about their unbelief. In some cases, it is a “divorce”, or maybe a “death”. Maybe it was when they left home and went off to college. Yet, in every case, their faith was shaken, tried, and tested. It would take deeps roots to be able to stand. This is why we have such needful words of warning in the book of Hebrews. These words are written to “believers”, not to those who have yet to believe.

“Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but encourage one another daily, while it is called “Today”, lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partakers of Christ if  we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end, while it is said: “Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” (Heb.3:12-15)

Yes, i know, it’s hard to swallow the fact that we as believers, can allow an “evil heart of unbelief” to come upon us. This is just what happened to this guy. And we must never think that it could not come to us. This is why the writer of this book said that we as believers need to “hold fast our confidence”, “hold fast our hope”, “hold fast our profession” to the end. (Read Hebrews chapter 3 and 4).

We will continue to pray for this man, that his heart may be turned from the sin of unbelief, and back to God. Amen.

Awesome week!

May 20, 2019

Experiencing God while you’re living. There is nothing quite like it. And, if you have been born of the Spirit, i.e. the Spirit of the living God is inside you, you have a testimony of what God is doing currently in your life. So….. share it! Give God some credit, some glory!

The most awesome thing that took place this week (Tuesday) was the salvation of “Jose”. God chose to save him. We saw him down the sidewalk waiting for the bus. The Spirit said to go over to him, so we did. We handed him a “Born of the Spirit” card, like we usually do, and God took it from there. Before long he was praying to the Father, asking for forgiveness and confessing upon the Lord Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. We (the Holy Spirit and i) prayed with him just after he prayed. It was a beautiful experience to see how God moved at just the right time. What a God! A God who saves!

Later that same day, we met a fellow believer on the bus. Awesome time of fellowship. We sensed that he had a personal struggle going on in which he didn’t disclose. God, being all knowing, knew just exactly what it was. We continue to pray for him.

On Wednesday, we believed God to head out on the train towards Santa Monica. We we got off the bus and got to the train platform, He had a guy waiting there. We approached him and handed him a card. He read it as we stood off at a distance. Afterward, i asked him what he thought of it. He said that he hadn’t heard of the message of being born again like this before. It was straight from John chapter 3. So, it asked the question, “what has he heard regarding the gospel?”. We encouraged him to seek God and be born of the Spirit. And as we have said on many occasions, “It’s like walking into a dark room and flipping the light switch on. Boom! Now i can see!”

On Thursday, we believed God to head up north on the bus. He had a guy sitting in his car right next to where we were waiting for the bus. Come to find out, he was a believer, who was on his lunch from work. We had a good time “fellowship” (two fellows in the same ship :-). We believed for him to be encouraged to step out in faith and share Jesus more often. Yes! Glory to God!                                                                                                            Later that day, we met a young guy on the train who was encouraged by what the Holy Spirit spoke to Him. He believed, but needed a spiritual boost that he was certainly not going to receive from the world. He couldn’t wait to share it with his girlfriend who he was headed to see. It is always a blessing to know that there is no “happen chances” with God.

On Friday, we believed God to go to downtown and preach the gospel. The Spirit gave us liberty and many heard what they would probably of not heard that day. And what was that? That they are separated from God because of sin. But, that God did indeed made a way for them through the cross of Christ.                                                                                After finishing, we were drained physically. We took a break and texted my wife to pray. Soon, we arrived at another corner, and was led to share there. It wasn’t but a few minutes into sharing the gospel, i noticed a guy off in the distance listening. He changed positions every so often. For the rest of the time, probably like an hour, he was there. When we finished, he came over and shook our hand. He was a believer, bless the Lord! He was encouraged at hearing the gospel. He had been praying the whole time. Many times over the years, i have seen this. God sends people to stand off in the distance and pray. That’s the God we serve! Always He has our best interest! He alone knows what is needed so His gospel, mixed with His Spirit, can do what He declares it to do…. speak to people, draw them to Himself.

Hallelujah! It’s good to be back at it on a more regular basis. He is good!

 

 

We are back!

May 19, 2019

I’m blessed to be able to revisit my blog and hopefully do some sharing of what God is doing currently out on the streets. Finally, after 11 1/2 years of getting out on the streets part-time, sharing the gospel, I’m blessed to say that we are finally back to full-time status. God is good and worthy to be praised! He makes a way even it it takes years :-).

As i sit here today, I’m not quite sure where this blog will go. I know that time is of the essence and extremely valuable. My heart is for sharing what God is doing out on the streets, in hopes that readers will be encouraged to get out of their four walls and use their gifts and calling for God and His kingdom.

When it’s all said and done, i want God to be glorified in my posts. May you be encouraged to experience God as your living day by day, not just once on Sunday, or Saturday. He is the God of the here and now. Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow may never come. Only what’s done for Him, his glory, and his kingdom, will matter.

God bless you!

The prodigal daughter

November 22, 2016

Blessed yesterday to be back in downtown. We even got to do some preaching :).
Towards the end of the day, God brought “Brandi” by. My guess is that she was around 30 years old. She is your typical homeless girl bound by heroin. She was raised in Alabama in a southern Baptist home. She has two kids who are being raised by her parents in two separate homes.

We listened to her story. And as we did, the Holy Spirit gave us some insight into where she was currently at spiritually. We shared and encouraged her that God is not very far away. In fact, he is just camped out next door. He is just waiting for her to turn to Him. She listened.

We reminded her of the “Prodigal son” story, of which she had heard many times before. However, we put her into the story as the “Prodigal daughter”. The Father is there waiting with open arms to through a party upon her return, but she just has to get to the point where she “has spent all”, and “comes to herself”.

We also reminded her that she is indeed responsible for that which she knows. And of course being raised “Southern Baptist”, she knows about Jesus and the salvation that He alone brings. It was good for her to be reminded of this, because in her sharing, she has allowed some demonic influence to change her thinking, which is so very common out on the streets.

We asked her if we could pray for her. She smiled and said, “well, as long as I don’t have to stand here and close my eyes” . So we did.

She shared how she misses her kids. Heroin is no doubt nullifying the pain.

She seemed to have hope as we parted. Please pray for her. She could have been any one of our daughters. Thank you.

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.

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.

Chasing dreams, or?

May 6, 2014

Just like God….
Yesterday morning, i was given this thought….
“We can spend our whole lives chasing our dreams, or we can get filled with God and begin to find out what we were created to “Be” and to “Do” while we are living here for a few days on this planet.”

Then i get on the bus….
I see a guy coming down the aisle to the back. He appears to be uncertain or lost. Then he does a little spin around before he sits down.
I say to him, “hey! How’s it going?”
His reply? “Good! Just having a “Dreamy life”. Bing!

Then i shared with him what i had received, “We can spend our whole lives chasing our dreams….”
So we spent the next 25 mins. in conversation about dreams, God/Jesus, the need for a spiritual birth etc. He also mentioned how he used to have a “Gideon bible” and enjoyed reading it. Bing!
I had one in my back pocket, which i graciously gave him.

As i have said many times, “God is all about people”. He will daily lead you to people, or bring them right to you. And if, we are not off in our own little world, and have the blinders removed, we will see the realm (kingdom) of God come here on earth.

A Cannabis bus ride

November 22, 2013

Sittin in the back corner and here comes a guy with a “Cannabis” hat on and sits right next to me in the center seat. I asked him if he knew a guy that i know that gathers signatures for legalizing it. He said that he has seen him at the square.
That led into him sharing for the next 20 minutes about his Cannabis life. I listened to him talk about the upcoming legalization of it and how its going to be marketed etc.

I soon told him about my “pot smoking days” in my earlier years. We had common ground and this guy was really into it. He even pulled out of his backpack, a very detailed binder with all kinds of technical info., pics etc. He was a third generation expert in the care of, the study of, and the actual growing and selling also. Soon he even broke out his jar and showed me some of his finest.

I saw my stop coming up the road and was telling the Holy Spirit how i really needed his help in causing this guy to stop for a second so we could leave him with something.
He did.
I thanked him for sharing and gave my testimony of how i used to be all into that, but after about six years, i was born again and soon that desire was taken away and replaced with the power of the Holy Spirit. I told him that i can honestly say that experiencing God as you are living in the Spirit is no where even on the same planet as being temporarily high.

He had this look on his face as i smiled and shook his hand and handed him a “Born of the Spirit” card and said, “God bless you!”. And off the bus we went.

God the ORCHESTRATOR

September 3, 2012

Another orchestration of God for his glory.
Last week, I’m heading down on the bus to Milwaukie. This time, I figured that I would sit in the middle seat at the back. Something that I used to do all the time. As the bus made its stops and people got on, I noticed that no one was coming to the back seats to sit. I thought it was strange. Did I look that ugly or what?
Finally after a few more stops, I jumped over to the corner seat. The next stop, one guy gets on. Guess where he sits? You got it. Right in the middle seat.

I immediately thought that there must be something to this. So I strike up a conversation with him. Come to find out, he just got out of the “drunk tank” in Portland after spending the night there. It wasn’t long before he begin to be sorry as our conversation turned to God. He knew that it was no happen chance that we had met. He once walked with God, but had strayed in recent years.
God had allowed him to spend the night in a cold cell with a chrome toilet, to get up the next morning and get on a bus and meet someone who would remind him about Himself. What a God! The ORCHESTRATOR!

People in a needy area

June 14, 2012

This morning the Spirit showed me that He wanted me to visit a part of town that I haven’t been to in over six month’s. When I first heard this, I really didn’t want to go. I was just not enthused about going there this time. However, I have learned that it’s not about whither I want to go or not, it’s about what He wants to do.

After getting off the max train, I started to walk in a different area to get to this part of town. This time, I came from another direction. It was from the west. All the other times that I can remember were from the north, either walking or by bus.

After about a block or two, I looked to my left and noticed a man standing outside of a place of business and looking at his phone. Quickly the Spirit had me focus on his shirt that he was wearing. It said, “I’m in a boat”. Then I heard the Spirit say, “the boat, ah, you know what to do with that”. I smiled and said, “oh yes”.

A brother and I, will sometimes use “boat” in reference to sharing Christ and telling them that they need to “get in the boat” with Jesus.

So I walked over to the guy and said, “hey, I like your shirt!” He smiled and said, “thanks”. I then proceeded to share with him how that many times I will share Jesus with people and use the “boat” as saying, “are you in the boat yet?”. I then asked him if he was familiar with the story of Noah and the Ark. He said that he was. I then said that it’s the same today, God is trying to get people in the boat before it takes off. He listened and was receptive to what he heard. Another reminder, another seed.

After that encounter, I went by the “Polish Association” building. As I was passing by, I noticed a billboard and a map of Poland. As I stood there looking at it, my mind went back years ago when the Wall was still up and we went into Poland, taking with us something that the brothers and sisters counted as priceless. I will never forget. Blessed again with the reminder.

As I approached the area, I was once again reminded that one of Satan’s main tools is “preoccupation”. Whatever and whoever he can use to distract from them receiving from their maker, he will do. He is doing a very good job of it. In fact, I would say that he is getting better all the time at the art of preoccupation.

Soon we were onto the main street of this area. I am well familiar with this area, having been here many times. We went into a prayer walk immediately as we walked down the sidewalk. A ways down the road, we were hit with the word “Perversion”. It came strong and continually as we spent the next couple hours in walking and sitting in prayer.

I can honestly say that since the last time I was here, the increase in “iniquity” which is perversion, has dramatically increased in as little as six months. Yep, only six months.

Continuing in prayer, I kept hearing “twisted”. I know that is a popular “cool” word, but this had some depth to it. When I got home this evening, I went into study again on “Iniquity”, “Perversion” and the like. I will not take all the time here, but a few things might be a good reminder.

Iniquity in the Hebrew means, “perversity ie (moral) evil, fault. Along with some other meanings, it also means “to distort”. After much study, I came to the Webster definition of Distort. It means, “to twist, to twist out of the true meaning or proportion, to twist out of a natural, normal or original shape or condition, pervert.”

So when the Spirit gave me the words “perversion” and “twisted”, He wasn’t far off.

So now we are in prayer ever more so for the people of this area. And, asking when we are to go back and what we are to do. They need Jesus, like really bad. It’s one of the “core” areas of this city.