Live after Five – May 16, 2014
After handing out tracts for a while, I sat down for a few minutes to pray and rest. A man passing by made a comment about the loud music and I saw this as an excellent opportunity to tell him that I wasn’t there for the music, but to tell people about Jesus. At first his face twisted in anger and he began to walk off. But I called out after him and asked him to tell me why that made him so angry. And surprisingly, he did. He had been in church for 30 years. When his marriage ended, he felt judged and rejected by the church. So 10 years ago he walked away….from church, from salvation, from Jesus. There was a hardness to his face as he said “I know what the book says and I’m not gonna do it and I’m not gonna be a hypocrite about it.” Throughout our conversation he was polite but there seemed to be a boiling anger just beneath the surface. I asked him if he understood what his decision to walk away from Jesus meant in terms of eternal consequences. He said he knew he was going to hell but he wasn’t worried about that right now. But I know there will be a day when it will matter to him more than anything. He wouldn’t give me his name but God knows who he is. Please pray that he would come to repentance and faith in Christ and that his heart would be healed from the wounds of the past.
Third Street Outreach – May 16, 2014
Last night on Third Street I talked to a man named Lee. He introduced himself as a Christian wanna-be. He said that he wanted to be a Christian but just could not do what Jesus required. I asked what things he was talking about and he responded that he couldn’t sell everything he had and give it away to follow Jesus. Somehow in his mind, he was convinced that the only way to be a Christian was to own nothing. I shared verse after verse from the Bible with him , but he refused to accept what was plainly stated in the word of God. When I finished talking to Lee I leaned up against a building and took a few minutes to pray for him. Looking up at the patches of beautiful night sky that I could see between the downtown buildings, my heart filled with great joy as I thanked The Lord for grace. Wonderful grace! What peace it brings to know that it is all of grace. Please pray that Lee would realize that his own works will never be enough and that only the work of Jesus on the cross is sufficient to save.
Bus Station – May 17, 2014
Today at the bus station I met Justin. He has traveled all over the country working as a contractor, but when he got to Baton Rouge last week he found out that he couldn’t work without a TWIC card. Now he finds himself without a place to stay and was forced to pawn the few belongings he brought with him in order to pay for a bed in the local homeless shelter. He has been brought for a moment to a place in life he never thought he would be and it has humbled him. Earlier in his life he had made a profession of faith in Christ but admitted that he had strayed away from that. As we talked he seemed to understand that there was nothing random in the seeming randomness of somebody coming up to him to talk about Jesus at this particular point in his life. Please pray that Justin would respond to God’s call to come to a place of full commitment of his life to Christ.
As I was driving home from the bus station, I passed an Islamic mosque and a Buddhist temple. And it was yet another reminder, on this beautiful sunshiny day, of how much darkness, confusion and deception there is in our city. They will live and die in that darkness unless we bring them the light of the gospel. It is their only hope.