She was about 45 years of age and told me she was very stressed and anxious. She had constant nagging pain in her body and had taken 8 painkillers earlier that day. She said they were only one step down from morphine. She rarely went out because she became very anxious among people, especially those she didn’t know. Her eyes kept darting about in a way that seemed to confirm what she had told me.
While her case was being dealt with I offered her a booklet called “Finding Hope”. She briefly looked at it and thanked me for it. I also asked if she had a Bible. She did, but wasn’t familiar with it. I gave her a New Testament and showed her the pages at the front headed: “Where to find help when………..” She asked me to help her find the entry for “Worry” and we found the relevant Psalm verses. She said she thought that would be a help to her. A lady team member came over at this point and we prayed for her. Afterwards she said she felt calmer.
I met an “old” street friend – only 43 – who has long had addiction problems due to alcohol abuse. He’s been in and out of rehab many times. He came for food today and my heart really went out to him. He’s struggled and struggled to the extent that he’s been at rock bottom for some time. His body is totally wrecked. He told me today he’s died twice recently and been resuscitated. A lapsed cradle Catholic, he even went to Mass recently and confessed to the local priest. Unfortunately he still doesn’t have any peace. He acknowledged that Jesus is the only one who can help him. He says he is now down to 2 cans a day which, for him, is a massive reduction. I told him I believed God has a purpose for his life and he agreed with that.
He has a Bible and is reading it every day. I told him to cry out to Jesus with his whole being as he reads it. I offered to pray for him and he gladly accepted. After that I felt prompted to pray in tongues for him and poured myself out in the spirit with a great deal of passion and urgency that surprised even me. He thanked me and went off with his food parcel
Another couple of guys came in, one leaning on a stick. I thought: “I’ll check out the problem and offer to pray for his healing”.
By then he was in conversation with another team member, so I asked his accompanying friend what the leg problem was. He said “it’s been amputated”. I knew I didn’t have Smith Wigglesworth’s level of faith for a brand new leg, so I dropped the healing thought immediately!
Yesterday a woman I recognised came in for food. She used to be a street drinker with a big alcohol problem. I previously nicknamed her “Las Vegas” as that’s where she’s from.
In the last year she’s really lifted herself up from the depths and now attends college, doing a couple of A level courses, with a view to a degree eventually in some kind of animal husbandry. She was pretty tired and in pain so I offered to pray. She accepted, so I called over a lady on our team. We prayed for a couple of minutes, until her little girl came over and interrupted. “Las Vegas” said : “I was really peaceful when you guys prayed – thanks a lot.”
Today I was out in town with our Healing On The Streets team and had several conversations with passers-by. I met two Spiritualists: one was a woman who said she was a Spiritualist healer. I acknowledged that she had good motives in her heart, but gently explained to her that the Bible forbids spiritism and contact with the dead . Her reply was that men wrote the Bible, not God. I asked her “who is Jesus?” She wouldn’t accept that he was God made flesh, so that was as far as we got.
The next Spiritualist was a Reiki healer, Level 3, which he said was the highest you can get. I told him of a woman who came to see me who had received Reiki healing from some guy. After one Reiki session she started hearing voices that said they were her dead mother and father. Sadly, the voices eventually turned nasty, in a way unlike her real parents so she was troubled and confused. From what I read Reiki definitely has Eastern Buddhist occult origins and should be steered clear of, even so-called “Christian Reiki” which is a contradiction in terms.
Today he returned again for food, and while his bags were being prepared he beckoned me outside for a private chat. He reminded me of our conversation and my challenge to him to “test the spirits” next time he went to the Spiritualist Church. I had asked him to challenge them by asking (as the Apostle John says in scripture) “did Jesus Christ come in the flesh?” He told me he did ask them, so I was eagerly awaiting his next comment!
As I expected, and had warned him in advance, they did not give him a straight “yes” or “no” answer. He was fobbed off with a: “Christians can’t prove that Jesus was who he said he was.” I pointed out to my friend that this reply proved that the “Jesus” they talked of at his church was not the Jesus of the Bible.
My friend pointed out that every time he mentioned to Christians that he went to the Spiritualist church they looked and sounded alarmed. I explained “that was because you are being deceived and Christians are concerned for your eternal destiny.”
He had often gone to the Spiritualist church after having problems with his girlfriend and he acknowledged he got comfort from what they told him. They even said “we can see you up there on the platform doing this in years to come.”
He simply wasn’t hearing my warnings about the dangers. I then told hm the Bible warned against contact with the dead. This was new to him. He didn’t have a Bible, so I said I would write to him and give him the relevant verses from the Bible so he could read it for himself. I pray that the Lord will open his eyes!
A young guy aged 20 came in for food and in discussion told me he had a drink problem, having been hitting the bottle hard with horrible cheap stuff (“White Lightning”) for the last 5 years. He got alarmed when he started to get bleeding from his back passage, so has been to get help and is on tablets to curb the desire for alcohol. He was homeless and living in a tent until recently, but was now in acommodation. We chatted about faith and it became clear to me he wanted to turn his life around. I shared the gospel with him in some detail and he listened quite keenly.
He seemed to understand what I was saying as I illustrated the spiritual need for a change of direction. I shared a picture of how it’s like there are two buses, with different destinations. One is heading to Hell and Satan is the driver. Since the world is under Satan’s influence, we are in a sense all born on Satan’s bus. Satan is heading to Hell, since the Bible tells us that is the destination of Satan and all his fallen angels. Hell was not designed for people, but if we remain on Satan’s bus we end up at his destination. We therefore need to get off Satan’s bus and get on the one driven by Jesus – destination Heaven. I gave him a tract called “The Missing Peace” with my email address and website details as he was leaving.
Afterwards, an older guy came in looking for “the 3 ladies I shared some of my testimony with last week”. It was not our team, but I sat him down and listened to his story. He’d been in care for 10 years as a child, had a pretty rough life and ended up on the drink for many years. He finally got saved in a church in Brighton, England, and had drifted a bit recently. He clearly still had his faith, and occasionally attended church, but his spiritual life was pretty low according to how he described it. He also shared several temptations he had experienced. He had 3 bibles, so I encouraged him to read one every day and build himself up spiritually. I prayed with him before he left.
A guy I recognised came in for food. As he chatted about his life he told me he had been in 22 children’s homes from the age of 2 until he was 18. From a young age he had become increasingly violent and recalled smashing every single window in one house at the age of 5. He gradually became more and more violent and disturbed as the years went on, relying on and trusting no-one. Fortumately, he said, he’d never gone to prison
He told me he had been a priest in a local Satanic temple but was in the process of turning his back on Satanism and exploring Christianity. He was in the middle ground, so his old life was not causing him too much harm at present. I told him that things would get much worse when he had fully turned to Jesus and was serving him. He realised that, but reckoned it held no terrors for him. He had been there and done it all, so knew the way things worked. He had become disillusioned with Satanism and said it was like being on a treadmill – from first thing in the morning you’re on the go all the time. Some people might find it exciting, but it had worn him down. The way he described it, I could see there was no peace in it for him. I shared some of my testimony with him, and he could relate to some of the things I said. I also told him of my encounter with the reality of God’s love, and how Jesus had appeared to me on one occasion in my bedroom.
He had started attending a local church and they were giving him some practical jobs to do. He said one of these was restoring the original wooden cross that dated from when the church was built as a mission church over 100 years ago.
I told him about Doreen Irvine who had been “Queen of the Witches” in England at one time, but became a Christian. She had written a book “From Witchcraft To Christ” I offered to get him a copy and he said he would like to read it. He gave me his details and I said I would send a copy on to him. He had some questions about the Bible and we chatted about these for while. He is due to start an Alpha course in a couple of weeks time.