Went into town on Friday and spotted the homeless guy I met last Friday. What a coincidence! We had a great chat. He told me he’d been to church since we last met. I reminded him of the places where he could get free/cheap food. He hadn’t visited the Homeless Healthcare Team, so I reminded him he should definitely go there as they could offer real help, plus a shower to get himself clean. I also blessed him in a practical way, which again he appreciated.
The next day I was at the local docks area where we had a team offering to pray for people – for healing or whatever their need was. One woman went for prayer, so I was directed to chat to her husband who was waiting a few yards away. He told me he was into “Mindfulness”, which is all the current rage here in the UK. Sadly, it leaves God out of the equation, as I indicated to him. He was obviously reviewing his life, as he admitted to me. I was able to share the gospel in some detail, plus share a lot of my personal testimony, including the time Jesus appeared in my bedroom. He was quite keen to hear what I had to say, and thanked me for sharing. As his wife came over to join him I gave him my card and encouraged him to check out my website New Christian UK After they left one of our team said that the wife had given her life to Christ during the 10 minute period she was there. Praise God!
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!
When sharing your faith, sooner or later some will say: “all religions are the same”. How do you respond?
One way to approach this scenario is to highlight the facts:
The founder of Buddhism is dead and still in his grave.
The founder of the Muslim faith is dead and still in his grave.
The founder of Confucianism is dead and still in his grave.
The founder of the Sikh faith is dead and still in his grave.
The founder of the Hindu faith is dead and still in his grave.
All followers of these religions will agree with the above facts.
However, according to the Bible and the experience of millions of Christians, Jesus Christ rose from the dead and is alive today.
Let’s assume you’re out on a hike. You come to a crossroads and you’re unsure which road to take. You notice there are two men by the side of the road. One is alive, the other is clearly dead. Which one would you ask for directions?
Jesus Christ is the living person at the crossroads who can tell you the right road to take.
In all other religions, man points and says: “This is the way to God!”. In the Bible Jesus Christ says:”I am the way to God!”
According to the Bible, Jesus claimed to be able to forgive sins, something only God can do.
Jesus also said: “I am the way, the truth and the life. No-one comes to the Father, except by me”
A very agitated guy came in with his pal for food today. I thought he might be withdrawing from drugs. In the course of a general chat he said to me ” I’m a friend”. I looked at him in a puzzled way and he clarified: “a Friend – a Quaker”. We chatted about this and he said he was “looking for the light”. I said “you mean God” and he replied “I don’t know if there is a God”. He went on to tell me he’d done around 7 years total in prison. He’d just come out on Christmas Eve from his last stint of 6 weeks. In the past he used to take cars, but now he does shoplifting mostly.
He then told me he was a Roman Catholic and had been confirmed in the last year. In prison he’d enjoyed reading the lesson in chapel. I asked if he went to confession. He said he didn’t, as he’d have to confess his sins. I told him that might do him good, but he wasn’t convinced. As he got up to leave I said: “would you like a New Testament?” He said, to my surprise, “I’d love a New Testament!” So off he went with his New Testament. I pray he reads it and gets convicted by the Holy Spirit of his need for forgiveness.
Nowadays you don’t need to subscribe to traditional Christian beliefs to be a Quaker. Things have changed.
The first guy who came in for food had beeen released from prison the day before. He had been in for “TWOCing” (Taking WithOut Consent). He proudly told me the different cars he’d taken, amd had even used the owners keys to do it.
The next one was a Romanian guy in his 20’s who spoke pretty good English. The third was an Indian woman who seemed pretty well off her head, making crazy comments about herself and talking weirdly to anyone who would listen, about her faith (Hindu), her father who bullied and verbally abused her, and all kinds of strange topics. In one of her throwaway lines she said she’d been in prison, but didn’t say why. At one point she said “all gods are the same”, to which I replied “no, they’re not!”, but she was so much in full flow I don’t think she even heard my retort. She mentioned she was bipolar, so perhaps she was missing out on her meds. She also said she’d been drinking too. We couldn’t give her food without a voucher. She waited while her friend, who had seen the “Footprints” poem on our wall, wrote out a copy of it. We told her where to go to get a voucher, but she never came back.
Another woman client was quite chatty and we talked a bit about God and faith. As she left I gave her a copy of Norman Warren’s booklet “Journey Into Life”.
I went out with our Healing Team this morning and had several encounters.
One lady sat down for prayer. She had recently had her application for ministry training in the church rejected. She was feeling rather confused and uncertain, but was adamant she wanted God’s will for her life. I told her she was on the home straight already; wanting God’s will for your life is the best mindset to be in! We prayed and she went away with, I think, some hope in her heart.
As elderly gentleman came along, carrying several bags of shopping. It turned out he was 91! He said he was suffering from glaucoma and cataracts. He was a Christian, so we talked about Jesus ministry of healing and how he never turned anyone away. We laid hands on him and asked how he felt. His reply was : “I feel strengthened!”
I noticed a woman taking one of our leaflets and soon afterwards coming back in my direction. I stopped her and we had a chat. She looked like, and turned out to be, an amazing woman. She had so many unusual experiences since childhood, it was clear she was one of a kind. She was a Christian, but admitted she’d been in some dark places over the years. After a long chat I asked her if she’d like prayer. She said she would, so myself and a lady team member knelt and ministered to her. We both were able to give her words from the Lord, many of which which she felt were right on the mark – and encouraging to her too.
A Jewish man I know, who has rather droppped out of normal society after life problems affected him badly, came by. I had given him one of my website cards that week. He pushed a piece of paper into my hand and walked off. I opened it and it was a scriptural response to the wording on my card. Unsurprisingly, he disagreed with the words of Jesus I had got printed on the card. He is a very intelligent guy and knows the Jewish scriptures inside out, so a bit of challenge in many ways!.