Sovereignty and Street Evangelism

22 02 2016

Some days are dull and seemingly ineffective in the work of street evangelism. This is a perception but not a truth. The truth is that no ministry ever, anywhere is ineffective. Sometimes you plant, sometimes you water, sometimes you see increase, and other times you are just plowing the soil but all of it is Gospel work. Two passages have demonstrated to me the truth of God’s sovereignty in the work of evangelism.

“So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.” (Isaiah 55:11)

I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.” (1 Corinthians 3:6-9)

The reason we feel evangelism is unproductive during those times when increase isn’t being given is because we can’t see the invisible work that God is doing in people. We can only see the results and I think we look too much for those and fail to realize that God is doing a work according to His own good pleasure unseen to our eyes. There are however times where the invisible work of God is made visible to our eyes.

These are times not only of encouragement to us personally but times that encourage our faith and help us trust a little bit more. Such a thing happened the week before we left for Super Bowl Outreach. Our attempts at sharing the Gospel seemed frustrating that week to say the least.

We were supposed to go out Thursday night but it seemed not to come together for any of us so we agreed to go Friday night. On Friday I was having a bad day and didn’t feel at all like going out but we did anyway. A good crowd formed while my friend Gerry was preaching and I noticed a lady (who I later found out was named Marci) walked up from inside the bus terminal and began watching seriously.

I noticed she began to cry and then I noticed she walked over to my wife Amy who was nearby passing out tracts. They spoke for probably a good 30 minutes. Gerry finished and I began preaching and they were still talking. About 15 minutes into my sermon Marci walked back over and began listening again, crying off and on.

After the preaching was done she walked up and introduced herself. She was a professing believer but admitted she had not been living her claim. She was in a troubled marriage with an unbeliever and was going through a difficult time. We answered several questions for her before praying for her but it was what she said after the prayer that really convicted my heart about how I view ministry.

She told u how glad she was that we were here on this particular night because of problems at home which drove her out of the house and to the bus station. I recalled how we were supposed to be out the night before but plans had fallen apart. She told us as well that she usually went to the other bus station on the Southwest side of town not the Downtown station. She wasn’t sure why she had gotten off when she did until he heard our preaching.

To me it was lesson learned. When things don’t come together as planned it may not be Satan working against you but God working for someone else in particular. In this case  us coming a day later and her getting off at the wrong station turned out to be the Lord’s doing and it truly was marvelous in our eyes.

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