A simply stunning day. I will try to be brief!
We met an amazing group of born again Ethiopians, who were warm to our approach and keen to get together again - imagine an Ethiopian stream of CPM in New Zealand, certainly has a book of Acts ring to it!
John from Fiji spent a couple of hours with an amazing Fijian lady - "Nana", who is effectively opening her home as a community centre for street/gang kids, with God resourcing her. In an area with a high rate of burglaries, her home has remained untouched. She is a radiant Christian.
This afternoon we found the closest we have come to an English style council estate. Terraced houses, rubbish, every house with similar doors, dubious characters hanging around. But what a place where God has been busy preparing hearts. We chatted with two young guys in their early 20s - one a Christian, but struggling with alcohol, and the other not yet a Christian, but listened intently as we shared our stories, and grappled intelligently with the Gospel message as he read the Bible. He kept the Bible, promised to read it, and we will visit again on Thursday. Then we met a young lady who, like so many, has had contact with the Mormons and JWs. Again she responded really positively, and quietly read over the prayer of commitment. Did she actually pray it? Well we'll find out on Thursday! Then we met a Maori granddad, had been a hard-drinking drug abuser, but has straightened his life out, and is spiritually open, He wasn't ready to dive into the Bible, but promised to read "the Case for Easter" book we will take him. Add in the lovely Maori lady who is obviously the street matriarch, who was responsive and open and who welcomed our offer to visit again, and it was a great afternoon.
Our other team was following up in an area we previously visited. A twenty year old Niuean guy became a Christian for the first time, with great joy and urgency. He was almost literally waiting for us! You will hopefully recall Michael who recommitted his life to Jesus yesterday - we only met him by "accident" as we were hoping to meet his Mum. Well today we met her, and she was ecstatic, having been praying for her son for a long time. He had immediately told her what had happened, and she commented that he was a changed young man! Should we expect anything less? She also said he'd been busy texting his friends inviting them along when we meet next Monday. We were almost angels in disguise, arriving in direct and specific answer to prayer.
As we gathered to debrief, I think it is fair to say that there was a deep sense of awe and wonder among us. We have started to all speak out prayers together, because time is short and the needs are urgent - and today the praise concert was loud and heartfelt.
Reading through this, it all sounds too easy, but it is nevertheless my genuine account of what I understood to have happened today.
Michael or Jo?
1 week ago