1 Corinthians 13:4-5 (New Living Translation)

“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud  or rude…”

Driving by the Bijou Theater marquee sign, it advertised for a comedy show performance by Margaret Cho on Saturday night. Knowing risks I was taking,  I prayed.  I am aware of her bisexuality and political leanings.  Yet, Jesus loves her and died for her just as he loves and died for me!

I was not going to pass out tracts if any of the Westboro Baptist Church idiots were going to be out in full adornment. They were not there to protest, holler, and yell. Thank you, Jesus! Their absence was an answered prayer.

The Lord pressed on my mind to quietly and lovingly pass out gospel tracts, ” on the sidewalk corner across from the theater.  Knowing her audience would consist of GBLT persons, if I get into a conversation with anyone attending the show, I would NOT discuss gay issues.  The Lord wanted me to give out gospel tracts asking people to put their faith in Jesus.   Spurgeon was quoted as saying you will catch more flies with honey rather than vinegar.

There was opportunity to have some small talk with a gay couple.  The kindly accepted the  gospel tract and told them “God bless.”  Reading the Bible, Jesus was very polite and loving  with the unsaved.  So I just modeled what he did, LOVE ON PEOPLE!

While I never got to personally meet Ms. Cho, I still prayed for those accepting the tracts and Ms. Cho to repent and put their faith in Jesus.

Here is the link for the gospel tract distributed last night:

http://www.fellowshiptractleague.org/tract_html/english/126_1.html

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Save Some

November 14, 2010

1 Corinthians 9:22 (English Standard Version)

22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some.

(The Unsaved) “Woe is me, my heart sinks as I see their doom, and hear the terrible cries of their too-late awaking. Save some, O Christians! By all means, save some. By yonder flames, and outer darkness, and the weeping, and the wailing, and the nashing of teeth, see to save some! Let this, as in the case of the apostle(Paul), be your great and your ruling object in life, that by all means you may save some.”-C.H. Spurgeon “The Soul Winner”

While Saturday morning and night over 1000 tracts and handful of Gospel of John were distributed, many will throw away or tear up the message of “Jesus Christ and him crucified” for their eternal souls. Yet, some will either keep the gospel message or recall later what they tossed on the ground. I take part in the Great Commission in seeing people saved. Yet it is truly Jesus will be someone’s Savior. The Lord allows me to take part in the fishing expedition of souls bound for the wrath of God and the Lake of Fire to partake in the decision of a unsaved person accepting or rejecting the offer given to all men to call upon the name of Jesus.

On Saturday evening, I believe the Lord allowed me to encounter one of the “some“. The young man was leaving the Copper Cellar and I had in my hand a gospel tract. The tract had a Christmas theme written by Billy Graham and contained the Calvary Chapel business card. The young man asked what it was and I told him it is a gospel tract. I encouraged him to read it to see what it contained. I smiled and left him to read it. As I was walking away he propped himself against the retaining wall to read the tract. After watching for a minute, I could see the Holy Spirit working in the young man as he took the time to read the contents.  I prayed for him as I journeyed on to hand out more gospel literature to college students and those eating and drinking in the local venues.

Some times to get the one lost sheep, you have to go push through the 99 sheep. The evil spiritual forces will use the other lost to prevent you to getting to the one that is on the verge of turning from being a black sheep to a white sheep. It is only by the power of God, I was able to reach the one lost young man to present him with the eternal change from darkness to light.

Greg Laurie radio shows

October 29, 2010

I have been listening to Greg Laurie radio shows the past several days. He is a Calvary Chapel Evangelist. He has been really focusing on Evangelism in the area of biblical love.

Many perceive Evangelists as harsh and unloving. Looking back in the Gospels we see how Jesus was truthful with those he interacted, yet he was very loving in how he presented the people’s issues or lifestyles.  It has been said by one evangelist in the past was when we preach “hell”, we should do it with tears and a cry in our voice.

We must be honest in telling people who if they do not repent and put their faith in Jesus, they will face the wrath of God and be cast into the lake of fire. However, in presenting it to the masses, do it in the way that you do not want to see the masses going to Hell.  Woo them away from the impending danger. Warn people(Danger! Danger! Will Robinson!)

Just as you would warn somebody driving down the road and wave them down at the side of the road. Telling them that the bridge is out at the end of the road and if they continued down that direction, they would crash and burn.

One of the ways I have seen the Lord get the attention of the people I encounter is allowing the Holy Spirit to lead the conversation, not my flesh. When we get in the flesh is when the message can get muddled. (God can still use the situation if we mess up.) Yet, when we follow Zechariah 4:6 “Not by might, nor by power, but by MY SPIRIT SAYS THE LORD OF HOSTS” God will be faithful to honor those submitting to his loving and guiding hands.

I pray before going out to do the work of an Evangelist. I prayed especially for a free parking space down on Cumberland. Tomorrow is the UT vs. Florida football game. It was crazy already downtown and the game has not started. I walked up and down Cumberland Ave. and passed out tracts. Read the 3rd chapter of John on a street corner next to Old College Inn.  Then I went back to the spot in front of the Taco Bell facing the bars and a liquor store.  For about 3o minutes I read the Bible.

After thirty minutes, a  gentleman walks up beside me with a couple of tracts and starts passing out tracts as I read the word. When he ran out of tracts he asked if he could help me pass out some of my tract stash. I gladly let him. I introduced myself to him. He and I both share the same name. He is a drifter and just got into Knoxville after a long bike ride from Tazwell. He did receive an earlier ride from South Kentucky to Tazwell by a minister.  When talking to Rob, I received assurance from the Lord, Rob was a believer and a God-sent help to me. We probably passed out about 50 tracts, a Gospel of John, and a pocket New Testament, “The Invitation”.  I gave him one of my tracts with the website to get ahold of me next time he is on the Internet. He told me of a legal matter he had to take care of in the area. I prayed with him about the legal matter and for his safety wherever the Lord guides him and to have that continue boldness of the Holy Spirit in sharing  Jesus. I did not have any money to give him for food or hotel, but I pray that the Lord will me his needs. Thank you Jesus for sending, Rob.

While we were handing out tracts, a group of gang bangers started yelling at us and going by us, “Satan is Lord, Satan is God, etc”  Rob and I shook our heads knowing spiritual attack comes when light shines in the darkness.  Towards the end as I started to read scripture for the last time the noise level on a live band went super loud. Yet the Lord gave me scripture to read and no music was going to drown out the reading of the Bible. At other times when not reading the Bible, I started reading the tracts. If the college crowd was not going to read them, then I will read it to them.

At times when I had one of the million dollar bills in mine hands, I held them up. I figured if the UT scalpers where going to hold their products(tickets) in the air to sell, I was going to hold up my tracts and if someone asked me how much I was charging for a ticket, I would say this ticket is free and hand them a gospel tract.

I left rejoicing for the seeds planted and for the Lord sending Rob to help distribute tracts.

I did go out tonight on Cumberland Strip to pass out tracts and read the bible outloud. Yet, I wanted to repost one of my encounters from the past on and encounter I had with a college man trying to lay the mack on some freshman girls.

Saturday was the big move for the new and returning college students. On Saturday night, they were on the UT strip(Cumberland St.) like locusts. A couple of interesting meets with some students. One was a returning college student "laying the mack" on some new college freshman girls. I was once a college student and I knew what this college guy was attempting to do with any lady he could seduce. If you parents are not praying for your college stu … Read More

via Savor the Savior

Let me give you a visual in your mind of what Cumberland strip is mapped.  The Cumberland strip is one of the main roads in Knoxville. The University of Tennessee is on the Cumberland strip as well as a host of eating establishments and alcoholic bars. There are public sidewalks on both sides of the road and in front of these businesses.

As many Evangelists, trade unions, various protesters are aware, you are able to use the sidewalk to exercise your 1st amendment rights. As long as you do not completely block traffic or force someone to take your handbills.

One of the bars on the Cumberland strip is “Bar Knoxville”  This bar harasses Evangelists on a frequent basis. The bouncers will come out on the sidewalk(legally protected area for free speech) and intimate evangelists by telling them to not hand out religious material. Some are unaware or are aware of the free speech laws and still intimidate Evangelists.

I was  subject to the threats of a bouncer from Bar Knoxville. I verbally stated to him and hearers around him that the sidewalk is public property and I am exercising my first amendment rights to hand out materials to anyone willing to take a Christian material. He kept saying I needed to move on down and that the sidewalk was in front of their bar and they did not want me on the sidewalk. According to past Supreme Court decisions, the bouncer has no authority to tell me how to operate my 1st amendment rights as long as I am not on their property. Even though the public sidewalk runs by their business, his jurisdiction ends once he steps off the bar property and steps out on public property.  The confrontation with the bouncer if taken to a court of law would have ruled the Bouncer was interfering in blocking my access on the sidewalk. Bar Knoxville routinely blocks the sidewalk during the course of the night by setting up stands for those wanting to enter the bar. However they cannot interfere with other traffic not associated with their business.

Many may say I should not be doing this and disrupting their business. May I remind those persons of past history. During the Civil Rights Era in the South, many protested businesses that prevent blacks from access to use their facilities based on their color. In our times today, trade unions set up banners and union members to protest unfair labor practices in front of construction sites, grocery stores, hospitals, etc.(In Knoxville, TN you will see sporadically throughout the city signs which read, “Shame On…(name the business or individual)”   or “Labor dispute”.   They too are constitutionally protected to voice grievances.

While an Evangelists’ concerns are getting the Gospel to the sinner, they will agree with what the Bible states about the dangers of Alcohol, strip joints, Adult video stores, etc.

So I continued to hand out the materials during the rest of the night.  Across the street was another bar. The doorkeeper to the bar was very friendly to me and we had a nice conversation. He knows what I do, yet in love I have spoken to him on several occasions. (Pray for this doorkeeper ab the Half Barrel).  Not all bouncer/doorkeepers at bars are mean.  So the Gospel can be shared with those working at the bars.

As far as Bar Knoxville, I have spoken with other evangelists encountering the same problem with this particular bar. On a side note, this bar from time to time allow young underage minor to come in prior to serving alcohol at 11pm. This is sad how Bar Knoxville is conditioning YOUR children to become acclimated to a bar prior to becoming a 21. They need future customers once the college students graduate and rotate out.  These bars are gateways to get kids away from church(they get drunk on Saturday, they wont be sober enough to get out of bed for church) and into the pagan lifestyles leading to their destruction of their health and potentially keeping them out of the Kingdom of God if they continue in practices that the world offers.

For Evangelists: I pray you remain strong in the Lord despite the threats of bar bouncers. I would also recommend to new evangelists to look up your local laws concerning your ability to evangelize and become familiar with Supreme Court cases. Especially when a bouncer or anyone opposing you may state you cannot evangelize in a certain manner. Many of the opposition are unfamiliar with free speech rights. Many are familiar with free speech right and may still lie to you on what you cannot do in public because they oppose God’s Word.  Always go in the power of the Holy Spirit and never in your own strength.

2 Timothy 4:5 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

5 But as for you, keep a clear head about everything, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

It was the final concert of the 2010 year for Sundown.  I met up with Tim Weakley and a group of other believers in Krutch Park to pass out tracts, visit with the young crowd, and open air preach. When I open air preach, I majority of the time just read straight from the Bible with little exposition of the text.(when explanation of a word or meaning is needed or to put in today’s language or relate-able events.)  It was totally the Lord for me to share the Word without preparation.  The Holy Spirit gave me the words to speak to the listeners and passer-bys.

Most of the tracts I handed out were from Carl K. out of TX.(He gives me tracts in a business card style format. Easy to carry, durable, and the gospel message on the back of the card.)

Towards the end we had a unique encounter with a unsaved college man. Tim talked to him while  another lady in our group and I continued to open-air. The Holy Spirit was working with Tim, then the enemy attempted to interrupt Tim with a Hyper-Charismatic young man. The man was only doing what he had been brought up in the Pentecostal church he attends. He pushed Tim out of the way to talk to the unsaved kid. The over Hyper pentecostal jargon and Word of Faith jabberings this man gave to the kid was not biblical.

Then the Lord brought to my mind Pastor Mark’s sermon from last week on Speaking in Tongues.   He said we don’t speak in tongues in a normal morning service or do things that would frighten, scare, or turn off an unbeliever or frustrate a non-Charismatic believer in the Lord. God is not the author of confusion and fear.  God had allowed me to see what Mark was preaching about in action.

All we could do was pray for the unsaved kid and his friends plus for the Hyper Pentecostal kid to shut up and move on. The kid would not let up till he conviced this kid he needed to have faith to start speaking in tongues.  Luckily the Sundown concert was over and the Lord used a cop to shout out in the park, “Show is over, everyone needs to leave” Well it was an answered prayer to get this hyper-pentecostal kid to stop interrupting what the Holy Spirit was already doing. Yet, we believe God’s Word does not comeback void and hopefully we shall have another opportunity to see the unsaved kid again and share Jesus with him without the interruption of Hyper-Pentecostals.

The Hyper-Pentecostal man was trying to act out the flesh the workings of the Holy Spirit. This goes against what Scripture teaches in Zech. 4:6 “NOT by might, nor by strength, but BY MY SPIRIT says the LORD OF HOSTS!”

Now just trust the Lord in the seeds to take root in those lives the Lord allowed us to encounter!

We were in the park next to the concert when I was given the opportunity to open air preach.(Like John Wesley, I grew up in the Methodist church.) During the time I was speaking, I did have a piece of food thrown at me….someone must have thought I was hungry while preaching…hee hee.

Many of those in the park down from the concert were Jr. high/high school and college students.  Sometimes they were nice other times they were belligerent. There was one older man who stood in front of Tim and very loudly started cussing. Tim asked him nicely to not cuss especially with little children and ladies present. He just started cussing more. A law enforcement  personnel came up to the man and told him to stop cussing and move on.

During the course of the evening I ran low on tracts and went out to my car to get more tracts. When I returned to Market Square(a public area with public sidewalks) The rent-a-security personnel she would not let me take my messenger bag in and pass out tracts.  Now I knew according to the 1st amendment and Supreme Court cases I was within my rights and not in any violation of the law of passing out tracts.  However, I could have gone to a police officer and registered a complaint. The only restriction on Market Square that night is alcohol could not leave Market Square.  Yet, I did not go find an officer.  I just went and found Tim.(another open air evangelist)  He told me if I wanted I could leave my bag with him and just stuff tracts in my pockets. Yet, Tim did not have the normal amount of guys with him in the park to evangelize. I decided to stay with him and help him out.(That gave me the opportunity to do the open air…see former post.)

Common sense and being respectful  to people, I know not to get in front of the concert stage and be obnoxious.  If you want to effectively communicate your message with the public, you look for avenues that would not disruptive the music performers. The park and areas outside the concert seating was far enough away to not be a nuisance. The was just as enough opportunity, if not more opportunity to share the Gospel with those not paying much attention to Blues Traveler.

http://ref.ly/Mt10.16-25

You always have to choose your battles wisely, or look for the leading of the Lord especially in Scripture of how to handle confrontational situations the public, the law, and even rent-a-cops/security. It is necessary to have prayer and total reliance on the Holy Spirit in evangelism efforts.(Zech 4:6)

Even though the rain sprinkles fall, there are not enough to deter me from sharing Jesus in the power of the Holy Spirit. Went to Downtown Knoxville and said hello, God bless, Jesus Loves you as I handed people some Gospel Tracts.

Separated at Birth

April 25, 2010

You decide.