Friday, July 15, 2011

Yes, This Really Happened To Me In The Ministry

The great commission was given to the church to go into all the world and preach the gospel. Of course the gospel is the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus and if you believe it you are saved. The commission was not given to the apostles only or it would have ended when the last one died. It was not given to the individual because part of the commandment is to baptize and that is the responsibility of the church.
The Bible tells us to bear fruit as a christian. We must bear fruit for the sake of the lost and also that we may be blessed and know the joy that comes from seeing a soul trust Christ as their Saviour. Dan. 12:3 says, "And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever."
Many today do not participate in soul-winning or door-to-door visitation. They omit this blessed part of the christian's life for varied reasons. Some are afraid of rejection. That happens for sure. Some are afraid they will knock on the door of a "mean" person. This too happens though not nearly as frequently as most imagine. Some even go so far as to say this is old-fashioned and ineffective. Regardless of the excuses it is still our obligation. Do not get me wrong, I do not think you ever get over the butterflies every time you approach a new door.
I miss being able to physically visit as I have for over 40 years. To me it was an adventure. While serving in Miami Fl. I remember one particular day of visitation.
We had with us at the time a family I had attended Bible college with who had surrendered to the mission field. On Saturday we divided up and went soul-winning. I took the missionary with me and the senior pastor took the bus pastor with him. Our plan was to go around the block in separate directions and meet on the other side. As we were nearing the other side I did not see the other team. We walked on a porch and knocked. A gruff voice from inside shouted "Who is it?" I identified myself and asked if we could talk with him. He said no and told us to get off his porch! I even asked if we could just leave him some material to read. Again he said no and get off his porch. I turned to the missionary and said we had tried and began to leave. Then I decided I was not going to let the devil and a grouch get the best of me. I knocked again. Again the man asked who it was. I repeated our introduction and said I was not going to leave until he at least opened the door and took the material.
All of a sudden the door opened violently and there in our faces was the barrel of a gun! I was shocked. The missionary grabbed me and pushed me to the front as a shield (what a friend!) After a moment we heard laughter coming from the inside of the house. It was the pastor and bus director. It so happened this was the home of a friend of the pastor. Needless to say we were both relieved and nervous. I still have not lived down that visit.
Do not make excuses or neglect witnessing. It is always an adventure and we are told that we "...shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him."