Thursday, January 26, 2012

"Can we pray for you?"

Last Saturday night in downtown Fort Worth, one particular young man wouldn't budge while listening to the preaching of gospel.

After a few minutes he slowly turned his back and began to walk away. He looked troubled. I walked towards him with a friend and from a bit of a distance I called out to him saying, "Sir!"

He turned his head back to look.

I continued…"Sir, we are Christians and we are with the group of people that are preaching. I know this may sound weird but…how can we pray for you?" "Do you need prayer for anything?" I inquired.

(Keep in mind that it is very rare for me to ask this. I typically don' fact I can't even recall a handful of times that I approached someone with the question "Can I pray for you?")

"Yes." He quickly responded as he turn around and started to walk towards us.

Very soberly he looked at me and said, "My good friend shot himself last Thursday."

Big sigh.

"I am so very sorry to hear this…I'm so sorry." I said while shaking my head.

"Yeah, we are really sorry." My friend Amy added.

"What is your name?" I asked.

"Shay". He said.

"And what was your friends name?" I questioned.

"Kyle." He replied.

"Hmmmm, that's interesting."

Then I pointed my arm and extended my finger to the open air preacher on the box and said, "That's interesting…because the young man on the box right over there is named 'Kyle'."

Shay looked stunned like a deer in headlights.

He immediately teared up and I proceeded to tell him the Gospel.

"I know that there probably aren't many words that can comfort you, Shay, during this difficult loss but just remember that Jesus Christ has the words of life…eternal life."

I continued. "Shay, if Kyle were to come back today and talk with you I know what he would say. He would tell you to repent of your sins and to put all of your trust in Jesus Christ who died on the cross and rose from the dead."

He intensely listened and hung on every word.

As I was talking to him the evangelism team was packing up and within seconds the men on the team began to gather around him. I introduced him to Josh, then to Greg and also to Cole.

I explained to Josh about his loss and after a few words, Josh put his hand on his shoulder and we all prayed for him.

You could see the gratitude in his eyes.

I looked up and Kyle was standing behind him.

I pointed behind him and said, "Shay, I want you to meet Kyle."

Shay's face lit up with a new ray of hope. As if he had known Kyle for years. He had a look on his face that was priceless. On my way home the thought of him moved me to tears.

"Good to meet you, man." Shay said.

"Hey, good to meet you, bro." Kyle responded.

We invited him to church and he gave hugs to a couple people on the team.

May God save that young man.

You just never know who you will come in contact with and what has happened in their lives. It was only 48 hours prior to our meeting that Shay received the horrific news that his friend killed himself. And the Lord was faithful to send him hope through the preaching of the Gospel.

I pray that this small encounter will encourage you to ask someone this week, or perhaps today or tonight, if you "can pray for them". Then share the Gospel with them and leave them with a tract.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Are you in a good church?

"When you choose a church you are choosing the people you want to have around you when you die." Arthur Holmes

What a powerful quote from Arthur Holmes. Are you in a good church where you are surrounded around people that care for your soul? Do they deeply love the Lord? Is there a solid message being preached from the pulpit Sunday after Sunday and week after week? Perhaps you are looking for a good church and are having a hard time...

Rest assured, there are a few ways to find a good church. First, if you're in the Dallas/Fort Worth area I highly recommend the church that I attend...Sovereign Joy Community Church (SJCC) in Keller, Texas. Sovereign Joy is comprised of a people devoted to the Scriptures and committed to live for the glory of God. Where other churches have emphasized church growth, and seeker sensitive presentations of the gospel, SJCC desires to strike at something more biblical and historic.

If you're not in Dallas/Fort Worth, I'd recommend visiting 9Marks, which has a church finder. Type in your zip code, and see which churches are near you. The churches listed on 9Marks subscribe to good doctrine.

In addition to that, The Master's Seminary posts a map where you can find Master's graduates that are pastoring churches in your area. Just because a pastor graduated from Master's doesn't mean he's solid, but chances are good that he is. At the very least you'll know he received solid Biblical training and the church where he serves would be a good one to check out.

For those of you looking for solid churches, may God bless you in your endeavor to find one! And as you look online, I'd encourage you to list to a wonderful message from the church that I attend. It's called "Living in Light of Eternity". Here's the direct link to listen:

Sunday, January 15, 2012

A Poem by Trish

Cling to Jesus. There's no other way!

“Why Jesus?” You ask. “What's He got to say?”

Let me start over and tell you the biblical way.

You see you've broken a law you can not pay.

If you've told one lie it will be Hell on that dreadful Day.

“One LIE!?” You plead. “You've got to be kidding me!”

Oh yes, one lie is all it takes. You see the bible says all liars will have their place…

In the lake of fire where there is no rest.

“What!? How can it be…I've done nothing wrong and I've been the best.”

If you've broken one commandment you've broken them all.

You can consider your self a liar, adulterer, blasphemer and that's not all.

If you've hated your brother you are a murderer at heart and if you've stolen one thing it's too late to start over and pay for what you've taken. Because time doesn't erase sin only one payment can.

But wait there's hope!

“Hope?” You inquire.

“Hope for me? I've been nothing but a liar. I've sinned against God. I deserve Hell fire.”

Yes! Hope for you to escape.

And there's only one way and we're back to the start.

You need Jesus Christ and He'll give you a new heart.

Christ lived a perfect life for sinners like you and me. He hung on a cross upon Calvary. He was beaten and bruised for our wickedness. It was as if He committed the crime even though he was spotless. He rose from the dead in 1 2…3 days on time! And conquered the grave and the victory is thine.

What you must do is call out to Him.

Humble yourself, repent, and turn from your sin.

He will instantly translate you from darkness to light.

He'll reconcile you to God and you'll be His delight.

Pleasing to the Father. Isn't that what you want?

There's no time to waste. Tomorrow may never come.

If you hear the call of God today, turn to the Son!

Cling to Jesus - By Trish Ramos