After a wonderful day off on Monday, it was back to work with outreaches in Riccarton on Tuesday, and in the City and outside the Hospital on Wednesday.
It was great being back in Riccarton, after being in Papanui last Tuesday instead. A reasonable amount of tracts were distributed. And three decent conversations were had - one of which was a highlight conversation of recent memory.
The conversation occurred near the end of the outreach, a guy walked past with the name of a local company I recognised printed on his top. This was a natural conversation starter and we talked briefly about people we both knew. The conversation quickly moved to what I was doing on the sidewalk, and into spiritual things. I ended up briefly sharing my testimony of how I became a Christian, and he became engrossed, as it seemed to parallel where he was at.
He went from saying he had a few minutes to chat, to being willing to sit down and discuss the Gospel at length. At the end of the conversation, he admitted he wasn’t convinced (yet), but I could tell our conversation was timely. He gladly took a gospel booklet, a tract, and details of how to get in contact if he wanted to. I was very encouraged by this conversation.
Wednesday started a little different to normal. I got to do some email evangelism. Let me explain. Earlier in the year, I had a wonderful conversation with a young man in Cathedral Square. At the end of that conversation, I gave him a tract, told him my name, and said that he could contact me through the web site, via email.
Well, this young man got back to me a few days latter! He had important questions - which I responded to. But, sadly, that was it. He never emailed back.
Well last Friday, I bumped into this guy again. I asked if he had received my email, and he said he hadn’t but that he still had questions. It turns out that my emails had been caught in his spam folder (I wonder why!), and we now have a good email connection.
So I started the day with responding to his questions. And he has responded already! I’m looking forward to being able to continue that conversation, he is even keen to catch up face to face again.
But the first proper outreach of the day was in Cathedral Square.
There was a girl sitting close to where I set up my flip chart, so I went over and offered her a tract. She wasn’t keen to chat, so I left her to read it.
Later, I moved down to the corner of Colombo Street and Cashel Mall, and lo and behold, this same young girl walks up and wants to talk. She could see that she had failed the good person test (what the tract was about) and wanted to discuss - which I was happy to do. She ended up taking a contact card for my local church!
After lunch, I moved to the Hospital, but it was a very slow, not many tracts were accepted, and I couldn’t get a conversation to start as much as I tried. I wonder if I was feeling apprehensive in light of the abortion outreaches we have started in this spot on Fridays?
So after an hour, I decided to head back into the city. Just as I moved off, Chris Harris (a retired NZ cricket player) came down the steps. I had an opportunity to interact with him briefly, and he accepted a Gospel tract. I was encouraged by that.
Back in the city for a final hour of outreach, I ended up having two conversations. One was a very encouraging follow up chat with the homeless guy I had spoken to on Saturday. The second was a long conversation with a young man I had known from church circles about ten years ago, but it didn’t seem like he was still involved with a local church. I did my best to encourage him with the Gospel.
I finished the day with some letterbox dropping. As I was walking down a lane, a man came out of his house and wanted to know what I was up to. This turned into a wonderful opportunity to sit down with him on his porch to discuss the Gospel!
As I’m writing this report, I’m realising how many wonderful opportunities I had to share Christ, in spite of what felt like two days of slow, hard Gospel work. As always, I leave the results with Him: all the glory is His.
Christchurch (NZ) Team
Heads out on to the streets of Christchurch usually 6 days a week to various locations.
Including Fridays in Cathedral Square from 12:30pm and in Cashel Mall after that till 3:30pm. Also Sundays in Cashel Mall 1:30pm till 3:30pm.