Tuesday was a wonderful day of outreach for the Christchurch (NZ) team. Four hours online, and the Riccarton outreach went long due to a great conversation: two & a half hours.
Online I alternated between text and video chats to pace myself.
My first video chat was with an extremely resistant guy who fought me on everything I said. It was a really draining conversation that I decided to end.
But then I got into a conversation with a professional looking guy who wasn’t resistant at all. He was going through a life crisis which he wanted to talk about - I listened and shared my empathy. I could tell he appreciated it. He was showing all the classic signs of false conversation, but then I wasn’t sure. I took him through the law, and the gospel. And I worked on his understanding of what saves us from hell. There didn’t seem to be much reaction. I continued to gently probe with questions when suddenly he started talking about how he felt like he had walked into a ditch. So I came back to the gospel, and explained that Christians can walk into ditches, even get caught up in very serious sin, but if they are Christians, God won’t leave them in a ditch, he disciplines those that he loves. And Jesus died on the cross to forgive us of all our sins. It seemed to be a God moment. Tears welled up in his eyes, overflowed down his cheeks and dropped onto his shirt. He seemed oblivious to the tears - he just listened. The moment passed and we continued to chat. I still didn’t know if he was a false convert, or a Christian battling sin. I emphasised the wonder of the gift of the gospel, and urged him to take drastic action in relation to sin. Before we disconnected, I let him know how to get in touch.
Later I was connected to a kid from Bulgaria! My first time talking to someone from there. He was very intelligent, and steeped in secular philosophy. I took him through the logic of the existence of God, the law, and the gospel. He was resistant, but he didn’t disagree with what I was explaining. When I shared the gospel, he gave a classic: “ahh, I get it now” response.
The outreach at Riccarton was awesome. The highlight conversation was the last one. Two guys walked past, and I tried to get their attention completely expecting them to ignore me. To my surprise one of them wanted to talk (the other didn’t)! I was able to pull the second guy into the conversation, and it went deep quick. Eventually, the first guy asked if we could sit down, which we did, and the three of us had a long conversation. From what I could gather, the first guy had Christian influence, and has some conviction of sin, but is trying to work out how much sin he can get away with! The second guy is “atheist”. We had a long discussion where the gospel was talked about a lot, as well as what repentance means. It was a long conversation, and I eventually felt like we had made as much progress as we would. We all shook hands at the end, and the both took tracts. I was shocked to realise the outreach had gone well over thirty minutes extra - but that is such a good thing, oh that more and more people will want to stop to talk about the most important questions in life! Lord, save people for your glory!
On Wednesday I was online and in the city. I wasn’t feeling the best when I was in the city, so I just sat at the southern entrance of Cathedral Square and handed out tracts to those passing by. By God’s grace, I was able to get into an easy conversation with two guys. It was a quick conversation, and at the end of it, one of them said, “that is the best explanation I’ve heard from a believer”. All glory to God for giving us the truth of the gospel, and I’m very grateful for those He has raised up to teach us how to effectively share the gospel: Ray Comfort and Ryan Hemelaar (and others).
From there, I went for a walk through the sitting looking for people to share with. I ended up having a good chat with a taxi driver (he eventually invited me to sit in his car). I then was able to challenge a guy at the corner of High & Cashel, before heading towards Ara. Unfortunately it started raining, so I decided to head home to go back online. I was walking a route I don’t normally take when God led me to a guy I ended up having a long conversation with. He was a Christian, but needed encouragement which I tried to give.
I finally made it home and was given the privilege of livestreaming for the first hour. God was very gracious in giving me a string of wonderful conversations where people came to grasp the gospel. How wonderful!
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.