For the first outreach of the year the team headed back into Brisbane city for an afternoon of conversations. It was actually a harder afternoon than usual as many people were still exhausted or hungover from the previous night, rejecting chatting because of their physical state. But after a number of attempts to engage in conversations, Fran was willing to chat.
Fran at first said that she thought she was a Christian and hoped she would go to Heaven but was unsure because currently she was living in sin. The first point of call was to make sure Fran was clear that our right standing before God is entirely on the basis of faith in the person and work of Jesus. Once Fran came to grasp that it was important to clarify what the life of a Christian will look like and how it will change. It was pointed out to her that although she knew the infomation about Christ, she didn't seem to be trusting in Him.
There was this moment late in the conversation were she visibly was moved as she had something to share and she started sharing her story about life decisions and current circumstances and the wrong things she was doing and why she was still living that way but she then finished her little story by saying, "Over the past few weeks I have really been feeling uneasy about my Christianity and a couple of days ago I prayed and asked God to send someone to talk to me about this!" The best part is that Fran doesn't even live in Brisbane, she had just come up for a visit for a few days!
God had answered her prayer and she left with clarity on the gospel, the realisation that upon beliving that Jesus had paid for her sin things in her life will change very significantly and took a gospel of John and was encouraged to start reading. Please be praying for Fran, that God would radically change her life, beginning from today, 1st Jan 2020.
This was followed by a converastion with Phillip an African man who was quite convinced that salvation was on the basis of faith and works. He rejected that salvation is a gift despite many simple displays and then was asked to read Romans 4:1-8. He read it and didn't argue again. It was amazing, this man respected the Bible as the word of God and instantly upon reading and understanding that righteousness is apart from works, he believed that. He then came to grasp the role works play in the life of a believer and said that it all made sense. He said he was very thankful for the conversation and was quite sure that eternity would be different because of this chat.
Praise God for such a wonderful beginning to 2020! There were a range of other conversations that took place but what a joy it is to see God answering prayer and working in people's lives through simple conversations had in a public square in Brisbane. Why not consider finding a team near you, coming on out and letting God glorify His name through you?
On Tuesday we gathered at Federation square cafe which is next to Flinders station as people were gathering to see fireworks and to enjoy the music. God has faithfully sent us total 8 labourers ! We mainly focused on handing out the gospel tracts this week but we also had many good conversations. In my case, I had good chat with tourists.
I met two Japanese tourists who were very friendly and open to chat. They could not speak english well but they used google translation app very effectively. So it was my first time sharing the whole gospel through Google translation app. Praise God for the technology!. After I shared the gospel and the lady told me “I will believe in Japan” as it was her last day in Australia. So I told her that death can come anytime and urged her to believe as soon as possible, she did not say “ok” but she smiled and nodded her. please pray for these 2 tourists so that they will really repent and put their trust in Jesus Christ.
One of other memorable conversation I had was, with a person called Mautias from Germany. He showed interest in ‘New years’ gospel tracts and willing to engage in conversation. after the Law & the Gospel was shared, it seemed like he was thinking about it and said “yeah, it was really good point to think about” but I had to mention that salvation is not about ‘thinking’ that it is good news rather we have to repent and 'believe' in this death and resurrection of Jesus Christ to be saved. I gently advised to reflect on the conversation that we had as he travels in Australia because his eternity is at stake. He agreed to do so. Please pray for Mautias.
Me and other people all together 8 or so handed out Gospel tracts tonight. I had a chat with a Muslim who admitted he is not perfect and believes the standard for heaven is perfection but he still is trying to work his way to heaven which he ultimately can never do. I told him Jesus who is perfect died for me, so I go to heaven based what He has done for me, He paid for my sins, I am now free and forgiven. Without Jesus' death on the cross you have works based salvation which is hopeless. Pray for the Muslim man and others who recieved the Gospel tracts.
Soli Deo Gloria !! Praise God who sustained us to preach the good news for His glory and for the lost souls !
A team of two headed out on New Year’s Eve evening to share the gospel of Jesus. Jermaine joined me. Like last year, there was an event happening in North Hagley Park, with bands and fireworks. So we made our way there for outreach.
We parked in the city, and had a fair distance to walk - but there were plenty of people about and much gospel opportunity on the way: handing out tracts, and we got into our first conversation which ended up being a long one.
It was with a young man who had an encounter with Jesus but was struggling with sin. To our surprise, he broke into tears when expressing his amazement that Jesus died on the cross to take away his sin - how amazing is the grace of God! This young man liked to talk, so we did a lot of patient listening. Now, everyone is at a different place with their sanctification - no doubt, so I didn’t want to pre judge this guy. But I talked about my own sin, and that as I have walked with Jesus, I have been growing in holiness. At various points, I challenged this young man on this. If we have faith, there will be repentance that will lead to obedience and a growing in holiness. Eventually, some subtle anger broke out of this young man in regard to this challenging. But we parted on good terms. He left with a few gospel tracts.
We continued on towards the park - there were a lot of people about and many opportunities to start conversations. But the Holy Spirit led us to a young man for what really felt like a divine appointment. On a whim, I decided to ask him what he thought happened after life - and he was quickly engaged. This led to a simple, but clear gospel presentation, which included a round or two of checking questions where he seemed to be quickly grasping the concepts of the gospel. He seemed genuinely appreciative. When challenged on what was stopping him from trusting in Christ tonight, he thought for a bit, and said he needed to work it through - which I appreciate, but I challenged him not to think too long, as we have no idea when we will die. He is from Sweden, and was flying home the next day (thankfully I heard no reports of plane crashes!). We talked about reading the Bible, and church. And he accepted three types of gospel tract. I hope to see this guy in heaven one day - may he become a part of the kingdom of God, by faith!
We finally made it to the event, we ended up only having time for one more conversation, before making the return walk back to the car. It was with two Catholic teens. Checking questions really came to the rescue here, because these guys just weren’t grasping that salvation was by faith and not by works (not surprising for Catholics)!
This was a real eye opener for Jermaine, who now has a fresh appreciation for thorough checking to make sure people are understanding the gospel. On the way back, we ended up working through the detailed mini flip chart together and discussing ways we can make the gospel really clear: like checking questions, trying not to monologue - by using questions to get people processing the concepts, and focusing on the concept of faith alone before moving to repentance.
I’m really grateful for the few hours we spent getting out to share Jesus. We leave the results in His hands, all glory to Him! :)
In normal fashion, the Operation 513 team, consisting this year of sixteen members, ended out the year and entered the new year in a mixture of evangelistic conversations and handing out tracts. Over the course of the evening over 10,000 tracts were handed out and many conversations were had.
The evening was filled with a range of responses both to the tracts and to the conversations. Many people were asked, "What do you think would happen to you if you didn't make it through 2020?" others were asked, "What would happen if you didn't make it to 2020?" and many responses sadly were, "I don't care" or "I don't want to talk about it". A range of conversations were even cut short by people saying, "I just want to keep doing my own thing (and play on my phone until midnight)". But amongst the apathy and rejection God in His providence had some people who were open, willing to engage and listen.
The first conversation was with a young couple, Tyler and Kyla. Tyler declared that he didn't think there was a God but didn't have any defense or reason for his position and Kyla said she thought she would be going to Heaven because she was good. They were shown how we know God exists, they were taken through the law and the gospel and Kyla came to understand it quite quickly. Tyler on the other hand, even after being able to answer the questions previously when asked at the end, what would he say to God, said, "I think I have lived a good enough life". He was once again shown that this would not be enough, rather would be the confirmation of his eternity in Hell. He was given the correct answer and was encouraged to ponder it in his own time.
There was also a converastion with Laud a Spanish speaking, French, Catholic who came to grasp the good news. She had struggled with understanding it for much of her life and she said she was sure this was a God send, that He had sent us to talk with her because she had really been struggling with it all over the past few days. She seemed to grasp the gospel but it is hard to know for certain because even throughout the conversation she had moments of clarity then went back to saying her old answers.
Overall it was an incredible night, the final gospel conversations of 2019 and the first conversations of 2020 were a priviledge and a great way to bring in the New Year. Why not find a time to join the team this year. Find an outreach that you can attend and come along. You will be glad you did!
Battle Log for Toowwong Village : Dec 31, 2019 1300 - 1500
Today, we had four team members of OPN 513 to serve. They are Col, Gary, Winnie and Hung. Despite it is already holiday period. God still gave each of us many divine appointment to preach the gospel to those hard reach people such as student from Mainland China and Hindu background people. I had just five as recap below, they were all unexpected targets that stopped and listened the full gospel. I could even had time to show them the First Ancient Novel revealed by God through the names of the ten patriarchs. They were all amazed at the all knowing almighty power of God ahead of time. By the way, they are all UQ students that still hanging around despite school term is over.
1) Indian girl stopped under the scorching noon sun and willingly engaged in conversation by moving to a shaded spot. She listened with full interest and agreed the salvation package of God is infallible. She is surrounded by Christian in her living circle. So I am sure it is only about time that she will submit herself to Christ.
2) A girl from Nanjing China, struggled with her shopping trolley that had lost balance because of bad stowage while crossing the road. I helped her to tow it to the bus station and share the gospel along the way. The Bus also just arrived as soon as we walked to the Bus stop. She had heard the nutshell of the gospel but possibly she was more impressed by my care and help.
3) Salina an UQ postgraduate from Zhuhai, China珠海. She was riding pass on a bike but was stopped by Col to accept a tract and prepared to ride on to her way. But the spirit urged me to stop her to hear the full gospel as well as the explanation of the first Ancient Noel. She was very friendly to me not like other Mainlander who keep a distance. She even encourage me that my Mandarin is perfect. After knowing she is from Zhuhai, then I know she identify with me being people of the southern part of China客氣. The sharing was good and she was all impressed. So pray for God's further nurturing action to harvest this first fruit.
4) Two girls got off the bus and appeared looking for the way to their destination. Again I volunteer to help and walked them to the student hostel they seemingly are moving in on their fresh arrival to Brisbane.兩女，One girl is from Yunnan雲南，and one from Beijing北京. Both appeared very friendly to me and listen to the full gospel as well as the First Ancient Noel. The girl from Yunnan actually asked for referral to near by church (CCCB St Lucia) and Christian group ( Power to Change)
5) Finch from Beijing also lives at the same hostel of the two girls. 北京 I stopped him for a chat right after my conversation with the two girls. He willingly listen up every thing I share and politely thanks for the gospel message. This was definitely yet another divine appointment that may bear fruit in His time.
It’s Sunday afternoon. I’m slipping into holiday mode, I have a bit of a headache, and I’m leading my daughters on outreach again - which is great! - but is more work. So, admittedly dragging my feet a little, we headed out to share the gospel in Cashel Mall.
And then we met up with Willem (Operation 513 Team Leader in Timaru) - I forgot he was joining us today - and so I was encouraged by that. And then Jermaine turned up with his children! So it ended up being a team of eight. Praise the Lord. So there were three flip charts running, and heaps of kids handing out tracts. I was also very encouraged to see Willem and Jermaine into gospel conversations quickly.
For me, it was a little harder than usual to get gospel conversations started. I’m wondering if the new front page of my flip chart is too direct: “What happens after life?” - I guess a lot of people don’t like thinking about the afterlife.
But an old man did approach me. One of the kids had given him a "good person" tract, and he wanted to talk about it. It turns out he was a seventh day adventist, so he wanted to talk about the fourth commandment. I had to be patient and listen a lot. Eventually, I cut to the chase and asked him what he had to do to go to heaven. His answer was: “Love the Lord and follow His commandments”, and so this was my opportunity to explain that it was impossible for us to follow His commandments - we needed a saviour and we are saved only by faith in His sacrifice!
My last conversation of the outreach started without the assistance of the flip chart, I ended up talking with two English tourists about the gospel. It was a short conversation, but they took tracts as a follow up.
So things don’t always go the way you hope, but Jesus has given the command to go. And I want to obey out of my love for Him - no matter how I’m feeling or the results. And He is a wonderful master and is worthy to be served. I’m grateful for the rest I am able to have over this holiday period!
There were many people in Cashel Mall hunting Boxing Day sales. A team of three set up flip charts to have gospel conversations with any willing to stop.
For me, there were three highlight conversations.
The first came very early in the outreach. It was with a young couple: he was interested, she was not! But they stayed to go through my new flip chart. It turns out they both had Catholic schooling, so there was a focus on getting them to understand the grace of God through faith alone in Jesus' sacrifice for their sin.
I then had another follow up conversation with someone I’ve been talking to since the start of the year. This will have been about the 7th time we’ve spoken. They already understand the gospel, so I didn’t try to swing the conversation to spiritual things. But they eventually did. And we ended up talking for at least an hour. The focus of the conversation was on whether we are saved by faith alone. This person was arguing that it’s not faith alone, because they also have to turn away from sin. They wanted to know why I could sin and still be a Christian, where he couldn’t. The issue was that there is a particular sin this person wants to keep enjoying as well as accepting Christ. The answer is that, it’s about our attitude towards sin. Yes, sadly, Christians sin - but we hate it. Yes, we are saved only by our faith alone in Jesus payment of our sin on the cross - but faith is always connected to repentance.
It was at this point that I turned to the last page on the new flip chart. It has two pictures on it: a man wearing a backpack, and a picture looking out a plane window. This flip chart page is new to me - but this was the perfect time to use it! I literally pulled out my phone and read the description on how to use this page verbatim:
“This man carries his backpack with him everywhere, and has done so his whole life in fact. But one day he is on a plane and pilot announces that the plane is going to crash. Someone hands him a parachute to put on. Problem is, it won't go on with his backpack still on his back. So he needs to make the choice, does he take off the backpack and put on the parachute and be saved, or keep the backpack on, and reject the parachute and so die in the plane crash.
In the same way, with your Buddhism (or new age beliefs or particular sin you love), you may have been believing it your whole life. But now you have come to realise that it won't save you from the judgement to come, and instead you need to trust that Jesus died for your sin. But trusting that Jesus paid for your sin is incompatible with still believing in Buddhism which says you need to work your way to heaven.
So what are you going to do? Keep your Buddhism and therefore reject the free gift of forgiveness offered by Jesus, OR put away your Buddhism and trust only in Jesus to pay for your sins?”
It was timely! Their response to this was: “can I wear my backpack on my front, and put the parachute on my back?” But they understood the message. We parted ways with them still counting the cost of following Jesus. I will continue to pray for this person.
The last conversation was with a young man who had a Christian grandfather, but the family has drifted from church life. This guy figured he would be good enough to go to heaven, and so was shocked to learn that the standard of good was perfection. He was relieved to see the flip chart page which shows Jesus taking the fire ball (representing our sin) on his back. He came to understand how we can be forgiven, through faith in Jesus. He had good questions, which we spent time answering.
Very grateful for the opportunity to share the gospel on this Boxing Day! The results are in the hands of God. But thank you for continuing to pray for this ministry. And be encouraged to get involved! It’s a joy to be able to share this good news, we can’t keep it to ourselves. :)
On Saturday, as usual we gathered at Starbucks and started with word and prayer. It was great weather and the sun did not go down till 8pm so there were many people to share the gospel and hand out the gospel tracts. Also, God has graciously sent eight labourers this week, Praise God!.
We had privilege to talk to Indian couple who were traveling in Melbourne and it was their last week in Melbourne. They were very gentle, kind and willing to examine the message we shared. They heard our message with patience and answered the questions honestly but they kept on saying “yeah, I believe Jesus also” it was typical Hindu response, Polytheism. So, we shared John 14:6 and explained that Jesus did not say he is ‘one of the way or one of the truth or one of the life’ but The Way, The Truth and The Life when the couple heard the exclusive claim by Jesus Christ they seemed to be quite uncomfortable and said “I respect your religion so I would like my religion to be respected also” but we shared that his eternity is at stake and we really do love them to share the truth although it might be uncomfortable. Please pray for the Indian couple with us.
We also had chat with a person who said he knew the gospel and that he is practicing Catholic and seemed very confident in his religion. but when we asked Him if he could explain to us what the gospel or good news is, He could not give proper answer so we shared the summary of the gospel once again just to remind him that our salvation is by faith and faith alone in Jesus Christ that He died and rose again for our sins. This person had to leave shortly after conversation but we thank God that we could have shared the gospel. please pray for him.
From Huy Do:
Praise God for His faithfulness in this Saturday’s evangelism, I talked with a man called Daniel, he spoke of how his mother was spiritual and he used to go to church but has since left. He denied the existence of the God of the Bible, which provoked me to challenge his presuppositions. This greatly displayed the folly of his world view, the absurdity of claiming that there is no God. The Gospel was preached and he was greatly intrigued by that Gospel. He had to leave soon but told me to meet up with him the following day at the same location, praise God for His mercy. I also met up with a person that I had talked to a while ago by the name of Morris, he had talked to nearly all the evangelists in the city, yet he still had not found faith. I never knew much about his personal life until today when he revealed that more, that he was in a prosperity gospel church and was bitter at God at how others were succeeding at how he was not and left bitter at God for that. I told Him that despite how he feels about God not loving him, God still manifested His love towards him in Jesus Christ, and how his demands for the temporal blessings of God is absurd when He has already offered His eternal blessing of everlasting life in Christ. I had told him that although he seeks after worldly riches and earthly pleasures, the only true place where he can find actual riches and pleasure is Christ. After what I had said in encouraging him to run back to Christ, my fellow worker, Riff, told him about a local church in his local suburb where he will hopefully hear the biblical Gospel preached. All in all, thank the Lord for His faithfulness in shutting our lips, that He might speak in our place.
Thank you for praying for our Christmas outreaches in Brisbane city over the past 2 weeks. It was a great success with over 40,000 gospel tracts going into people's hands and plenty of gospel conversations had.
We rejoice that God even raised up new labourers to join us for a number of the nights. It was exciting to see these new labourers step out of their comfort zones to hand out tracts for possibly the first time and even start conversations with the lost, asking them, "What do you think happens after you die?"
Please now pray that those who heard or read the message would come to salvation. To God be all the glory!
If you have been considering coming along to an outreach but haven't yet, why not come along to an outreach near you: https://www.operation513.com/street-evangelism-teams/