Battle Log


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.

Contact Glen Richards or Andy Barlow for more information.

Sunday 12 January 2020

Posted by Posted 12 January 2020, 9:07 PM by Glen Richards. Permalink

A busy few days of outreach for the Christchurch (NZ) team.  Thursday @ the Eastgate and Northlands bus stops.  Friday: the first gospel + abortion outreach of the year outside Christchurch Hospital, open air preaching in Cathedral Square, flip charting in Cashel Mall, and the evening outreach in the city.  Sunday: afternoon Cashel Mall outreach.

Thursday at the bus stops:  Being the school holidays, there were periods where there weren't many people around (as per the picture), but as I’m looking back on my log of gospel interactions - it’s very long!  The most encouraging thing was all the follow up conversations I had.  I would approach people to start a conversation, and I would get responses of: “oh, you’ve already talked to me” - I’m just not remembering all the people I’m talking to!

I had two positive follow ups, and two “negative” ones - but all of them encouraging.

The first was with a young man at Eastgate he remembered the building / builder, universe / universe maker analogy - and it stuck with him, as he said it back to me right at the start.  But when I asked him what the good news was, he said that we had to be good people - wrong answer!  So I was able to go over the law and the gospel with him again.  He is very open, and so I challenged him to respond to the gospel today.

The next follow up was with the older man I mentioned in a recent report that I had talked to at Northlands.  This time I saw him at Eastgate.  I challenged him about the way to heaven, and he responded with: “I don’t want to talk about it”.  Fair enough, so we parted ways.  Funnily enough, later in the afternoon, once I had moved to Northlands - I bumped into this man for a third time!  I promised him I wasn’t following him.  :)

The third one was with another young man, but this guy he had a good grasp of the gospel.  He had obviously been reading the tract and pondering it.  After a good conversation, he gladly took more tracts and a Bible - he seemed very keen to start reading it.

The last one was with a young man who wasn’t really keen to talk, and yet stuck around to engage with me.  It turns out he was a muslim.  He was challenged about the problem of how God can give justice and mercy - before he moved on to catch his bus.

I was also very encouraged to bump into a friend that I hadn’t seen for years.  I used to play indoor cricket with him.  We had a good catch up.  The last time I talked to him about spiritual things, he had said he had been involved with churches, but wasn’t interested any more.  Well now, his tune was different.  He had recently lost some loved ones to death, and was really pondering the after life.  I challenged him on if he would go to heaven - and his response was: “I’ve said the sinner's prayer” - as though it’s some magic spell.  Sadly, the sinner's prayer has inoculated many people into thinking they are right with God when they are not.  So we had a discussion on how we get right with God (a repentant faith in Christ) and how we can know that is genuine.

One last interaction that stood out to me at Northlands was with a lady whom I asked if she had ever thought about what happens after life.  She said that she had been talking about that very subject with someone in the cafe at her work.  She didn’t want to chat, but she did want a tract and said she would read it!

Of all the gospel ministry that occured on Friday, I will focus on the lunchtime open air preaching.  It was one of the most difficult times I've preached.  For a start, I was on my own.  Next, I attracted lots of hecklers, which was great - but some of our regular hecklers stirred things up which made interaction really difficult.  I felt quite grieved at how people were mocking God (I don’t care if they mock me).  God is not mocked.  And one day they will face Him.  But I’m thankful for the patience of God!  I hope some heard the gospel and will be saved from His wrath.  Near the end, a young man approached me and started asking me questions about climate change.  I said I would talk to him once I finished.  He waited, and we ended up having a one to one discussion where I tried to share the gospel, but he seemed so blind - his focus was on the fact that there was no planet B, that he couldn’t see that there was no life B, which is a much bigger problem for everyone!  Sadly he refused a tract on environmental grounds.

I know this report is getting long, but after a rest on Saturday, I was feeling really fresh for the Sunday afternoon outreach in Cashel Mall - the weather was hot.  A team of six were out - including my three daughters.

The highlight conversation was a walk up with five young people.  I managed to get them to stop, and then get them to engage through apologetics.  Reading their reactions, I could tell one of them was really uncomfortable - she was one of the professing ‘atheists’.  And so I gave them the option to end the conversation, and they took it - two tracts were taken.  But I was really surprised when one of the girls didn’t leave with her friends.  She wanted to know what church I was from, and she said it was really brave what I was doing.  She said she had been a Christian, but wasn’t any more.  But I could see that she was really thinking heavily about the important questions of life.  She was one of the ones that took a tract.  She wanted to know how she could get in touch - which I told her.  I could tell she had deep questions, but she had to go.  I pray that her questions will be answered, and that she would understand the gospel from the tract - that she would be saved by God and for His glory.  Amen.

Wednesday 8 January 2020

Posted by Posted 8 January 2020, 6:00 PM by Glen Richards. Permalink

“But that’s impossible for me,'' she said.  She didn’t realise how insightful her words were:

And the disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said to them again, “Children, how difficult it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” And they were exceedingly astonished, and said to him, “Then who can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” - Mk 10:24–27

This is what I deal with daily, on the streets of Christchurch, people hearing the gift of Jesus, but counting the cost and knowing that it is completely impossible (in their own effort) to be saved.  And yet, I trust in the wonderful words of Jesus in Mark 10:27: “With man it is impossible, but not with God.  For all things are possible with God.”

And yet, this young Muslim girl had a similar reaction to the rich young ruler:

And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” Disheartened by the saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. - Mk 10:21–22

The difference with her was Islam, instead of riches.  She understood that she would have to let Islam go - that was impossible for her “, but not with God.  For all things are possible with God.”

This was the last gospel conversation of an eventful afternoon outreach in Riccarton on Tuesday.  A great way to start back after a holiday.  The conversation was actually with two young Muslim girls.  They smiled and accepted offered tracts - which surprised me.  So I asked if they ever through about the afterlife, and a full and friendly gospel conversation developed.  The conversation ended up focusing on how God can be just and merciful without either being compromised.  The only solution that made sense was the perfect sacrifice of God the son: Jesus for the sin of the world.  They understood, but were (naturally) resistant.

And yet

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. -Ro 1:16

So I leave these young ladies in His hands.  I pleaded with them to read through the Afterlife tracts they had received and to respond to the gospel.  We couldn’t shake hands (due to their culture), but we parted (pictured) with smiles.

The outreach started with a conversation with three young high school students enjoying their summer break.  They were keen to give the flip chart a go.  Two of them became resistant, and so some apologetics were deployed.  But the other guy was interested, and arguing on my side.  Eventually, I said, “Look, I have some good news to share, do you want to hear it?  Because your friend does.”  They disengaged, and left their friend to me, where I was able to slowly but surely explain the gospel - it was wonderful seeing him come to an understanding and saying that there was nothing stopping him from trusting Christ’s payment for his sin.  I challenged to do so, and asked him to get in touch.

Later, something special happened.  Mr. Angry walked past!  I pray for this guy approximately weekly, and I had just been praying for him in the morning.  I hadn’t seen him for quite a while - and now he comes past, I was very encouraged.  He started spewing his usual scorn.  But I just couldn’t stop smiling.  At one point he started to cross the road to get away from me, but he didn’t see a van coming round the corner!  I had to warn him, and when he saw it, he was forced to walk back to me, giving me some more time to interact with him.  I still don’t know his name, but I’ll keep praying for him, and God willing, I will continue to see him and that I’ll have more opportunity to share the truth of Jesus.

As Mr. Angry left, I turned around and got a fright!  A young couple were standing right in front of the flip chart.  She was even touching it - they were very curious.  So I was straight into another gospel conversation.  They seemed to understand (I used plenty of checking questions) but there was no interest that I could see.  And yet, they have heard the gospel - it is the power of God for salvation!

Today I was in the city for two outreaches, one before lunch and one after.  I had a number of conversations, including a few follow ups.  I had two highlights.

The first was encountering two young men who had already been primed having heard the gospel from some Christian friends at their high school!  I was very encouraged.  So after re-explaining the gospel, we ended up spending time discussing some very good questions they had.  Unfortunately, one of them received a phone call and they had to go.

The last conversation of the day was with another two Muslims - this time young men on holiday from Singapore.  I was able to share the gospel before learning they were Muslims, and then the conversation ended up going down the same track as with the young girls the day before: how can God be merciful and also just.  The only answer that makes sense is Jesus.  Sadly these young guys were not interested at all.  But yet, they have heard the gospel!

Great to be back to work!  Thanks for your prayers; and also your financial support that is allowing me to do this.  Please be praying for labourers for the harvest - and I encourage you to be an answer to your own prayers - come and join me in the joy of sharing the wonderful good news of Jesus our King! :)

Tuesday 31 December 2019

Posted by Posted 2 January 2020, 6:19 AM by Glen Richards. Permalink

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! :)

Sunday 29 December 2019

Posted by Posted 31 December 2019, 2:57 PM by Glen Richards. Permalink

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!

Thursday 26 December 2019

Posted by Posted 31 December 2019, 1:31 PM by Glen Richards. Permalink

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. :)

Tuesday 24 December 2019

Posted by Posted 25 December 2019, 6:46 PM by Glen Richards. Permalink

On Sunday afternoon, a team of four were in Cashel Mall: my three daughters joined me.

We split into pairs.  Haley and Julia found spots to hand out tracts, while Dani and I ran a flip chart together.

Dani and I had two good gospel conversations on the flip chart during the hour we were out.  I would pass over to Dani to do pages of the flip chart, and then she would pass back to me - a great way to get practice sharing the wonderful good news.

The first conversation was with a man with a Catholic background whom it was ingrained that, as long as he was good enough - he would be going to heaven.  Going through the law, and an explanation of the seriousness of sin, was very foreign to this man - and concerning.  He stayed to hear the good news.

The last conversation started when two teens were scooting past, and one of them saw the flip chart and wanted to give it a try.  They were engaged, and so a long conversation occurred.  They clearly understood the bad news, and then the glorious good news - and were able to repeat it back multiple times.  When asked what would stop them from accepting the gift of Jesus, nothing was - even after considering the cost.  So they were challenged to do so.  The accepted follow up tracts.

Haley and Julia were able to give away a number of tracts before we packed up and headed home.  So wonderful to see my daughters growing in their desire to communicate the good news of Jesus to the lost!

On Tuesday afternoon, I was able to find time to finish building a new flip chart (front page pictured) - with the help of my brother and his power tools to drill the holes for the metal bracket at the top.

I was able to use it for the first time on the Christmas Eve outreach in Riccarton.  There weren't as many people out as I was hoping - I guess most people drive into the mall for parking.  But I still was able to have a number of good conversations.

My first conversation was with a young man who said he was going to Valhalla.  But he said he loved talking about this stuff (the after life) and had grown up with a Christian background.  He got through the law before he had to go - he took a tract.

I had another guy interested in the flip chart immediately after the first conversation.  Sadly, he too bailed after hearing the law - he also took a tract.

But the highlight conversation was with three young men.  It was a challenging conversation, where they were grilling me with multiple questions at the same time.  It started off light hearted, but once they started understanding the logic of what I was explaining they sobered up.  Part way through the conversation, I had another two guys join in, and start peppering me with questions too!  It was too hard to deal with the new guys as well, so they took tracts and moved on.  The original guys heard the gospel before they moved on - but at least two of them were very resistant to it.  I would have loved to have more time with them.  They also accepted tracts.

Well, Merry Christmas!  God willing, some of the people talked to, or who received tracts will come to a proper understanding of why Jesus was born and will trust in His sacrifice!  Soli Deo Gloria!

Friday 20 December 2019

Posted by Posted 24 December 2019, 10:59 AM by Glen Richards. Permalink

This Thursday we were at Northlands before heading to Eastgate for bus stop outreach.

Again, I relied on tracts to get conversations started.  And, sure enough, God brought along some people who were willing to chat.

I had a great conversation with two young ladies - one of whom said very early on that she thought she would be going to hell, which was surprising.  We dialoged through the law and the gospel, and then I started working on confirming that they understood it.  A few times through checking questions and I think understanding was coming.  But at the same time, there was a hardening to the message.  The cost to accept the gift seemed too great.

There was an encouraging encounter with a Christian who recognised the Eternity tract I handed to her - knowing the story behind it.  As she left, she said warmly: “this is the first time I’ve ever received a gospel tract!”.  God willing, as the years go by, may many people continue to receive tracts for the first time in Christchurch (NZ).

I had three other conversations at Northlands before heading to Eastgate: 1) A follow up with two guys I had talked to outside the bus exchange a previous Friday night - they were not interested in the gospel.  2) With two guys who had just finished high school - the building; builder / universe; universe maker analogy really helped and they listened well.

But the last conversation was with an older man who walked past and asked something about going on holiday.  I offered him a tract, and he said he already had one - so I asked him what he thought about it.  It turns out that this man had been part of a church all his early life (at least), but when I probbed him on what Christianity was all about he was clueless.  He suddenly didn’t want to talk, and turned to go.  But I stopped him, and said that this was the most important thing to think about.  I gave him a detailed tract (After Life) and asked him to read it through.  He accepted it.

At Eastgate, I had many conversations, including with an atheist, and a young man who was wrestling with some life struggles but who heard the gospel.

Friday followed the usual schedule, starting with the gospel + abortion outreach in the morning (which I posted about on the Project 139 Facebook page)

The weather changed to sour near the end of that outreach, and by the time we made it into Cathedral Square, there weren’t too many people about.  Andy and I sang a Christmas Carol with Kelvin the busker, before we headed off in search of gospel conversations.

Andy had a long conversation with a very resistant tourist (German I think), And I had conversations with two sets of people from Holland: a Christian couple, and then a young man who heard, but was resistant to the gospel.

Later in the afternoon, I open air preached and immediately following that Andy & I had a great follow up conversation with three young people.

We finished the afternoon outreach with Andy open air preaching.

The weather had improved for the evening outreach, and there were lots of people out  - I guess many were celebrating the last day of work?  There was a team of three: Andy, Mike and myself.

Andy and Mike seemed to have some great (long) conversations (as pictured).

I had two noteworthy gospel conversations: the first was with a German tourist, but the stand out was with a man who was very drunk.  He couldn’t believe I was asking him about God, but he sat me down wanting to talk.  Verbally, he was very resistant to the gospel, but he wasn’t hiding how deeply he was being impacted - the muscles in his jaw were working over time, as he processed and understood what I was saying.  He kept reflecting back to his mother who was “very spiritual”.  He took a detailed tract, and I told him to put it in his pocket and read it in the morning - I hope he does.

Thursday 19 December 2019

Posted by Posted 23 December 2019, 6:46 PM by Glen Richards. Permalink

Thursday - just after midnight - saw the opening of the new Star Wars movie.  The Christchurch (NZ) team had some Star Wars tracts left over from an outreach a few years ago (pictured in storm trooper outfits) and so it was time to give them away (minus the outfits this time)!  A team of two: Jermaine joined me.

Our plan was to turn up a couple of hours before the movie started and hand out tracts to those heading in.  We were too early - there was no one around, but God provided some wonderful follow up conversations while we waited.

The picture theater is opposite the bus exchange, and a couple of guys I’ve talked to many times before (and who I regularly pray for), were heading into it.  We headed over, and we were able to continue the conversation - they had a friend I hadn’t met before.  They invited me into the bus exchange to talk further... when I encountered yet another young man that I’ve had two good gospel conversations with before - he had some other friends I hadn’t talked to.  And then a security guard walked up… because she wanted a Star Wars gospel tract!  I couldn’t talk to all of them, so Jermaine talked with the new group, while I talked with the original group.

The two guys I have talked to many times before were still no more interested in the gospel.  But their friend was curious and so I focused on taking them through the law and the gospel.  It was difficult, because one of the other guys kept interrupting and trying to take the conversation off track.  In the end, I only had time to go through the law as their bus came.  But a detailed tract (After Life) was received.

The guys Jermaine was talking to had also left, so we headed back over to the picture theater to start handing out the Star Wars tracts.  It worked out great, as there was only one entrance - So Jermaine took one side, and I the other.  And, sure enough, plenty of Star Wars fans started appearing (many in costume) and the tracts started going out.  I had a gospel conversation with one young atheist while he was waiting for a friend.

At one point early on, one of the people that worked for the picture theater came out wondering what we were doing, when Jermaine told him his response was: “Oh, that’s wonderful - we need more people doing this!”  He was a Christian!  He helped us by collecting discarded tracts (inside the theater) and giving them back to us so we could give them to someone else.

All the tracts we had were distributed - about 200.  And the guy who worked in the theater took the last few and said he would give them out.

This outreach was a bit of a risk, as I didn’t know if it would work.  But God was faithful and brought us many opportunities for the gospel as we stepped out in faith.  I was very encouraged.  May He save some through these feeble efforts - all glory to Him!

Wednesday 18 December 2019

Posted by Posted 18 December 2019, 6:09 PM by Glen Richards. Permalink

A wonderful outreach to Riccarton, Tuesday afternoon.  Roger and I - as usual.  It was windy and cold, but we missed some rain either side of the outreach - thank you Lord!

Roger had a gospel conversation started before he had barely had time to finish setting up his flip chart.  It was a long chat, but a goodie.  He was clicking his heels afterwards!

I had four interesting gospel conversations through the outreach.  I was pacing myself again, but God was faithful and brought along these people who were very keen to chat.

The first was with a young man from Scotland.  He seemed pretty resistant to the idea that God exists, but he was curious about the flip chart, and so I took him through the law and the gospel.  It turns out that the guy he works for is a Christian, and had even had him along to a church event.  This guy was obviously processing the important questions of life before he even came to me.  He left with the tract: “How we know that God exists and why it matters”.

I then had two separate conversations with Catholics.  Both thought they were good people and going to heaven, but the law showed them how good they needed to be - before I showed them the way to heaven: faith in Jesus’ sacrifice for their sin.  With one of them, it was fascinating watching the guy try to avoid the difficult question: “if you were to die today, and be judged by God, by that standard, would you be innocent or guilty?”  Each time I would just listen to his answer, and then repeat the question.  On the third time, he admitted he would be guilty.

The last conversation was with a young man on his way to work.  I didn’t need to convince him to try the good person test, he wanted to do it.  It’s like he knew what it was about and wanted to talk.  And he seemed very open.  He said there would be nothing stopping him from trusting in Jesus' sacrifice to be saved - even after he considered the cost.  So I challenged him to do so, to start reading his Bible, and to get in touch to get connected with a local church.

Wednesday was four seasons, but it didn’t stop the outreach in the city from proceeding.  I ended up parking myself at the southern entrance to Cathedral Square (without my flip chart - too windy).  In spite of the weather, I had a number of good conversations.

The first was with a young, high school aged, couple.  They were not interested in the gospel.  They clearly loved their sin too much.  But they stayed to engage, and they heard the law and the gospel.  He sobered up a little bit, as he realised the logic of what we were discussing - but the cost was way too high (for now anyway).

I then engaged in a difficult conversation with a guy, who knew he was a sinner, had tried to get involved with a church, but didn’t see any change in his life and gave it up.  I tried to share the gospel with him, but he seemed hardened.  But he accepted an “After Life” tract, and I hope it does a better job of explaining than I did.  I hope to see him again to follow up.

The last conversation was with two young Indian guys.  One seemed quite sobered by hearing the law and understood the gospel.  The other understood too, but clearly rejected it - again, after counting the cost.

Tonight (at midnight) the new Star Wars movie will be showing.  Two of us are going to try running an outreach in the two hours leading up to it outside a movie theater.  We have special tracts for this.  God willing many, who wouldn’t have otherwise, will hear the gospel.  I'll write about it in my next log entry.

Sunday 15 December 2019

Posted by Posted 15 December 2019, 5:19 PM by Glen Richards. Permalink

Continuing from my last log entry, after the gospel + abortion outreach on Friday morning, three of us went to open air preach in Cathedral Square at lunch time.

Marty preached first and attracted an early heckler who was ignored.  But soon after, an old lady walked through and stopped to listen to the gospel.  She was bold, and decided to go to the preachers defense!  She took on the heckler (see photo) who soon left!  Marty was left to preach in peace.  :)

In the afternoon, another team of three were in Cashel Mall (Roger instead of Marty).  I had a stand out conversation with a young man who was with his parents (I suppose) - he was keen to try the flip chart, but his parents couldn’t stop.  The mum just smiled, and said for me to take him through it…  It turns out he had a church background, but he wasn’t right with God.  He became very uncomfortable when we were talking about hell (I was too when I was his age before I was saved).  And so this conversation was a wake up call for him.  And then he revealed that he was recovering from cancer!  No wonder his Mum wanted him to talk to me - his parents are no doubt praying for his salvation.  He understood the gospel.

I was exhausted and on my own for the Friday evening outreach, but God helped me through and I ended up having wonderful gospel opportunities, three in particular: two of which were follow ups.

One was with a young man struggling with addiction.  I was glad to hear he had been in rehab, but then sad to hear that he had just left.  He desperately needs the gospel and so I did my best to continue to share it with him.  I will continue to pray for him.

The last was with two catholic high school students who I shared the gospel with about four months ago.  It was a long follow up, where I continued to reinforce the gospel message they had heard.  They have contact cards for my church.

On Sunday a team of four were at the corner of Cashel & Colombo for a couple of hours.  But before I arrived, just after leaving my car, I had a wonderful opportunity to share the gospel with 3 guys.  They all got my checking question (so what do you have to do to go to heaven?) correct on the first try.  They each said part of the answer: “trust”, “Jesus”, “paid the fine for my sin” - I was impressed.

After the outreach had started, I had a wonderful conversation with two young ladies.  It turns out one of them was getting baptised tonight!  And she had a good understanding of the gospel, and helped me share it with her friend, who isn’t a Christian but didn’t want to go to hell.  She understood the gospel and took a follow up “After Life” tract.  She is going to church tonight to witness her friends baptism.  Oh that she understands and accepts the gospel message too!

Later I was able to catch up with yet another old workmate - his wife took tracts.  And then a conversation with a German tourist who appreciated the conversation and “found it really interesting”.

Well it’s been a really long week (for some reason) - really looking forward to a rest tomorrow!  Thank you Jesus :)

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