Recently, I spent six days in the urban streets of Indianapolis,  Indiana starting witnessing conversations with people. In spite of heavy rains, lighting, and tornado warnings, the team of witnesses that i was working with saw over 650 people come to trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

One church that had had three baptisms in ten years had sixteen baptisms in seven days. We saw people give their lives to Jesus and saw them changed for eternity. One man who shared with us about all his problems, his wife was in hospice care, his van was not running, he was out of work. He broke into tears after he had given his life to Jesus. 

Sixteen peopel immediately were connected into the local church. One individual, addicted to herion was ready for a change of life, he also gave his  life to Jesus as Lawerance led him in a sinner’s prayer.  Does a simpel gospel presentation still work today? of course it does. Since 2001, through the urban ministry that God has allowed me to give leadership to I have seen over 17,000 souls make decisions to follow Jesus and be rescued from the flames of hell. 

I have seen declining and dying churches reclaimed for God and complacent and backslidden Christians get on fire for God again. Some for the first time shared their faith with a lost person and saw them come to trust in Jesus. I have seen new churches started in hard areas because of a few faithful witnesses going into high risk areas and reaching hard core lost people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I have seen young men and elderly men cry because they shared how for the first time as a believer, they led somebody to faith in Jesus. I have heard men of all ages share how they were broken becaue they desired to see somebody come to faith in Christ.

One writer who is  promoting  a style  of  evangelism similar to our approach and as the way Jesus witnessed, quoted me in his 2006 publicaton. He put  a negative spin on what I said about the real work for the churches we helped over a weekend of intentional community evangelism.  A great number of people that we have witnessing conversations with have a lot of baggage when they trust Christ. The writer obviously was not with us in the  urban community we were witnessing in. Everyone who chooses to become a follower of Christ is at a different journey. The harder the life a person lives sometimes results in a more intentional pursuit of God. Jesus said that it is easy for a camel to go through a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.  

For example, take Nicodemus, he came to Jesus at night to learn about Him. But we do not read about him again until after the death of Jesus. We read about him when he goes to help take down Jesus body from the cross to be buried.

Then we read about Jesus hard core disciple Peter who was willing to die with Jesus and at the most critical time he rejects Jesus. How do we explain his decision? Peter was a sinner saved by grace. Even in his zeal to follow Jesus his faith was still growing. Following Jesus is a spiritual journey and we are all transitioning at different speeds. I pursued God with a passion after I trusted in Jesus. I know others who it took a while for them to get to where I was spiritually.

January 1, 1984 I trusted in Jesus as my Lord Savior. I immediately was baptized that same night. I know of other individuals who were not as quickly to join the church.  It took them awhile. What is the difference between a new believer who immediately joins the church and those who it takes weeks and sometimes months. Everyone is at a different point in their life.

Why are some Christians more committed than others. Doesn’t everyone get the same amount of  the Holy Spirit? Of  course  we do, but I believe that your personally type also affects how you respond to being a witness. And for a new believer, some people like the apostle Peter, they are ready to jump out of the boat and others are like Nicodemus and are slow to come to a point of laying it all on the line.

The main thing to remember in being a witness is to listen to the Holy Spirit as he leads you in the witness experience. God knows better than you do what to say and who to approach. We do notchange anyone. We cannot convince anyone as my critic said in one of his videos. Convicting and convincing is the work of the Holy Spirit. Our role is to be be tellers or communicators of the Good News about Jesus and leave the rest up ot God.

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