Saturday, September 1, 2012
Santa Monica: An Afternoon with 22nd Street Ministries
What a great day of evangelism in Santa Monica! In addition to being joined by my regular teammates (Bill, Steven, and David), I was blessed to have my daughter, Marissa, with me. And we were all blessed to have members of the 22nd Street Ministries evangelism team (Al, Gerry, Rick, and Amy) from Bakersfield join us.Check out the pictures from today's evangelism efforts.
Al, Gerry, Rick, and I all open-air preached. What follows is more than three hours of open-air preaching, with a wonderfully encouraging story thrown in for good measure.
Here's my open-air on Third Street Promenade.
The older gentleman with his back to the camera is John. He appeared to be in his late 70's, early 80's. As I was preaching, John walked up to me, looked at my Bible on the podium, and thanked me for preaching. He then stood off to the side and listened until I had finished.
When I finished, John walked up to me with a $10 bill in his hand.
"I want you to have this." He said.
"Sir, that's not necessary. I..."
"I want you to use this to buy more bibles."
"Thank you, sir. I will."
John then shared with me that he was Hungarian. He spent forty years of his life preaching and offering free bibles on a Hungarian radio station. Forty years. It didn't take long for me to do the math and realize that John's ministry could not have been popular within the borders of then Soviet-controlled Hungary. John had used the radio waves to proclaim the gospel, behind the Iron Curtain.
I put my arm around John's shoulder and thank him again for his generosity. He pulled me close, hugged me, and prayed for me.
These kind of moments don't happen every day. In fact, I think most of my open-air brethren would agree that they are rather rare. But when the do happen, when the Lord allows them to happen, you remember them for the rest of your life. I will never forget John.
Here's Al's open-air on Third Street Promenade.
Here's Rick's open-air on Third Street Promenade.
Here's Gerry's open-air on Third Street Promenade.
Here's my open-air on the Santa Monica Pier.
Here's Al's open-air on the Santa Monica Pier.
And here's Rick's open-air on the Santa Monica Pier. It was the last open-air of the day.