On Saturday, September 8th, I had the privilege of joining with six other members of LifePoint to travel to the South American country of Colombia for a week of evangelistic ministry in the city of Bogotá. Although I had been on a previous mission trip, it had not involved street evangelism and, to be honest, I was a little anxious. But I knew the Lord would be with us and I was eager to see how our group would be used to bring honor and glory to His name during our time there.
The plan was for us to visit a different church each day and to be paired with an interpreter and a member from that church so that we could fan out into the neighborhood. There we would visit local businesses, knock on doors, and stop people on the street to share our personal testimony. We would also use an EvangeCube to tell the story of Jesus and His saving grace. The local church member would then pray with those who accepted the Lord and take pertinent information so the church could later do personal follow up.
On our first day out we were taken to a very poor neighborhood located upon a hillside. The church where we gathered was small, both in physical structure and membership, but large in enthusiasm and spirit. The member assigned to me was a young woman about twenty years old who was extremely shy and, if possible, even more nervous than I was. We began by climbing a huge set of steps up the hill to where the homes we were to visit were located. By the time we reached the top and the area we were to canvas, I was out of breath and barely able to talk. I was just about to ask my companions to let me catch my breath when they knocked on a house door and a woman immediately answered. I can only imagine what she must have thought when she saw us and especially me wheezing and hardly able to speak. Nevertheless, I presented my testimony, used the EvangeCube to tell the story of the Lord, and talked to this woman through our interpreter. To my surprise she accepted the Lord immediately. It was only after we had moved on to the next house that I realized I had been so focused on catching my breath and talking to the woman that I hadn’t even thought about my nervousness. From that moment on I knew that it wasn’t me speaking but the Lord and I was merely His mouthpiece. For the remainder of the trip I had no fears or hesitancy about approaching individuals and sharing the Gospel with them. Our group went on to work with two other churches and a street ministry team and altogether 333 people heard the gospel with a total of 283 professing faith in Jesus Christ!
Among the many highlights of the trip for me were seeing the local church members growing confident and boldly going forth in their neighborhoods to proclaim God’s Word with friends, neighbors, and total strangers. Seeing broken and downtrodden individuals, men and women alike, accepting Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and knowing that no matter how hard their life might now be something better ultimately awaits them. I also learned of one team that met a young man who was taking drugs and upon hearing the Gospel message he immediately gave those drugs up, along with his drug paraphernalia, and entrusted his life to the Lord!
What’s so exciting for me is the knowledge that whether here in Indianapolis, Indiana or in Bogotá, Colombia or wherever, God’s Word is powerful and can change people’s lives. But we must remember that it does require someone to present it. As Romans 10:14-15 says, How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? … As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”