Hello Project Ezra! It’s a little late, but our event recap for Mission Good Friday 2012 is below. It was a great event, with members from all of the country and the world participating. The reports below are just a sampling. There were many others (see the map below). If we didn’t post yours, don’t feel bad. There simply is not enough room for all of them, and that’s a great problem to have! Please keep sending in your testimonies, pictures, and videos. We love seeing them, and they are a huge encouragement to me and others.
We read Matthew chapters 26, 27, and 28 in Zamora Spain, on a cold rainy day! In a city acustomed to processions of statues, we were really a novelty. What a testimony!!!
An amazing testimony indeed! His wife Diane was excited too.
What a blessing! We chose to go out at 12 noon and although it rained, it didn't pour. Hundreds were on the street and heard parts of the Gospel read, and preached. We read the three chapters of Matthew twice. Someone lobbed a perfectly good tennis ball at me from a third story window which landed in the middle of the walking street where a dog made off with it : ) A few asked questions and many received an Easter message tract "He did this especially for you" in Spanish. Hoping we can go out again on Easter Sunday morning. God bless you as you share in your cities and towns!
Too bad about the tennis ball, but this type of thing is sadly not unusual when we step out to share the gospel. At least the dog was happy. But the gospel and the glory of God is worth any amount of persecution, whether something very small like a thrown tennis ball, or the life and death situations many of our brothers and sisters around the world face on a daily basis.
Many of our participants, such as Aaron Womack from Woodstock Virginia, asked for prayer, for themselves or for people they spoke with. Aaron said:
Friends, please pray for Tony (the man in front of me) and his wife Marsha (the woman next to him in the picture). While I was preaching out of this week’s text, he came up and stood right in front of me. After some time he raised his hand and said he had a question, which began an amazing back and forth for about an hour.
The man told me that he would have punched most people in the face for telling him some of the things I told him that night, but he shook my hand and thanked me for being honest with him. He told me that the gospel has never made sense to him until this night. He said that for the first time in his life, he understood it. And he told me that he could tell that I truly cared about him and that although he just met me, he trusted me that what I was telling him was the truth. It was a divine appointment without question.
I prayed over him and his wife that God would open Tony's eyes and break his heart… that he would lead Tony to true and saving repentance and faith. His wife was in tears as he hugged me and thanked me for being so honest with him and told me that he'd call me. I thanked them for taking the time to talk and told him to call me. I pray he does. Please pray for Tony! And please know that I am not boasting in anything at all here. I'm just so amazed at what I saw our great God do that night and thought that it may serve to encourage you all to never quit! I praise our God for his faithfulness! Soli Deo Gloria!and go talk to this man and his wife in private, so I took off my mic and passed it off to one of the other evangelists and went to talk with them
(Aaron’s comments were edited due to their length. The full report can be seen here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/103701805742/?notif_t=group_r2j)
Please do pray for Tony.
No matter where you live, there is likely a good place somewhere close to you that would be great for public scripture reading, whether a city bus stop downtown, like Todd and Jodi Arnold and their son Matt,
Or in a local park, like Ryan Woodhouse, seen here facing a walkway on the banks of the Mississippi River.
Brother Tim Rector in Ontario, Canada, shares that:
A Romanian brother, Vasile, and I went to Victoria Park in downtown Kitchener to read Matthew 26-28. Vasile didn't want to read because he cannot read English too well. But as I was getting tired half way through 27 a group of about 10-12 Christian students from a Baptist Bible School approached. I asked them who like to read, and two of them got on the step and read. They were very nervous, but God's word was read! Afterward I preached for about 45 minutes, and many adults and children listened. Someone phoned the police, and park security arrived just as we were finishing. The one security officer asked God to bless us, and gave us his phone number if anyone is ever threatening us. Many people heard that Jesus Christ, God as man, lived a perfect life, died for their sin, became the horror of sin, rose from the dead, ascended to heaven to sit at the right hand of the Father. A boy named Nat came to confront me during the preaching, to say that God forgives sin if we believe in Him. Because of Nat's confrontation many people were able to hear the difference between repentance and false faith. Many people heard that repentance is a turning from their sin and a trusting in Christ instead. Many people heard that Jesus Christ makes us a new creation when He saves us. Many people heard about the righteousness of Christ and wretched sinfulness of man. Praise God!
It is amazing how God when we step out in faith, God will give us the support and tools we need to accomplish His will. Sometimes that means the courage to continue alone, and sometimes that means bringing an audience, who may also need to be encouraged to stand for their faith.
Willem Pretorius checked in from Auckland, New Zeland, and said he:
Went to downtown Auckland with a team of New Zealanders to evangelize. It went well. Had 2 conversations, open aired (read Matt 26, 27) and handed out tracts. Only had one guy who very aggressively and loudly swore at me, telling me I was disturbing the peace. Just smiled and told him to have a nice day, which for some reason infuriated him even more :) He was definitely not interested in talking. The team also had good conversations, some OA (open-air), sang hymns and handed out tracts.
It’s great to hear about the gospel being proclaimed overseas, but it many areas it’s possible to participate in international missions right in your own city! Our local team here in San Jose, California, the Norcal Seedsowers, participated in the reading, and one of our members, Judy Leigman (shown in the top picture below), read open-air in English, Spanish, and German. Although we had no German-speaking visitors this time, it has happened in the past. You never know who God will bring, and in an international city like San Jose, the heart of the Silicon Valley, they can be from anywhere.
We were also joined by Apryl, and several other Seedsowers. This was one of Apryl's first open-air readings. She did a fantastic job!
Every one of these people, many of whom are very faithful Project Ezra participants, was once new to public evangelism. Some even got their start through Project Ezra. I’m sure if you take a moment or two, you’ll be able to think of a brother or sister in Christ who you could encourage to take a step of faith, climb onto a box or ladder, and read God’s word in public. Consider forwarding this post to them. It may be the push they need. Or maybe someone sent you this post, praying that you would be the one encouraged. If so, I pray that you will follow our blog at projectezra.blogspot.com, and consider breaking the sound barrier, sharing the gospel in the open air for the first time. Please let us know if you do so we can be in prayer for you. And in the meantime, please be in prayer for us. See you on the streets!
All for His glory,