Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Revival in Sidney

I was in Sidney, MT for a week, working with the great men at Fellowship Baptist.  I saw a literal revival being poured out.  Without being there and experiencing the presence of God, you can't begin to grasp it but I will try to put it in words.  So many things happened and there is so much detail that it makes it impossible to cover it all so I will give some highlights.

During the week, I saw God work in such a powerful and providential way that the credit and glory can only go to God because we basically just watched everything happen apart from means.  One of the first bazaar things that I found was that Jordan has a weekly radio program that plays Paul Washer clips and clips of Jordan preaching the gospel.  The odd thing is that this is on the Rock channel.  1000's of lost people in the oil field are listening to Paul Washer preach on the rock channel and then coming to church. 

Unlike the rest of the churches and business in town who will not let the oil field workers park their trucks on their property, Fellowship Baptist not only allows them free parking but gives them free food, showers and they started a boarding house for the workers in the church and they use the money to send missionaries like me to the ends of the earth.  God is using this ministry to save many souls.

This week I shared the gospel in Spanish with many Mexicans that are flooding the oil field.  One night a guy named Frank, who can speak Spanish, gathered up a whole bunch of these men, some of which he lets live at his house, so that we could share the gospel with them.  Languages and bad translations were flying everywhere as we got into deep discussions about the things of God for a long time.  Conviction was very heavy on one Catholic.  Fellowship is now starting a Spanish bible study on Thursdays and God will fill it up. 

We travelled many miles, which is routine for Jordan, across Montana and North Dakota to proclaim the gospel.  We went to the Mandaree Indian reservation to proclaim Christ.  I did a magic trick for a kid and told him to gather his friends, which he did and in a short time we had a small crowd.  I shared the gospel with them, which is something they never even heard before in their lives.  I had to start at the beginning with these kids because it was all foreign to them.

I saw people radically stop their entire lives and pursue after Christ with everything.  One guy who was struggling with his girl friend and falling into the wrong things with her, stopped the relationship and radically changed his whole life to pursue God.  Another guy named Daniel was burdened so much by what we had seen with all of the Mexicans that he signed up for Language school in Costa Rica for the January trimester for the purpose of learning Spanish so he can come back and start a full Spanish ministry at Fellowship.  Another girl in the church may be doing the same thing.

I saw a biblical church be built in a week.  Fellowship has been trying to start a church in Watford City, ND to reach oil field workers.  God brought in 5 families from around the country by His providence that are already discipled, reformed, like-minded on everything and solid out fro Christ.  The church will have almost 30 people in it to start and they are all so solid and want to serve and reach the oil field for Christ.  On night we met another man named Paul at a restaurant in Watford.  We were all eating and saw that his teenage girl was reading a bible so I went over to them and we started talking and soon found this was a work of God that He was revealing to us.  Paul told us about another family that was moving up here to help with a project he was working on and they also were like minded and were coming to minister to the the oil field.  All of these families that were independently brought to Watford from around the country for the purpose of serving Christ were brought together in God's time to start a biblical church.  The presence of God upon us that night in Watford was so powerful that we thought God would save everyone in the town that night.  Brandon almost stood up on a chair in the restaurant and preached the gospel.  We wanted to just run to people and proclaim the gospel to them because God was moving so powerfully.  We did grab an oil field worker in a gas station and shared the gospel with him as the whole store listened.  He almost ran out of there without hearing the good news.  I ran after him to tell him as Brandon was yelling across the store that there was good news (We only took him through the law at this point).  Everyone may have thought we were crazy but God was there and we were confident that He would save men that night.  This may sound crazy and I'm not at all charismatic but the presence of God was felt so powerfully this night that nothing in the world mattered but the Christ. 

I also saw a great man transformed and get direction in a very clear way.  This guy has a very successful trucking company and he just bought his dream ranch and although he was a Christian and already serving Christ, he was becoming very discontent with his business and felt if he did not doing something for God full time, he would die.  He got such a passion for missions during the week that he made up his mind to go.  But first God revealed to him what to do with His business.  He is giving it to God.  He is going to build up his business and turn his ranch into a man camp for the oil field or use it in same was to provide income and then give all his money from his business to advance the kingdom of Christ.  He wants to start sending missionaries to the ends of the earth single-handedly and then get his pilot's licence and then go to the mission field, possible Peru, and fly around the country proclaiming Christ.  He is already going to learn Spanish. 

This is only something that, until now, I have read about.  What is God doing?  What does the future hold for Sidney, Watford, and Peru?  What is God doing among the oil field workers?  I sit in awe and amazement as God advances His Kingdom and allows us to watch it happen.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Apostle Paul's rejection letter from the Foreign Mission Board

This is a letter that could have been written to the Apostle Paul had he applied for missionary service under some of today’s modern missionary boards:

Rev. Saul (Apostle) Paul
Independent Missionary
Corinth, Greece

Dear Mr. Paul:

We recently received an application from you for service under our Board. It is our policy to be as frank and open-minded as possible with all of our applicants. We have made an exhaustive survey of your case. To be plain, we are surprised that you have been able to “pass” as a bona fide missionary. We are told that you are afflicted with a severe eye trouble. This is certain to be an insuperable handicap to an effective ministry. We require 20–20 vision.

Do you think it seemly for a missionary to do part-time secular work? We heard that you are making tents on the side. In a letter to the Church at Philippi you admitted that they were the only church supporting you. We wonder why?

Is it true that you have a jail record? Certain brethren report that you did two years’ time at Caesarea, and were imprisoned at Rome.

You made so much trouble for the businessmen at Ephesus that they refer to you as “the man who turned the world upside down.” Sensationalism has no place in missions! We also deplore the lurid over-the-wall episode at Damascus. We are appalled at your obvious lack of conciliatory behavior. Diplomatic men are not stoned and dragged out of the city gate, or assaulted by furious mobs. Have you ever suspected that gentler words might gain you more friends? I enclose a copy of Dalius Carnagus’ book, “How to Win Jews and Influence Greeks.”

In one of your letters you refer to yourself as Paul the Aged. Our new mission policies do not anticipate a surplus of elderly recipients. We understand, too, that you are given to fantasies and dreams. At Troas, you saw, “A man of Macedonia” and at another time you were “caught up into the third heaven” and even claimed that “the Lord stood by” you. We reckon that more realistic and practical minds are needed in the task of world evangelism.

You have written many letters to churches where you have formerly been pastor. In one of these letters, you accused a church member of living with his father’s wife, and you caused the whole church to feel badly and the poor fellow was expelled.

Your ministry has been far too flighty to be successful. First Asia Minor, then Macedonia, then Greece, then Italy, and now you are talking about a wild-goose chase to Spain. Concentration is more important than dissipation of one’s powers. You cannot win the whole world by yourself! You are just one little Paul. In a recent sermon you said, “God forbid that I should glory in anything save the Cross of Christ.” It seems to us that you also ought to glory in our heritage, our denominational program, the unified budget.

Your sermons are much too long for the time. At one place you talked until after midnight and a young man was so sleepy that he fell out of the window and broke his neck. Nobody is saved after the first 20 minutes. “Stand up, speak up, and shut up,” is our advice.

Dr. Luke reports that you are a thin little man, bald, frequently sick, and always so agitated over your churches that you sleep very poorly. He reports that you pad around the house, praying half the night. A healthy mind in a robust body is our ideal for all applicants. A good night’s sleep will give you zest and zip so that you wake up full of zing!

You wrote recently to Timothy that you had “fought a good fight.” Fighting is hardly a recommendation for a missionary. No fight is a good fight. Jesus came not to bring a sword, but peace. You boast that “I fought with wild beasts of Ephesus.” What on earth do you mean?

It hurts me to tell you this, brother Paul, but in all of the 25 years of my experience, I have never met a man so opposite to the requirements of the FMB. If we accepted you, we would break every rule of modern missionary practice.

Most Sincerely yours,
J. Flavius Fluffyhead, Sec.
Internation Mission Board

JFF: hmh
Dr. Hendon M. Harris

Friday, July 15, 2011

Interview with Wehrner

This is our Peruvian partner, Wehrner, who we will, by God's grace, start the church in Cusco.  In this video, Brad White from Heart Cry is interviewing Wehrner at his church about a few recent converts that God had showed them.

Missionary Wehrner G. tells two stories of salvation from HeartCry Missionary Society on Vimeo.

Friday, July 8, 2011

We have our house in Costa Rica

Again, so much has been happening so I thought that I would throw out a quick update.  Time is traveling at warp speed as we approach the date our plane leaves.  We have sold or gave away almost everything we own now and it is outstanding.  I love having nothing, it is very freeing.  We have our house in Costa Rica which is the picture above.  We are very happy with it and it was cheaper than we budgeted so we should save some money that way.  It is only 10 minutes from our good friends and partners in the mission field, the Killillays. 

I worked my last day at Holter dam on July 5th.  We thank God for the wonderful season in our life at Holter.  It was a great job with great people to work with not to mention one of the best locations to live.  We sure enjoyed our time in this area and have made many good friends that we will miss. 

I now am working for God full time.  This is the greatest joy and privilege in my life.  I treat each day as a work day and I spend the day doing the work of the ministry.  When I am home this month, I have been working at the church a full day, studying, working on sermons, reading, talking to people in the community and already building new relationships, working on future Peruvian church documents, corresponding with our Peruvian partners, translating documents into Spanish, and learning Spanish.  This is the greatest job in my life and I would rather be the poorest man on earth and do this than be rich and do anything else.  What a glorious privilege that God has given me.  I plan on continuing this work while we are still here and developing a similar regiment in Costa Rica.  I'm loving every minute of it and am over-joyed in Christ.

We also had a good night of sharing the gospel in Helena.  Had some great conversations and ran into a kid that I witnessed to a year ago.  He remembered exactly who I was and we had a great, long talk about the seriousness of the state of his soul and sinning against a Holy God.  I absolutely love illustrating the picture of the Wrath of God being poured out on rebellious sinners.  I was once the same way.  Praise God for His mighty grace and mercy He shows to His sheep.