No place I know has been evangelized, again and again, and yet without the lasting fruit of real discipleship, quite like the country of Haiti. Americans have dumped all kinds of money and effort into Haiti and few of these ministries have done truly lasting work for the kingdom. (There are marvelous exceptions but this generalization is sadly too true!)
Wheaton College Graduate student, Yreille Belizaire (who was the first graduate in our new M. A. program in evangelism),
sends me her prayer letters from Haiti regularly. Today’s email brought a new one, telling of her various with my readers since it brings some perspective, and encouragement, from the world outside of the United States, yet a world so very close to us on the map. It also reveals how this godly woman is using her several gifts of preaching and evangelism to fulfill her calling as a minister of the gospel in making Christ known in a powerful and human way. Yreille (pronounced: "e-ray") wrote:
I wanted to begin this email with a prayer that would perhaps bring us to our knees in contrition, but also challenge us to be about our heavenly Papa’s business. It is a prayer by Mrs. Kay Arthur. " Lord, forgive me for my tolerance of sin, for my sensitive, culturally hardened heart. May I so know Your heart, may I be attuned to You that what breaks Your heart will break mine also. May I weep over sin rather than laugh at it with the world."
1. Last Thursday, a group of believers representing 6 different churches began systematic streetpreaching in an area called Bain Town. This is the community that I grew up in and continue to be involved with. We met at 3:30pm and concluded at 6:30pm. This group is made up of older, seasoned streetpreachers, males and females, some who have been ministering on the streets for over 20 years. We sang, gave our testimonies, and the gospel was heard. Duration this time, others of us were intercepting pedestrians, mainly young men and children passing by. I had the opportunity to share Good News with 3 elementary school kids using the colorful booklet, 2 young men, 1 Haitian male and an adult female. Praise the Lord!!!
2. I also had the opportunity to speak with my barber as he was cutting my hair three weeks ago. I was praying in my heart asking God to let me be alert to the opportunity to turn the conversation to Christ. as he was cutting my hair, Theo told me that he had just accepted a Bible from two Mormon missionaries that came to his shop and he wanted to know what I thought about it. I told him that although there are many Bibles, the one that reveals truth about a relationship with God and His purpose for humanity is the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. There was construction going on in the buidling and the phone kept on ringing, so our conversation did not continue. I will be returning and hopefully God by His Spirit would gave me another opportunity to share more with him. I did tell him that his name had a significant meaning. Thank You, Jesus!
3. Last Thursday morning, I begin inductive Bible study of the book of Habakkuk with a believing wife who wanted to mature in her walk with God through the building of inner character traits. Her life is very difficult, but she is finally understanding that God can’t be manipulated by "naming and claiming" or "tongues" or "loud praying."
4. Early Monday morning, I connected with a female Defense Force Officer who had expressed interest in becoming a student of the Word. We agree to meet weekly and today I will begin the inductive Bible Study, "How To Walk The Walk You Talk". She has expressed her inability to live as Jesus lived and this study from the book of Ephesians will be of great help as we apply truth to our everyday lives.
5. I continue to meet on Tuesday mornings with an older believer to study inductively from the book of I John, "How Do You Know That God Is Your Father?"
6. This Thursday at 3:30pm, the street preaching team from the 6 churches met on the corner of South St. and Augusta St. We prayed, sand, gave our testimonies and again the gospel of Jesus Christ was presented. As we ministered, I noticed a man sitting on his porch listening to us. I went over introduced my self to him and asked his permission to share Good News. He gave me a chair and told me that the night before he was having chest pains and thought he would have died. He said that his family called for an ambulance, but when it came, he was too frightened to go. He said that even now his chest was hurting, so I asked him if I could pray for him. He consented and I did. Afterwards, he listened as I shared about a relationship with God through faith in Christ that leads to the conquering of the fear of death and the free gift of life in Christ. He accepted Jesus, the Christ as Lord and Savior. I went back the following day to check up on him, but did not find him home. I left my contact information and will continue to go after this new lamb. Hallelujah!!
7. Wednesday night around 7pm until 8pm, I joined the evangelism team of Christ Community Church, my new faith community for our first street-meeting. It was held on the park in a community called Jubilee Gardens. We sang, I along with another brother gave our testimonies, the children’s troop danced, and evangelist Bloomfield of Jamaica shared Good News. That night 3 young men gave their hearts to the Lord. I had the opportunity of talking with three others, one was being convicted and he gave his heart to the Lord; the other professed to be a Christian, so I challenged him to live as one and to influence the young men around him to put their trust in God, finally I spoke to the third young man. He listened diligently, but was not willing to make a decision, but was open to Bible Study. Thank You, Jesus!!!
8. Clothes are still being accepted and given in the various Haitian migrant communities and churches throughout the week as well as food items.
9. Monies have come in unexpectedly in two cases for the children of Cape Haiti to be able to attened school at least this school year. To God be praised!!!
Yes, I have prayer requests, but I got sooo excited about what the Lord has been doing that I wanted us just to focus on singing His praises and giving Him thanks. The Lord of the Harvest continues to send His workers into His field. May He be able to count on you in whatever field you have been placed. Harvest for the fields are ripe and continue to ask Him to send workers as well. This is a prayer He will definitely answer.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow each of you all the days of your lives as we dwell in the house of the Lord forever, amen.
Another in His service,
It is my great joy to keep in contact with former students like Yreille. She is wise, full of the Holy Spirit, and a wonderful evangelist. She knows how to pray and I often turn to her to pray for me as well. She often turned our classes at Wheaton
into sanctuaries of the grace of God by her presence and deeply felt comments. It is sisters like Yreille that make me aware of how God uses his people beyond my narrow conceptions of what the Father is doing in the world today. I often felt like I was the real student when she was speaking in my classes.
Check out the Wheaton Graduate School M. A. program in evangelism and leadership if you would some great preparation for using your unique gifts in this area. You can search for the program at the Wheaton College site.