Today we started “Answers Missions,” an outreach initiative of Answers in Genesis–Australia and New Zealand. Our goal in this ministry is to take the gospel to people wherever they are located. Our outreach today focused on reaching out to the Brisbane City Centre with our Free Bible and Literature table.
I arrived in King George Square at 1 p.m. While I was setting up the table, a Christian from a local church stopped to chat. He wanted to encourage us in our work, and said he’d be praying for us. Throughout the day we met many Christians who were very excited to see AiG out on the streets, giving answers to the questions the world is asking.
Within minutes of the table being set up, a lady from a local business came over to ask if she could have a Bible. We gladly gave her a copy, and she went away with the Word of God. (This was the first of 11 Bibles that we would distribute to interested people this afternoon.)
Not long after, I was joined by the Operation 513 team who regularly witness in this area. It is always encouraging to work with brethren from different groups and churches. As the day went on, the Operation 513 team had numerous gospel conversations and many people were taking tracts.
I had several good gospel conversations, though the first one started off with some hostility. I approached a man to offer him a tract. He told me in not-too-polite language where I could deposit that tract, and that he wasn't interested in talking about God (but in very colourful words).
I said, “That’s fine. So how have you been anyway?”
The man looked stunned and began to tell me his story. He had been homeless for seven years, and had seen many of his mates die. A couple of years ago he managed to get off the streets and into his own home; now, he is trying to help the homeless of Brisbane. For about 20 minutes he told me his story, and I asked questions about what it was like to live on the streets and what could be done to help the homeless. As we chatted, he softened to the point where he offered me one of his cigarettes (which I declined).
Throughout our conversation, I was able to weave gospel truths into our discussion. By the end of it, the man swore, but then quickly apologised to me, and said, “Sorry, Lord.”
Please pray the Lord Jesus would rescue this man.
Toward the end of the day, I had another standout conversation, this time with a young lady. She had stopped at our literature table and wanted to know why we would give items away for free. We chatted for a while, and she spoke about how she has been seeking the truth and wanting to know about God. She gladly took a Bible and also some gospel material. Before she left, I opened her Bible and read to her Isaiah 55:6–7:
Seek the Lord while he may be found;
call upon him while he is near;
let the wicked forsake his way,
and the unrighteous man his thoughts;
let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him,
and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
After reading these verses to her, I pointed out God’s promise that if she seeks him and turns from her sin, then God will show compassion on her and rescue her. Before I could say anymore, the young lady kept reading.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.(Isaiah 55:8–9)
As she finished those verses she said, “Wow! That’s great!”
Please pray the Father would draw this young lady to the Son.
Throughout the day we distributed gospel and apologetics material to atheists, agnostics, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, and Sikhs. People seemed very open to taking gospel material, and several times we had to restock our table.
As I was packing up for the day, we experienced one truly heart-breaking moment. A group of school students aged around 12 were reading a tract out loud. As they read they began to laugh and mock, while they boldly declared, “Yeah! Woohoo! We are going to Hell!”
May God show mercy to them. May the Lord Jesus save them!
Please pray for all those we spoke to today, and also keep us in your prayers as we seek to advance the gospel to all people and to answer the questions they have.