I felt God leading us to Raleigh to do a cross walk. My mom (Marcia Rowland) and our sister in Christ, Deborah Reliford, joined me on the walk. We began our walk on Capital Blvd. We started walking from the McDonalds and made our way to a shopping center when a lady pulled up in a van beside us. She just looked at me without saying a word and it appeared as though she had seen a ghost. As we began to talk I soon discovered that she used to be close to God, and that she had strayed from Him. She said that she had a lot of guilt from her past mistakes.
I took as an opportunity to share my own story about how God delivered me from my past guilt. Tears begin to pour from her eyes. She said that she didn't know how to get back to God and she has tried but keeps failing. I explained to her that we can't do anything within ourselves, but we have to rely on Him and He will give us those desires if we ask. Sometimes just admitting to God our weakness is what He wants us to do. The Bible says in James 4:6 - But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”
God gives grace (His strength and favor) to those who humble themselves. All pride and human abilities leave when we realize that God works through our weaknesses.
Pride says, "I can do it myself" while being humble cries, "I need your help God!"
I asked mom and Deborah if they would pray for her. As they prayed, a great joy came over this lady and she began to sing from her heart. She had a beautiful singing voice, and I noticed her countenance started to change. God really blessed this lady, as well as us.
After we prayed three teenagers came up to me and asked what I was doing. I told them I was preaching the gospel, and then I asked them how their relationship was with Jesus. They said "Okay" but they knew they were not doing everything they should be doing. So I told them that we have to come to God by humbling ourselves, and I squatted down and asked them to squat down with me. I told them that we have to humble ourselves by bringing ourselves lower and letting go of our pride and repent of our sins and God would do a work in our lives. They seemed to devour every word. I could tell that they had never heard anything like that before.
We continued our walk down Capital when all of the sudden the lady that we first met in the van comes running after us. She ends up walking with us the rest of the day, singing and praising God along the way. We were not expecting that at all. Praise God for His many blessings!!
I talked to many people about Jesus this day. It always amazes me how people respond to this visual.
I want all our readers to know that I ONLY do this for God's glory. I even have had many opportunities to receive money from people, but I refuse to use this as a money thing! I want to give the Gospel to people free of charge. The scripture says in Matthew 10: 7-8 - And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.
Now I know there is nothing wrong with receiving money from people, because the scripture goes on to say a worker is worthy of his food...
I believe that not taking peoples money in a society driven by money and greed will only help to further the validity of the gospel.
I went back a few days later to Capital Blvd. Two teenagers chased me down for about a quarter of a mile to talk to me and get a picture. Also a great couple pulled up and asked me what I was doing this for. I talked to them for probably thirty or forty minutes about my testimony and what God was doing with the crosswalk. Then the man offered a prayer for me. He asked that God would strengthen me and continue to use me in this way for His glory.
I also talked to four people at the Food Lion. I could tell by the way they talked that they were Christians. I challenged them to go even deeper in their walk with God, and to listen to His Spirit to use them to step out and do something "out of the box" for Him.
Yet another day in Raleigh we went downtown. As I walked through town you could sense that people were caught up in life. I believe that if Jesus himself were to return and walk down some of our streets in America He would just be overlooked.
We have heard the name Jesus so long in our country that it has become just another name to us. That name has lost its power in our lives because of our love for money, the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, and the pride of life. The Bible even says in Matthew 24:36-44 - “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
It will come as a thief to those who aren't interested or those who are caught up with this life. If you are a Christian and you spend most of your time on worldly affairs, then you are missing the mark. It's not just the real bad sins that we think of either that hold us back. It said they were eating, drinking, and getting married. These are just everyday things that we do. These things are not bad in themselves but when they become our God then we have missed the boat.
I talked to two young girls who said that they were saved. As I begin to talk, one of them walked away, but the other one stayed. I asked her if she was sharing her faith with anyone, and talking to God in prayer, and she said "Not like I should." I asked her what her husband would think if she got up in the morning, got dressed, drank her coffee, fixed her hair, and then walked out the door without speaking to him. She said her husband would probably think she was mad at him. I told her this is what we do to God everyday, but we don't think about it because He is not the most important thing in our lives.
Jesus gave His life for us; He left His throne to become a servant for us. The least we can do is acknowledge Him and thank Him, and share what He has done for us. She agreed, and I gave her a practical way she could start honoring God. I told her that first thing in the morning, before she does anything, to get on her knees and thank God for the day and worship Him. Her eyes got real big when I said that. I think it sounded different to her....almost alien!
Praise God for all that He has done and continues to do with Radical Life Outreach Ministries! Thanks to all of you that have supported us and still support us with your prayers and gifts.
To God be all the glory and to Jesus Christ our savior,
To be continued……
I'd like to take a moment to also recognize and thank Freedom Baptist Church of Durham. We were asked to come and speak to them about our ministry on Sunday the 9th. At first I didn't know how we'd take up an entire hour of time, but as Pastor Ronnie Bell told Dean at one point "She's on a roll now".....wow :) It came easy as we just talked about the ways that God is working in our lives and our community.
We were then able to team up and help out a little with their Fall Festival the following Saturday. Ronnie Bell is the new pastor at this church and really just wants to see the Word and Spirit of God grow exponentially in the surrounding community.
Thanks again Ronnie and LuAnn! We can't wait to work together with you again.
I also want to take this time to say a big "Thank You" to everyone who has sent me cards, notes, messages, scriptures, or prayers in the passing of my cousin Melanie. It has been a rough two weeks for me at times, but God is good - ALWAYS - and He has brought me through the worst part. There were moments when I knew I was being spiritually attacked and tormented, but I am just so thankful for my loving, Christ-centered, Spirit-filled husband who came along-side and helped me get back on track at just the right moment.
Until next time....Loving Radically Through Christ,