“God, send me anywhere, only go with me. Lay any burden on me, only sustain me. And sever any tie in my heart except the tie that binds my heart to Yours.” - David Livingstone

Monday, June 29, 2015

Preaching in the rain!

(This was written on April 20, 2015 by Dad.)

Would you listen to unpopular Bible truth, standing on a muddy field in cold rain? 
Last evening as our local team set up for the evening meeting in the open air, I watched with concern a distant rain shower to the west.  The breeze was blowing from the northeast which seemed encouraging, but despite the direction of the wind, the rain seemed to be creeping toward our open field. 

When darkness settled on Lusaka, it was impossible to tell which direction the storm was headed.  The topic for the evening we had entitled, “The Topic that Satan Hates”—a lecture on the Bible Sabbath.  For the preceding several nights, I had forewarned the crowd that they might have difficulty attending the Sunday-night lecture, because the devil did not want them to hear what we were going to present that night.  The possibility of getting rained on had passed through my thoughts, and had been reinforced on Friday night when our meeting had to be canceled due to rain.

So it was with much prayer and concern for the weather, that we started the meeting last night.  The evening had already had it challenges as the power went off, and we had to start up the backup generator.  Then during the “Question and Answer” time, the generator ran out of fuel!  Someone had forgotten to refill it from the previous week.  The crowd waited patiently in the darkness for our team to refill and restart the generator.  When the machine roared back into life and the lights came on, the audience let out a cheer.

Some of the listeners.
After the preliminaries and other formalities, we got started into the evening’s study at around 7:00 o’clock.  Hardly five minutes into lecture, suddenly a group of children sitting in front of me jumped up and ran off the field to my left.  Moments later, I realized that they had run over to a second tent that the brethren had pitched on the right side of the staging area.  It was at that point that I guessed it had started raining.

Standing on the covered stage, my translator and I couldn’t feel the sprinkles, but looking out toward the projectors, I could see streaks of reflection as raindrops flashing through the light.  Our local technicians quickly set about to cover the exposed electronics.  The projectors each got their own umbrella, and the PA system was covered with a large plastic tarp.  Power-cord connectors were also covered with plastic bags, as were some of the more exposed speakers. For the next fifteen minutes or so, it continued sprinkling and more of the audience moved into the tents pitched on either side of the staging area.  The tents soon were packed with people, all trying to stay dry, and since the tent sides were open, those inside could see one of the two screens (sheets) set up for our slide projection.

I prayed earnestly while preaching, that God would turn off the water, but as the evening progressed the sprinkles got harder until we were in a light rain shower.  Thankfully it didn’t pour, and as the audience continued to listen, we kept preaching.  For a whole hour, probably 300-400 people stood in the light rain and cold, to listen to the topic of the Bible Sabbath!  The rest had crowed into one of the two large tents.

In reflection, I have thought that rather than praying for God to stop the rain, I should have been praying that God would reward the dedication and commitment of these African brothers and sisters who are willing to stand in cold rain to hear the truth!  If every Christian had the same dedication to the Word of God as these Africans, we would probably all be in the kingdom of heaven!

Again, thank you for your continued prayers and support!

Another update coming soon!

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