In The Trench

Hot crowd tonight. Wow. That was rough. Big first service, and they were feisty. 79 altogether tonight. I did a quick introduction and kicked it over to St., who decided to teach about sin. Unfortunately for him, he tried to fit about forty minutes of teaching on sin and salvation into ten minutes. Which leads to lots of rough edges, blunt truth, and unanswered questions. Which tonight’s raucous crowd didn’t know when or when not to ask. 

It’s funny how these things happen. I really think what started the problems tonight was one of our leaders shouting out directions about finding St.‘s text when he had just started. Lot of visitors apparently deduced that this was a conversation, not preaching. So at least four times during his message, he was interrupted by random people wanting to contend some point, get him to concede an exception, or crack a joke. Poor guy rode out the storm pretty well, though. People yelling out questions about babies dying is tough for any preaching experience level, but he’s definitely enrolled in Hard Knocks Seminary right now. Finally one of our own leaders was dumb enough to yell out another question. Since it was one of ours, I said loudly that I would handle that question after the study was over. That was about the end of the interruptions. This is where the annoying cultural respect of teachers comes in. They would never treat me like that, but St.‘s not their teacher (in their eyes). So when I got up, I tried to tie up some loose ends and told them all that if they had any questions about either lesson they could meet with me afterwards and I would gladly go over it with them. And then I preached our sixth week about David, about his family getting kidnapped and his return to God from serving the Philistines. All in all, I personally thought it stunk pretty terribly. But two girls got saved tonight, so praise the Lord!  

One of the girls that became a Christian, M., actually has a mother that is a believer and has tried to witness to her for a long time. She’s from clear over on the other side of the country, and since she’s been coming to our Bible study, she’s been reading the Bible for herself. M. told my wife tonight that she’s tried to fight her conviction so hard this past month, but it’s been no use. She said specifically, as many others have told my wife, that when they come to our study that they feel sure that there is a God that they can have a relationship with. M.’s friend, who also comes regularly to our study, asked my wife to show her how she could become a Christian tonight, and M. tagged along and at the last minute said, “I want to become a Christian, too!” Pretty cool. Also in the cool category, two of the girls from the leaders meeting helped my wife deal with these two, and, as is true for any Christian who experiences that joy for the first time, they were pretty excited! One of them remarked how clearly they remember the day they became Christians (same day), June 28. I’m really praying for one or two of our leaders to turn into a rabid evangelist!  

One Comment on “In The Trench”

  1. P. November 23, 2009 at 1:44 am #

    [They would never treat me like that, but St.’s not their teacher (in their eyes).]
    -Does this happen often, I mean is it typical? Is it rude to tell them to not do this, or is that cutting cultural differences?

    [ “I want to become a Christian, too!” ]
    -I hope that her decision was genuine.

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