Sometimes a vibrant newcomer really can lift the spirits of us veteran missionaries. That’s what happened to me last summer. Although it was my third Jews for Jesus Summer Witnessing Campaign, it was the most exciting one I have experienced. The Holy Spirit was surely moving among open hearts, and more than 500 people prayed with us to receive Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior.
I firmly believe that God is sovereign. We cannot make people believe, no matter how excited we are about him or how much evangelism we do, but God does bless our efforts and our excitement about him to draw others to himself. I thank him for using our efforts last summer, and for each campaigner.
One campaigner in particular was blessed with two special gifts that God used to strengthen all of us and make us more effective evangelists. Throughout the five long weeks in New York , Steve was a continual encouragement to the campaigners. He also was gifted in identifying people who were ready to pray to receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior. On his first sortie (tract distributing expedition) during our training period in Chicago he led seven people to Yeshua! That was no fluke. Throughout the Summer Campaign Steve consistently exhibited a God-given talent for communicating the gospel and leading others in prayer to receive God’s forgiveness through Messiah Yeshua.
Some people with a special talent might want to keep it to themselves, or have a tendency to become puffed up with pride, but not Steve. He was humble as could be. He never looked for credit or praise, but always gave glory to the Lord for his successes. Besides leading 127 people to Yeshua during the Campaign, Steve inspired the rest of us. He prayed regularly for other campaigners to be blessed with the opportunity to lead someone to the Lord. He always greeted his fellow campaigners with a smile and a word of encouragement. Through Steve’s example we all became more confident in our own abilities to proclaim the gospel and to win souls for the Messiah. We began to have a greater expectation of what the Lord could do through us. Our faith became stronger, and the Holy Spirit used us in more ways to lead more people to saving faith in Yeshua. I praise and thank the Lord for the special blessing Steve was to all of us last summer.
Since then Steve applied and was accepted to come on staff with Jews for Jesus. He is now in the process of raising support to serve as a full-time associate missionary. In the meantime he is looking forward to being on Campaign again this summer. I am excited for Steve and for our ministry. I know that Steve will be an inspiration wherever he serves. As much as Steve is a gifted evangelist, I believed the greater blessing was the way he helped us all to fulfill the exhortation of the Apostle Paul who wrote, "Wherefore, comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do" (l Thessalonians 5:11).