Bits from the Branches
Every Knock Is a Boost!
In Dallas, part-time worker Lyn Bond received a letter from an angry woman named Jane who wrote,
I can manage to forgive you for your audacity, but I leave it to my God to forgive you for breaking two of the Ten Commandments we real Jews revere. Re-read them and see the injunctions about having any other god and about making images. May God forgive you.
Branch leader Alan Bond suggested they post the note on the office bulletin board as a reminder to pray for Jane. Lyn later conducted an in-office visit with a Jewish woman named Phyllis. Phyllis saw the note and asked what Jane could have meant, since Jews for Jesus don’t have any images of God. That led into a great study of Jesus’ deity from the Gospel of John. Please continue to pray for Phyllis. She is running into Christians everywhere!
Having a Ball at the Bowl
In Los Angeles, missionary David Brickner was handing out tracts at the Hollywood Bowl. A nearby group of landsmen (fellow Jews) seemed to be ignoring him until one woman handed him a card and said, My husband wants you to have this. You gave us yours (a gospel tract), so you can have his.” The card offered the services of “Gary Gould” (not his real name) a “Before Need Representative” of a well-known mortuary. It included his address and home phone number.
David approached the group and inquired, “So which one is Gary?” A middle-aged man raised his hand, and David had the attention of the entire group! He asked, “So, do you want to sell me a plot or do you want me to plotz?” (Yiddish vernacular for “drop dead”)
Gary laughed, “First let me sell, then you can plotz whenever you want.”
“But I live in San Francisco,” David told him.
“That’s okay,” he said. “We will wrap and ship anywhere.”
“How about if I ship you some information about Jesus?” David suggested.
“Sure, send whatever you like,” Gary replied.
It took real courage (and ingenuity) for Gary to interact with a missionary in front of his friends. We don’t know if Gary is genuinely interested, but pray that he will be open to Yeshua.
The Russian Front . . . in Florida
Fort Lauderdale is the new home of Marina D., who came to the Lord through the ministry of Jews for Jesus in the former Soviet Union. There is a sizeable Russian community near Fort Lauderdale, and the pastor of a local church in that community has a real love for our people. (He has baptized ten new Jewish believers so far this year!) He is allowing Jews for Jesus to use classrooms at his church so that Marina can start an “English as a Second Language” (ESL) class. So far, about 25 Russian Jewish families are interested. They all live in an apartment complex near the church. Marina’s job experience in Russia was teaching ESL at college level! Branch leader Steve Cohen requests, “Please pray for our Russian outreach here in Florida.”
Surprised in South Africa…
In Johannesburg, Lawrence Hirsch was surprised to receive a call at home from a Jewish man, Peter A. The two had not been in contact with one another for a year-and-a-half. After Peter canceled a visit for the third time, Lawrence had set him aside as “inactive.”
Peter called to say he had gone to church and was so moved by God that he was ready to give his life to Jesus. Lawrence visited him and had the nachas (joy mixed with pride) of leading him in a prayer of faith and commitment. God has no inactive files!
Jews for Jesus Shop Not Bombed!
In London, after terrorists blew up a shop on Finchley Road, several people phoned to ask if it had been our bookshop. In fact, the explosion took place five miles away from our strategic location in Swiss Cottage. The large Jews for Jesus sign makes the shop visible to all who drive along the busy street. (Like all recognizably Jewish locations, we now have regular police surveillance!)
Plenty of visitors are dropping in—some out of curiosity, others with a genuine spiritual hunger. All receive a warm welcome, and many hear a personal story and witness.
One such person was Stefano C., a Jewish student from Italy. He had always “believed something about Jesus” but had not yet asked Him to be his Lord. Our London staff had the joy of praying with Stefano as he came to faith in Christ. Please pray that as Stefano returns to Italy, he will come in contact with other believers who will encourage him in his faith.
More “Shop Talk”
In Berkeley, California, a Jewish believer named Cyril came into our bookstore. He talked to Sharri, our part-time worker, for a few minutes then informed her that his (unbelieving) rabbi friend was standing outside. Sharri invited the rabbi in, and they talked for a while. Cyril bought a couple of messianic music tapes, and the two left.
The following Tuesday, Cyril returned with his unbelieving brother. As Sharri spoke with the brother, it was obvious that he understood the gospel. When she asked if he would trust in Jesus as his Savior, he was ready to repent. Now Cyril and Patrick are brothers in the Lord!