Bits from the Branches
Lyn Bond says, I received the following message on my answering machine: ‘Hello, this is Joyce, trying to call a nurse named Ann; please call me back. If you are not Ann please call me and let me know that I have the wrong number.’
“I called Joyce and said, ‘I am not a nurse, but I am a minister and I would like to pray for you,’ which she gladly accepted. I ended my prayer ‘in Jesus’ name.’ Joyce thanked me for the prayer, but added that she is Jewish and does not believe in Jesus. I replied with a smile I’m sure she could hear in my voice, ‘I’m Jewish too, and I believe that Jesus is our Messiah.’ Later, I used the reverse directory to write Joyce a letter, which began: ‘It is no accident that you called me. . . .’ I told her that I hoped she was seeking God and would contemplate whether or not Jesus is the promised Jewish Messiah. I mentioned that I was going out of town and that I would call Joyce back as soon as I returned.
“Several days later, I was packing to leave when the phone rang. It was Joyce! She was touched by the letter and by the literature I sent, and asked me to call when I got back. When I did, she wasn’t feeling well enough to get together, but asked me to call back in a few days to set up an appointment with her to read the Bible. She also asked me to pray for her sister’s health. Please pray for my continued ministry to Joyce and that God will bring her to faith.”
Teresa Sischy reports, “Recently at a local church where I was speaking I met a man, Mike, who had converted to Judaism many years ago, but later recommitted his life to Jesus. He introduced me to his wife, Marissa, who is Jewish and was brought up in a traditional Jewish home. Three weeks before, she had received Jesus as her Messiah and Savior.
“She told me that she believed in Jesus without a shadow of a doubt, but needed assurance that she had done the right thing. We began meeting weekly to pray, read the Bible and rejoice in what the Lord is doing in her life. Her prayer is that the Lord will give her wisdom regarding her two teenagers who are coming to terms with her newfound faith.
“I have also been meeting with a Jewish woman named Laura who has been dating a new Christian. She has been much affected by his faith and that of his Christian parents. She earnestly wants to know if Jesus is the Messiah, but has many real fears and anxieties that make her search for the truth very difficult. Her two teenage daughters attend a Jewish day school and her relationship with her parents is tenuous. She is very worried about how her family would react if she professed faith in Jesus. Please pray for God to give her faith and courage.”
Karol Joseph reports, “In September, three of our staff (myself, Oded Cohen and Karl deSouza) placed scripture cards all around local Hasidic communities to be ‘discovered’ by those going by. We also sent a recorded phone message in Yiddish to some 20,000 plus ultra-Orthodox Jewish homes, inviting them to contact us for more information about Jesus.
“At first, our phones weren’t nearly as busy as when we did this a year ago. One Hasidic woman did call and when I asked if she had received our phone message, she replied, ‘I did, but why don’t you just speak to us in English?’ Then she hung up on me.
“While Yiddish is the mother tongue of Hasidic Jews, we took some time to pray and we decided to do a test run with the message recorded in English. By that night, we’d received 90 responses and had 24 conversations in which we were able to communicate the full gospel, with five people willing to hear more from us. Please pray for one of those contacts, Max, who was interested in receiving the ‘Days of Moshiach’ DVD as well as the New Testament in Yiddish. After he looks at those, perhaps we’ll meet.”