During our Summer Witnessing Campaigns we set up a hotline to handle the many phone calls we get during this time of intense evangelism. It can get very steamy on our hotline. Some of the calls are less than polite and outside the scope of decent conversation. They come from people who consider an open phone line an invitation to vent their anger, frustration and confusion. Yet sometimes even these calls end with a calm, conversation, while others culminate in an angry click of the receiver.
Yet some calls are from people who are truly seeking and reaching out to know more about the Messiah. Two such calls came within two weeks of each other. Each conversation ended with the campaigner who answered the phone praying with the caller to receive Yeshua into his life.
It was my opportunity to follow up on David and Adam, qualify their decisions and see how I could help them. Knowing that they both were people who had contacted us by phone, I suspected that they might not be sincere, but I knew I must not approach them in a negative fashion.
I was delighted to find that each of these Jewish men really had made a sincere and deliberate decision that was not a spur-of-the-moment choice. Each had carefully considered the gospel message before praying with Marcie, our faithful campaigner.
David, born in another country, had lived in the U.S. (Brooklyn) most of his life. For years he had considered the gospel message, but with a distant coolness. Now his life was in crisis and he put out a call of desperation to the Lord. One day in the midst of his pain, he received a Jews for Jesus broadside from one of our campaigners. For his own reasons, he didn’t stop to talk. Instead, he called us on the hotline and we were able to draw him into meaningful conversation about eternal issues.
A few days after David’s phone decision, I was able to meet with him at his home and verify that he had come into a sincere relationship with Jesus. We began a series of discipleship studies together. His sincerity is intact and he appears to want to learn and grow in the Lord. He knows that his commitment to Jesus will not solve all of his troubles, but it will give him peace in the midst of turmoil.
The other man, Adam, called our office for reasons that were completely different from David’s. His life was going very well and he was looking for a place to express his Jewish heritage, his concern for Jesus and his wife’s spiritual roots.
When Adam called he was just looking for a meeting to attend and didn’t expect personal spiritual guidance, but when someone calls on the hotline, we want to tell them more than just what they are asking. After all, we are not an information service, but an evangelistic ministry.
About a week after Adam prayed with our hotline operator, I visited him in his home. He, too, impressed me as someone who had earnestly committed his life to Jesus. He was eager to begin personal discipleship studies. Yes, he did also find the meeting he was seeking at a local messianic congregation.
In the words of a telephone carrier’s advertisement, It pays to be well connected.”