Bits from the Branches
From the CIS:
In Dnepropetrovsk, Sergei Koulakov reports, I last met with Dmitry G. in January, 1999. He believed in Jesus and wanted God to change his life, but was afraid to repent. Soon after, he was jailed on drug charges. Dmitry is now out of prison and I recently met with him. It seems he was so fearful that he would continue to sin after repenting that he considered it better to wait and turn to God when he felt strong enough to follow through. [Many people understand they need to repent, but somehow feel that they must be “good enough” to make it real.] This time, however, Dmitry trusted God and prayed the prayer of repentance. Please pray that God would strengthen Dmitry’s faith and set him free from drug addiction. Please pray also for his health, as he is ill with tuberculosis.”
From Kharkov, Misha Vayshengolts reports, “Anatoly L. was full of anxiety when we met. ‘I don’t know exactly how,’ he said, ‘but in the synagogue, they found out that I receive literature from Jews for Jesus. They told me, “Choose-either us, or them.”‘ Anatoly has been receiving food from a Jewish organization and was fearful that he would no longer receive their aid. Even so, Anatoly had been reading the New Testament, and was starting to see that Jesus was his Savior. I asked him, ‘Will you choose to depend upon God, who offers you eternal life, or will you walk away from the Messiah because you fear what the rabbis can take away from you?’ Anatoly understood the choice and repented. Please pray for his steadfastness in following Jesus and for God’s protection.”
Eliyah Gould reports from Johannesburg, “Three years ago a woman named Fran called our office. She was Jewish and about to marry a man of nominal Christian background. Jews for Jesus sounded to her like a good option. I explained that I wasn’t able to marry people who don’t actually believe in Jesus, and thus I had the opportunity to share the gospel. Fran seemed intrigued and said she would be willing to talk, but subsequent calls did not get us anywhere. Imagine my surprise when Fran called the office recently, wanting to meet. Her sisterin- law had been sharing with her about Jesus. Once again, Fran wondered if perhaps He might be the answer. Praise God, a few weeks later Fran came to know her Messiah, and the Lord is already doing mighty things in her family’s life.”
The Liberated Wailing Wall
Lisha Levinson reports, “Within five minutes of our sortie (tract passing expedition) on a busy street corner, a man made his way toward me. ‘So tell me about this Jesus,’ he said.
His face was battered, with multiple stitches protruding from his wounds. He told me that he was a Druid (witch) and the president of the local chapter of the Hell’s Angels Bikers Association. Stunned, I told him about Jesus and when I finished, he asked to receive the Lord as his Savior. As he walked away, I asked the Lord to confirm what had just happened because I had doubts.
“The following week as I gave my story at one of our church meetings, I mentioned the incident. A man approached me after the service and asked, ‘What’s this guy’s name?’ When I told him he said, ‘Yep, I know him, he was the president of the Hell’s Angels Bikers Association in this town.’ Praise God for so graciously answering my prayer! And more important, please pray for Bill, that his repentance was sincere, that God will deliver him from evil, establish his faith and make him a shining story.”
Holly Meyer reports from Fort Lauderdale, “I have been in touch with Naomi since last winter. She was always open to talking about Jesus on the telephone, but would never commit to meeting in person. However, when her daughter, Esther, was visiting from New Jersey, the three of us met together. At the end of our meeting I asked Esther, ‘Is there any good reason why you cannot accept the Messiah now?’ Esther replied, ‘No,’ and repeated a simple prayer to receive Yeshua. When we finished I realized that Naomi, too, had repeated the prayer. Won’t you please pray for mother and daughter to grow in faith? Also, pray that Esther would welcome contact from our New York branch as our staff there seek to disciple her.”