Follow-Up from Behold Your God Israel (Upper Galilee)
Rahel Landrum (an Israeli staff member who ordinarily serves with her husband in our Australia branch) reports, In May, during the Tel Aviv Behold Your God campaign, I followed up on Limor, a Jewish contact Tzachi met. Limor is a drug addict who lives on the street, and the only way we could get in touch with her was through her mother. I had a short visit with Limor, sitting with her on the pavement near the central bus station in Tel Aviv, where she usually gets her drugs. I asked if she wanted to be free from drugs and I told her about Yeshua, who has the power to heal her. She said she’d been to rehab centers but nothing worked and she was tired of trying. I offered to put her in touch with believers who could help. I prayed for her and then asked her to pray herself. She did in her own words, asking God to help her.
“When I came back to Israel for the Upper Galilee Campaign, Tzachi told me that he’d been in touch with Limor’s mother. Limor had been in jail for five months, almost as long as I had been away, and was going to be released on the 26th of Oct, when again I would be in Israel. Limor had told her mom that she was willing to go to the rehab run by believers. Her mother, not a believer, was hopeful. Unfortunately, Limor chose not to go through with the rehab program.
“I was left with her mother, heartbroken and crying. I told her that God loves both Limor and her so much that He was willing to sacrifice His Son for them. She thanked us for our efforts and willingness to help her daughter. Please pray for Limor and her mom. I believe this is not the end of the story as God continues to reach out to them both. ‘And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly’ (Romans 5:5-6).”
Also from Rahel, “Take a Romanian Bible with you, you never know when you need it. I was going door to door with Edik in Carmiel. We arrived at a tall apartment building and I saw a woman sitting outside on a bench. I told Edik to go and talk with her, thinking she was Russian. So we asked her if she speaks Russian or Hebrew. She said: ‘Russian, Hebrew, Yiddish, Romanian.’
“I started talking with her in Romanian (Edik was praying silently), and after getting to know her a little, I shared with her Isaiah 53 from the Romanian Bible we brought with us. I explained to her how Yeshua died for our sins and about His power to save and heal us. She agreed no one is without sin. She had been watching programs about Yeshua on the Romanian cable channel and seemed very open to the gospel.
“When I asked her if she wanted to receive Jesus, Surika (nickname for Sarah) said yes. I invited her to pray after me, and began by saying: ‘God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, I know I’m a sinner.’
“‘Wait a minute,’ she interrupted. ‘I’m not a sinner.’
“‘But you just said a couple of moments ago you know we all are sinners’, I said, explaining sin as an attitude of rebellion against God and His rule over our lives. She thought for a second, then said, ‘If all are sinners, I guess that includes me as well. Okay, let’s continue, I know, I’m a sinner…’ After she prayed, she said with tears in her eyes, ‘You came to the right person’ and she gladly received the Romanian Bible from which we were reading.
Also from Rahel: “Again, Edik and I went door to door in Carmiel. We arrived at another tall apartment building and noticed a man standing in the front, smoking a cigarette. This Jewish man, Victor, seemed to be ‘waiting’ to talk with Edik in Russian, so it was my turn to pray silently as they talked. Victor also prayed to accept the Lord. Then we went to the top floors where we met a young couple, Sasha and Rinat. Rinat was more open than Sasha and gave me her contact information. We went down to another floor where we met a large family who didn’t like our activities and they let us know about it very loudly. We said ‘Shalom and good bye’ and continued on.
“The family, including mother, father, two young tall men and two girls followed us, screaming and threatening us: ‘Missionaries, get out of here! We’ll call the police.’ They managed to snatch Edik’s bag full of tracts and books. We both tried to take it back but, in the meantime, one of the young men came behind me, pulled the tracts out of my hand and started furiously tearing them up. The good news is that we managed to retrieve Edik’s bag. But when we got outside the building, I realized that my freshly-received contact information from Rinat, who seemed very open, was gone. I’d been holding it beneath the stack of tracts our opposition had grabbed and torn. We couldn’t go back as the angry family would recognize us. So we waited for the rest of our team, Michael and Ilya, to come and we kept on praying. We told Ilya where we lost the contact and sent him to go and get it. He came back, pulling pieces of the torn tracts, one by one, from his pocket. Finally he pulled out Rinat’s contact card—entire and undamaged. The opposition was able to snatch it from my hand, but not from God’s. Praise the Lord!”
Angelina reports, “I approached a couple on the beach at sunset, handing them a tract. The husband looked at it and said, ‘Can you stop the sun, because I really want to talk to you but I don’t want to miss the sunset! But please sit.’ So I sat down to talk. At one point, the couple asked where I confused my Jewishness with a belief in Christianity, in the Ukraine (where I am from), or in Israel (where I now live).
“I explained that I never confused the two since I’ve always believed in the Jewish God who sent us Jewish prophets, who told of a Jewish Messiah who came, so I believed in Him. The man was shocked into silence for a few moments. I felt that God was working in this couple’s hearts as I watched their attitudes. In fact, they blessed me as I left!”
While phoning, Marta spoke to a woman named Carmiel. Once she introduced herself and said she was from Jews for Jesus, the woman exclaimed, “Oh! Yeshu-Yeshua-Yeshuah!” which was our ad campaign for the outreach (explained in a previous RealTime edition) Carmiel had had seen our stickers and was interested in receiving a Hebrew New Testament, but fearful as she lives in a religious area. She ultimately did give her address, said she believed that Yeshua might be the Messiah and was interested in meeting with Marta. Please pray for Carmiel’s salvation.
Victoria reports,”Eighty-three-year-old Yelena immigrated to Israel 20 years ago and now resides in an old age home. She served and was injured in the Second World War, in which she was seriously injured. She return to Belorussia, got married and bore her two children. A tragedy struck the family when her 16-year-old daughter drowned. Her husband died shortly thereafter.
“Yelena has a good heart, and praises the Lord in every situation. We spoke about sin and salvation from sin through Yeshua. After Yelena prayed the sinner’s prayer, she agreed to start reading the Scriptures and to meditate on them. At the end of our visit Yelena began to confess sins to me that she had never told anyone before, and she prayed that God would forgive her for all her sins.”
Edik reports, “Peter has lived in Israel for many years and has been seeking spiritual truth for a long time. When I spoke with him by phone, he told me that when he saw the ‘Jesus film,’ in the year 2000, he cried. A few years later, he met a group of Adventists who talked to him about Jesus, but he felt they were pressuring him to convert to Christianity.
“Two weeks prior to my calling him, he saw an evangelical preacher on television and prayed with him to receive Yeshua. He then asked God for some kind of a sign that this was real. Shortly thereafter, Misha, one of our campaigners, called and offered him a book about Yeshua. Peter said, ‘No one else could have given me this sign. It had to be from God.’ It was encouraging to see how God had used us to confirm this man’s new faith.
Yarden reports, “I spoke with an elderly lady named Anat. When I asked her what she thought of Yeshua, she unfolded a story that began in 1973, when she met a pastor in the Galilee region who shared the gospel with her. She explained that she was stubborn and did not want to listen. She even invited this pastor and a rabbi to debate one another, and she observed that of the two, the pastor’s answers were far more logical and Bible based. The pastor invited her to his congregation, and she began to attend. She still, however, did not want to surrender to this truth and follow Yeshua.
“Later in her life, Anat’s mother was diagnosed with cancer. Two days before her mother’s death, Anat was crying and sensed the presence of Yeshua in the room with her. She felt that He was supporting and helping her. What surprised her was that her mother asked for the pastor to come to visit her just before she passed away. Her mother received Yeshua and died. Anat’s life continued. She married and bore children. No matter how hard she tried to resist Yeshua, He did not leave her. Today she believes in Him as her personal Lord and Savior.
“This was the first time that she shared her story with another human being. She said that her husband and children do not know about her belief in Yeshua. Each night before she goes to sleep, she reads from the Old and New Testaments. I encouraged her to attend a congregation because of her lack of support and courage. At the end of our conversation she told me that she was so surprised that someone from our organization called her out of the blue. She sees that Yeshua is pursuing her till this day, and knows that He is trying to strengthen her to grow in faith.”
Peter reports, “Gozal, a tour guide, told me that he leads all kinds of tour groups from everywhere in world and enjoys learning about different cultures. From among all of the groups, the people that interest him most are the Christians. He says, ‘Throughout my life I never met such friendly and happy people as the Christians.’ He added that he has a hunger to be as happy, peaceful and pleasant as these people. This was enough of an open door for me to explain to him what Yeshua did in my life personally, and in the lives of the Christians that he met.
“I pointed to some of the prophecies, and explained God’s promise to us of a new nature and a new spirit. I read to him from the Gospel of John and he said, ‘You know, I read the book of John but I never focused on what was written.’ Gozal seemed almost ready to receive Yeshua, but he said he wanted to know even more because he realized that receiving Jesus would change his entire life. Please pray for Gozal, that God, by His grace, would give him the courage to take this step.”