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Daily Devotional for Tuesday September 30, 2003
Taking Christ TO THE PEOPLE
Taking Christ TO THE PEOPLE. I have been told by people in the ministry that I am not very smart, and they may be right. When I spent my first 3 years on the road quite a bit, preaching in over 500 churches of all denominations, all over the country, I never sold books or tapes, and often got so caught up in ministering to the people that I forgot to take the offering. Professionals have asked why I don't do what everyone else in the Internet world does and have special sections on the website people have to pay for, sell advertising, sell products, and rent out the names of those who subscribe to the Daily Devotional. They ESTIMATE Liveprayer could generate well over 10 million a year rather than struggle each month to meet our budget, trusting God to lay it on people's hearts to give to support what we do. They can't understand why I do a TV program that prays for people on secular television to an audience that is 95% non-Christian, and on top of that, never sell anything or ask people for money.
You see, God called me to the ministry to build the Kingdom of God, NOT my own kingdom. All I do is geared towards sharing the hope and love of Jesus Christ with people, NOT how to use Christ to turn a profit. My goal is to build people, NOT buildings. I come each day to be a servant, not to be served.
Last week prior to our outreach in Ybor City, I had many people ask why I don't call on local churches to bring busloads of people to the event. I am very aware that most evangelistic events are planned months, even years in advance. The formula is simple. Get a venue, contact all the local churches, and fill the venue up with people from those churches. Maybe I am missing something here, but what is the real purpose if all you are going to do is preach to the people in the church? Trust me, I am not naive. I understand that when you do it that way, everyone knows what you are talking about, they all say "amen," you can sell products, AND, you can take an offering.
Again, I can't speak for what God has called others to do, but He has called me to share the hope and love of Christ with this lost and dying world, and to do that, I must take CHRIST TO THE PEOPLE. I do that each day here on the Internet, I do that 5 nights a week on my "live" television program on the UPN network, and that is what we did last Saturday night in Ybor City.
It was an amazing night. We had a vacant lot right on the main street in the heart of the nightclub district. The lot was about 30 ft. wide by 100 yards deep and could hold about 200 people, but thousands more could see what was going on from the street. We put up a stage, lighting grid, and brought in a monster sound system. Starting at 11 p.m. my dear friend, Ron Rosson, an extremely anointed Minister of Music, provided over 2 hours of great Gospel music. The music was incredible and many stopped on the street, many came inside to experience the power of God moving thru the music. It was a great contrast to the worldly music blasting from the clubs up and down the streets of Ybor.
At around 1:30 a.m. I came up on the stage. As I looked at the app. 100 people inside the lot, and the thousands walking up and down the streets outside, I quickly realized, THOSE were the people I came to Ybor to minister to. I left the stage, and set up OUTSIDE the lot right on the street. Those inside the lot moved outside, and for the next 30 minutes, I shared a message on "searching" using the story of the Prodigal Son.
Thousands of people up and down the streets of Ybor that night, could not help but to hear the fact that Jesus Christ loves them, He died for their sins, and that HE is what they were searching for. At the end of the message, I gave an invitation to know Christ and to be born again. With the monster sound system booming so that people for blocks and blocks could hear, I led people in prayer to ask Christ into their lives. Afterwards, I was honored to spend a good hour right there on the streets of Ybor, praying for people who wanted special prayer. It was a very special night and I was honored to be part of it.
***Thank you to all who fasted and prayed for this outreach. Whatever God did in the lives of people that night, it was because you were faithful to pray. There is an incredible power when the people of God pray!
In meeting with my staff, they had over a dozen people who filled out forms saying they committed their lives to Christ. As the Gospel was blaring throughout the streets of Ybor that night, only God knows the real number of hearts and lives that were changed. It is like what I do here on the Internet each day, and on my TV program each night. I share the truth of God's Word, give an invitation to know Christ as your Savior, I challenge the people to surrender their lives to the Lord, and really only God knows the actual number of people that come under the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Never forget, all God asks us to do is to be faithful. He uses our faithfulness to change lives we will never see or know about.
The challenge for you today is this. There is a world outside the four walls of the church that is hurting and lost. They are looking for answers. They will not come to your church, they will not watch Christian television, they will not hear the message of Christ unless YOU BRING IT TO THEM. You work with these people, you go to school with them, you recreate with them, you shop with them. You don't need a microphone to share Christ, you simply need to live a Godly life each day, and when the opportunities arise, tell people what Jesus Christ has done in your life.
I love you and care about you so much. God has commanded, not suggested, that we share the Gospel with this lost world that we live in. IT IS NOT AN OPTION. We are in the last days and there is one last great harvest to come in before Christ returns. The time is short and we must get serious about the job God has given us to do, working while it is still light. Again, this is a call God has given to ALL of His children.
I pray today that you will respond and do your part in helping to bring Christ to those who are lost and without hope. As that great song says, JESUS IS THE ANSWER, FOR THIS WORLD TODAY, ABOVE HIM THERE'S NO OTHER, JESUS IS THE WAY. Let us take Jesus Christ TO THE PEOPLE!!!
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ, Bill Keller