God has been teaching me for awhile now on the importance of being persistent, but this week He has allowed me to start seeing the effects of persistence. It started with a study in Luke on the parable of the persistent woman and the judge. Then while in the states our interim pastor told the story of evangelist Angel Martinez and the persistent woman inviting him to church…for years!! Romans 12:12 being brought to mind often, maybe because its my daughters favorite verse and written on her wall 🙂 “Rejoice in Hope, be Patient in Affliction, be Persistent in Prayer.” If you continue on reading in Romans 12 it goes on into meeting others needs, blessing those who persecute you, weeping and rejoicing with others.
So what were the effects of this persistence I saw this week? Many teams that come down do door to door evangelism. As you can imagine there are only so many houses in our community so after awhile they have all been “evangelized”. What then? Well, another team comes and they go out again usually to those same areas. This has always bothered me until recently. My thoughts were..”we have already talked to this lady three times, she knows the gospel forward and backward, why are we here again, we are wasting time”. As I said these “were” my thoughts. Do not become like I had. You are not wasting your time! You do not need to give up on that person! Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up ( Galatians 6:9). And I have proof of this verse. Just this week we had 15 first time salvations. 15 from those same houses that we had been to multiple times already. 15 added to God’s Kingdom because we did not give up!
Not only that, I noticed something different this time as we went door to door. There were many who when we initially visited they were very cold and closed to the gospel. They listened with their ears and nodded, but they did not hear it with their heart. This week I saw a softening of hearts. I saw those who listened a little closer, those who had tears in their eyes from the Holy Spirits loving conviction, those whose hearts God is breaking, and those who if we continue to go back will be ready to harvest. We cast seeds, and more seeds, and more seeds, and more seeds, and one day one of those seeds will sprout. Does a farmer quit if he has one failed crop? No, he plants again, in the same spot, because that is his field. So why do we quit so quickly? Where is your field? It may not be going door to door sharing a verbal gospel story with everyone over and over again. It may be going and buying them a cup of coffee, providing medicine when you see them sick, giving a few dollars for them to buy food, attending their child’s graduation, giving them a ride into town, visiting them in the hospital or even jail. But keep going back to that same person, do not give up on them, develop a relationship, show them Jesus’ love, and pray for them.