For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.
Luke 19:10

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

At 89, Will I be Dreaming-Up Ways to Spread the Gospel?

Today, I received a hand-written letter from a Christian who is hoping to move to a Care Home in the near future. Clarence wrote: "You can only fight old age so long; it always wins. We are 89 this year." 

And then he wrote:  
I have been thinking of how to reach more people with the Gospel, as they mostly will not come to our Gospel meetings. The enclosed message is to phone people and ask for their permission to read a message to them. That might work! And other saints should be able to do this also - with their own name.
Show this to some others and see what they say. Put your own name where mine is and pray for the Lord's help.
The enclosed message that 89 year old Clarence referred to was typed. I imagined his enthusiasm and excitement as his fingers touched each letter on the keyboard. I don't know whether he has achy arthritic joints or supple ones that enabled his fingers to excitedly fly across the keyboard. One thing I do know is - he still has a love, a passion and a pulse for the good news of Jesus Christ. It wouldn't surprise me if he sincerely, in his heart-of-hearts, truly believes the Gospel is the only message that can transform a sinner's life on earth and prepare them for Heaven!!

I sensed his optimism. Where there's a will, there's a way. The passion - the pulse led to a plan. Was this for others to try out - or would he actually do it himself? This is the man that, decades earlier, came up with another telephone Gospel-sharing-scheme. Each week, he would record a 2 or 3 minute Gospel message based on a human-interest story. He would advertise the telephone number and hundreds of people would call and listen to his little story. In 2017, people may not find that technology very exciting.

Here's how his typed enclosure read -- (By the way, shhh!!! I never asked for his permission to post this so publicly online. But between you and me, I think he was hoping the idea would be shared and that you will try the same thing. I hope this breach-of-confidentiality doesn't scare you off from writing me a similar letter or email!) Here is how he envisions the phone calls might go:

Dear Sir or Madam
My name is Clarence Budd. I live in Riverview, N.B. Could I have about four minutes of your time to talk to you about something that is very important? OK!
I don't want you to buy or sell or do anything for me. I just want to talk to you about the most important thing in life. And that is getting ready for the NEXT life.
The life we now live is very short. We know that - if we look back. It has gone by very quickly.
The next life lasts forever. It will never end. There is one of two places to go when we leave this life. One place is HEAVEN - that is where God wants us to be. The price has already been paid for us to go there. When Christ was on the cross, He was punished for us, so that we could go to Heaven freely forgiven from all our sins. In the Bible, it is called - being saved. That lasts forever! How wonderful!
The other place is called HELL and is the place where people go who have rejected or neglected to 'get ready' while on earth. Most people do that. I did myself for many years. I am truly glad for the day I was saved - September 17, 1947.  Wonderful day! Saved people just want to tell others about it. It is so great to have the peace and joy of knowing where we will be forever and having sure hope - now and forever.
Please give careful consideration to this most important matter. "Now is the day of salvation," the Bible says. 2Corinthians 6:2
You can read the Bible and see these things written there. John's Gospel is the best place to start. If you are not familiar with the Bible, that is the 4th book in the New Testament.
May God bless you. Thanks for letting me talk with you today. All the best.
Clarence Budd  
PS If you have any questions, I would be pleased to hear from you. You can phone me at 506-------

Where there's a will, there's a way! People with a passionate vision are not blocked by barriers or deterred by obstacles. 

Do I have a Gospel vision? When have I crafted my own little scheme, with excitement, for getting the Gospel to people? It wasn't just a fanciful and fleeting idea. At 89, he took the time to hand-write a letter, type up an enclosure, lick a foul-tasting stamp and mail the envelope. (Maybe not - it could have been a self-adhesive, Peter, don't get carried away with words.)

You can tell by what he writes, he envisions this approach working - for churched people and unchurched. New people to his city from other places in the world who may know nothing about the Bible or Jesus Christ. All of them are potential telephone candidates.
I have heard the same brother pray and break-down (weep) at the thought of souls perishing.

What's urgent in my life? Do I care if people perish forever? Is it enough for me that I have been delivered - I have found the wonderful cure for the malignancy of sin but I have too many other things in life to occupy my mind. They will have to find-out about the cure some other way.

Robocalls and call centers are used for politics, by big banks and for many other reasons. I wonder what the impact would be of a tastefully and faithfully worded brief Gospel robocall? Does some Christian want to financially invest in such an enterprise? But back to you - maybe this is something you may wish to try - using your own words. One phone call a day!

1 comment:

Denise said...

I remember calling Clarence Budd's dial a stories back in the 80's! I remember looking forward to the next time there was a new one in my hometown of Moncton NB Canada!! What a treat they were at the time!! What a mark he has left, and will continue to leave, on so many lives for Christ!!