20th July 2007
BREAKTHROUGH IN NY 2!
7th July 2007
Like I have said in the past, I don't much like sharing
testimonies, but it seems to be the leading of the Lord to share this. Some
of this stuff seems pretty ordinary to me, but every person
and situation that the Lord leads us to is different in some way, so it is
always a challenge to discern just what the Lord is doing with the person and
the situation, and then discern just how He wants us to respond in
that situation by His Spirit. I hope that this blesses some of you .
It was Sunday morning and we were standing outside the Bowery Mission, when
a man (in his early 30's or so) came up to me asking for some money for food.
Now, I sometimes give out money, and I often buy people food, but I
only do those things when I sense the leading of the Spirit to do
that. This was not the case here.
Rather than giving this man any money, I just looked at him and
gave him a loving shove (that was the leading of the Spirit -- believe it or
not). This guy was a big strapping brother who looked like he
spends most of his time in the gym and hardly looked like he was starving.
I told him just that.
I said to him, "Look at you, man! You're built like a brick out-house!
Just when was the last time you ate?"
He said, " Last night, man. Come on and buy me some food. I'm getting
I just looked back at this guy and smiled. I told him that
the Bowery Mission was getting ready to serve lunch and that he could get
something to eat there. To this he smiled. He then looked back at me
and said, "You've got a very un-alarming smile, man. I like
This then led us into a fun conversation with a lot of joking and
jostling around. I asked this brother for his name, and I
asked him a little bit about his relationship with God. He
then said that his name was Jim, and he said that he was a
believer. Jim said that he even reads the bible but he said that he doesn't
see God move in his life. I just smiled and listened as I waited to see
just where the Lord was going with all of this.
Jim said to me, "I'll be honest with you, man. I just got out of prison
on Wednesday. I have no job, and I have no place to stay. I used to be what you
might call the neighborhood pharmacist, man, if you know what I mean, but I
don't want to go back to that. I just served 7 years for dealing drugs and
now I'm all timed out. I'm not on probation or parole. I'm free. I just
can't find work or a place to live."
I said to Jim, "We can help you, Jim." He just looked at me
wide-eyed at that point. I then said, "You said that you never see God
move in your life, Jim. I believe that you're going to
see Him move today." To that I got another wide-eyed look.
I put my arm around this brother and we all (both Rick and Tim joined us at
this point) headed north up Bowery St. as I explained to Jim about an
agency right down the street that helps people to find work and
housing. Jim was still pretty skeptical that they (and we) could help
him, as he had been falling through all of the cracks in the system since he got
out of prison on Wednesday. I just kept telling Jim to have faith in God. I
told him that God was going to work something out for him, and that He
had sent us to help!
After walking a few blocks we came to a door that said BRC. Jim said,
"It's Sunday, man. There's no way that we're gonna get in today."
I just smiled as I pushed the buzzer. Within moments the door buzzed and we were
let in. As we climbed the stairs to the second floor, Jim said, "Wow! This
must be my lucky day!" In response to that I said, "Luck has
got nothing to do with it, Jim. God is sovereign. He's in control of all things.
You said that you don't see God move in your life. You're gonna see God move
today, Jim." Jim's response to that was, "Are you a fanatic, Dave? Are
you one of those Jesus fanatics, I mean?"
I laughed, and said to him, "Yes, Jim, I am."
When we got up to the top of the stairs we saw an office that
was separated from where we were by safety glass. There were a couple
of guys behind the glass who wanted to know what we all were doing there. I
politely explained (through some small holes drilled in the glass) that we
had just met Jim down at the Bowery Mission and that he was a prime candidate
for what they did there. At that point Rick, Tim and I felt led to
say goodbye to Jim, and we then proceeded back on down the
The Spirit of the Lord would not let us leave yet, though. We sensed that
we had to pray the will of the Lord on through in this situation. So, we stood
at the bottom of the stairs for a while where we could hear Jim having
a hard time upstairs. He apparently was short of some paperwork (to show that
he's not on parole or something), and it sounded like they were going to
just put him out. Jim was pleading with the people for help, and
he assured them of his desire to get his life on track, but that just
didn't seem to be having much effect on anybody. Because of a lack of some
sort of paperwork, it looked like Jim was going to be put out on the street
Tim, Rick, and I then began to travail in prayer at the bottom of the
stairs as the Spirit moved us. At one point, Jim poked his head around the
corner to look down the stairs and see us praying. I think that he was
comforted (and even a little surprised) that we hadn't left him. We continued to
travail in prayer for God to move, for God to show Jim His hand.
We prayed and prayed and prayed until we finally felt a release in
the spirit. Right when we felt the release, we heard a buzzer upstairs
... a door open ... and we noticed that all of the upstairs talking
Tim quickly ran up the stairs to find out what was going on, and
the men behind the glass simply said, "He's in. We can help
him." We were all elated and gave praise to God.
Jim saw the Lord move that day just as I told him that he
would. We were all blessed to be a part of that moving
once again; blessed to see another life simply effected by the
power of God's love, and by the persistent and Spirit led prayers of