Surprised By a Divine Opportunity to B.L.E.S.S.

What does it look like to walk in divine appointments as led by the Spirit?

This is what Michael and Phyllis experienced as they prayed for divine opportunities to B.L.E.S.S. someone.

It was a pleasant Saturday – but not an ordinary one. The night before, husband and wife, Michael and Phyllis had just completed a training on learning to share the Gospel in simple terms. That very morning, they prayed for divine opportunities to put it into practice. They chanced upon two domestic workers while they were at a park. Beginning with friendly small talk, the conversation flowed naturally into an opportunity to share the story of the Gospel through the 3 Circles.  Michael and Phyllis were surprised and overjoyed when the two domestic workers prayed to receive Christ.

“These two ladies appreciated a lot that we took time to speak with them, and they felt very valued, as they said usually people look at them like they don’t exist,” Michael shared.

While the domestic workers were initially sceptical, but when Phyllis shared the story of her own past and how Christ worked in her, they could relate to how the Gospel gives hope to us. After accepting Christ, they exclaimed, “You can share to so many like us in Singapore!”

Planting Seeds by Sharing Stories

 

“everything should be Kingdom-related and undergird what I do and say to people around me.”

 

B.L.E.S.S. is a simple framework for us to share the love of Christ – to Begin in prayer; to Listen, to Eat and fellowship; to Serve them; and to Share your Gospel story with others.

The B.L.E.S.S. training that Phyllis and Michael attended in June 2021 was an online workshop for Covenanters. It taught three ways of sharing the Gospel story – the 3 Circles, learning to tell simple Bible stories and sharing your own testimonies.

Phyllis was encouraged through the training that one need not be theologically trained to share the Gospel, but anyone can start a simple conversation and pray for an opportunity to share. Michael found that the training helped in showing how to share in simple terms that others can easily relate to, and ask thought-provoking questions that can lead to spiritual conversations.

At the same time, Phyllis emphasised the importance of surrendering the outcome to God and being led by the Spirit, rather than being driven by methods. “I’ve learned not to be so fixated on the method, instead to live and go by the motto ‘to know God and to make Him known’. To really live that out in whatever way, because God will empower when the time comes, regardless of the method used.”

Even if the hearer does not accept Christ, it may mark the beginning of the person’s journey towards God. Recounting a time when she shared the Gospel with someone who declined to accept Christ, Phyllis said, “The seed has been planted, so I may not have led him to accept Christ but he may do that when he meets another Christian. We start the ball rolling, that’s really important. In the past, I would be so afraid because I thought I had to follow through (to disciple), or succeed (in sharing) the first time. If I do my part, someone else does their part, we will be able to bring them to Christ.”

Love People by Building Relationships

 

“The point is not just going up to a stranger and sharing the Gospel. How I share the good news is to try and build relationships.”

 

Before attending the training, Michael and Phyllis had long been adopting a relational approach to connect to the people around them. They build bridges to share the Gospel by showing hospitality to the foreigners in their midst. From opening their house every Christmas to Michael’s foreign colleagues, to hosting foreign students, they see themselves as stewards of their home to show love to those who do not yet know Christ.

This has now extended to their daily interactions – to be relational first and foremost with the people whom they cross paths with. Now, they have begun building relationships intentionally with the strangers they cross paths with, in the hope that one day they would have the chance to share the Gospel with them. “The point is not just going up to a stranger and sharing the Gospel. How I share the good news is to try and build relationships.”

Phyllis and Michael (fourth and fifth from left) sharing a meal with their family and invited guests during Home for Christmas 2021

Sharing an example, Phyllis describes how she has been reaching out to the cashiers she often sees at the FairPrice supermarket she frequents. In the past, she would be in a rush, but now slows down, smiles to initiate a conversation, and asks the cashier how they’re doing to build a relationship. “I don’t have it in me to share the Gospel and immediately have someone accept Christ. I’m not empowered that way yet. But I can share through slowly building a relationship,” she says.

As for Michael, he has started to see that whatever he does, even daily actions, are something through which he can live out God’s purposes. To him, daily small interactions and chance encounters are moments to seize for God. “One big mindset shift is that whatever we do, whether we are out doing groceries or at home doing work, everything should be Kingdom-related and somehow undergird what I do and say to people around me.”

Letting God Take Over

 

“It’s not up to me to change the world, but it’s up to me to make a small difference where God can take over.”

 

Indeed, it’s not us who have the power to change the world, we are only vessels of God’s grace. Phyllis and Michael are not extroverted superheroes, they are simply faithful to God and willing to be used by Him.

“I’m actually a very shy person, who doesn’t like talking to strangers. But when I go out and see, there are so many people that don’t know God, I feel that I need to put off my own shyness and be unafraid to make Him known. Sometimes I’m like, how did I manage to speak to this person? I don’t know. What I know is when I do what He calls me to do, He empowers,” Phyllis shares.

For Michael, “It’s not up to me to change the world, but it’s up to me to make a small difference where God can take over. The rest God will do and I don’t have to worry about it.”

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Daily Devo

Daily Devotional Journal

Scripture:
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; Exodus 19:10-18
Thu, 19 May 2022

Meeting the Lord at Present

Observation:

What significant observations can you make about believers meeting the Lord in these two passages?

Deeper Reflection
AT “THE COMING OF THE LORD”, BOTH THE RESURRECTED and raptured believers will “meet the Lord in the air” (vv.16-17). It is our face-to-face meeting with the Lord. But we can meet the Lord at present while waiting for that future ultimate meeting.God came down on Mount Sinai so that His people may “meet God” (Exo 19:17). This God is an awesome holy God (Exo 19:16, 18). So God commanded Moses to “set bounds all around” for Israel to meet Him (Exo 19:12). There is now no more this setting of bounds, for we can meet God freely, quickly and easily. But be careful of the danger of familiarity breeds contempt. Who God is has never changed – He is still “a consuming fire” (Heb 12:29). What has changed – radically – is our access to God. Now, “we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus” (Heb 10:19). But still, “Guard your steps as you go to the house of God” (Ecc 5:1).God commanded Israel to “be ready” to meet Him (Exo 19:11, 15). “Be ready” is an act of the heart. Be ready with a cleansed heart: “let them wash their garments” (Exo 19:10, 14). Be ready with a consecrated heart: “consecrate them” (Exo 19: 10, 14). God required Israel to take three days to be ready (Exo 19:10, 11, 15). Our heart and who God is require the “three days”.The Coming Lord knocks on the door of our hearts that we may open it and let Him come in to eat with us and we with Him (Rev 3:20).
Application:

What changes do I need to make in my life regarding meeting the Lord?

Prayer:
Write a prayer to God as your response from your meditation on and application of the Scriptures.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise
  • Pray for Outreach/Missions/New Life leaders: To have the hunger for meeting the Lord
  • Pray for significant people
  • Pray for those in need
  • Pray for self

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