For today’s blog, I wanted to share with you what is currently going on in Nicaragua. My son, Ronnie Jr., is leading a team doing ministry in the churches, schools, and streets of that country. Working alongside the ministry Voice of Hope, over 1,000 people have already prayed to receive Christ Jesus. We are believing for reports of more salvations, miracles, healing, and deliverance.
So, without further adieu, here’s Ronnie…
Greetings from Nicaragua!
I am honored to be filling in for my father, pastor, and hero today (technology really is amazing). Seeing a great harvest of souls on this trip, I am reminded that our message is about the simplicity of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. There are so many times in our lives that we assume people know how we feel or where we stand on an issue, but in reality, they don’t know until we speak out. Preaching this crusade in Nicaragua, as well as all of the other ministry we are involved in here (with an incredible team from Abba’s House and Cedar Hills Baptist Church in Alabama), has reminded me that people don’t know how you feel until you tell them. There is a supernatural release that comes with the spoken word. Many of us are guilty of not addressing issues in a timely fashion, and then when we finally do, we are negative and harsh.
God has really been convicting me about the power of the spoken word. In Luke 6:45, Jesus said:
A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.
In James 1:19, we are told:
…Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry…
1 Peter 3:9 tells us:
Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.
The Spirit-filled life is a surrendered life. If we would all remember this — and walk in it — maybe there would be less conflict in our families, churches, jobs, and nation. For all of our Bible-thumping, denominational bickering, political ugliness, and hate-filled personal attacks, what have we gotten? Look at the mess our country is in right now. Obviously, what we have been doing is not working.
Let me tell you what works in a place like Nicaragua…
Agreement works. Nearly 50 of us have come together from three different churches in a spirit of agreement about one thing: THE LOVE OF JESUS CHRIST. We have seen over 1,000 saved already (and we still have 2 more days of ministry left).
Loving people works. Genuine love and concern for people who are less fortunate than we are is important to God.
The truth works. Being honest and upfront with people, and not taking anything for granted. Don’t assume people know what you believe. Make sure they know. Don’t assume people know the Gospel. Take the time to sit down, and share your faith with them.
Yesterday, we were driving into the town of Loscocos to work with some children and share Jesus with the people there. As we pulled up, there was a fight involving about six young men. It looked pretty serious, to the point that our interpreters were afraid to exit the bus we were in. At this point, my friend Charlie and I got out of the bus, and tried to talk to the young men involved. One young man looked at us very intensely, and refused to even acknowledge us. I went to one of the other boys, and began to share with him what many of us in America think goes without saying… that God loves him and gave His life for him. I went through Romans and told him how to meet Jesus. He began to cry, and I thought he was going to accept Jesus as his Savior. I was stunned when he told the translator that he wanted me to pray for him, but he could not pray to accept Jesus. It was then that Charlie informed me that there were three gang members watching him, and he was fearful that they would hurt or disown him.
We made our way to the other young man who appeared to be the main aggressor in the altercation. While I was certain the first young man would accept Jesus, this young man filled with “attitude” appeared to be a real “punk”, and I was sure he would be a lost cause, and would probably curse us and walk away.
Boy, was I wrong…
Some things don’t go without saying. We learned his name was Jenner, and as we began to share the Gospel with him, he began to cry. He hung on every word we said, and when I asked Him if he would like to accept Jesus into his heart, he eagerly did so. We went beyond our assumptions and reached out with the love of Jesus.
The story of Jesus’ love does not go without saying.
The simplicity of the Gospel does not go without saying.
Once we began to get to know Jenner a little better, we learned our initial assumption about the entire situation was wrong. He told us that he had been in a fight two days before, and showed us his bloody knuckles. We asked if he won the fight, and he said he did, showing us his phone that he had taken back from rival gang members.
He finished the conversation by telling us that he had a dream the night before about being surrounded by a cloud of white, and heard a voice say, “I will never leave you or forsake you.” I explained to him that God was preparing his heart for our encounter. At this point I began to weep.
In our nation, and our world, we can take nothing for granted. We cannot assume people know the Good News of Jesus’ love. We must be diligent to” spell it out” to people, to make sure the truth is known.
The love of Jesus does not go without saying.
The truth of God’s Word does not go without saying.
Our compassion as Christians should not go without saying.
I challenge you to say what is in your heart to those you love.
I challenge you, if you don’t know Jesus as Savior, to accept Him today. Pray this prayer…
Dear Lord Jesus, come into my heart. Forgive me of my sin. Wash me and cleanse me. Set me free. Jesus, thank You that You died for me. I believe that You are risen from the dead and that You’re coming back again for me. Fill me with the Holy Spirit. Give me a passion for the lost, a hunger for the things of God and a holy boldness to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. I’m saved, I’m born again, I’m forgiven and I’m on my way to Heaven because I have Jesus in my heart.
If you did that, please let us know. We would love to rejoice with you in your decision to follow Jesus.
Don’t let it go without saying.