El Poder De La Palabra De Dios (The Power Of The Word Of God)
By John Sessions
Community evangelism is a regular part of our visits to Guinope, Honduras, and to be honest, I was not very excited the first time I was involved in it. I’m comfortable speaking to groups but I didn’t want to go into people’s houses to share my faith. My Spanish isn’t good and it’s hard to really feel comfortable with an intense conversation that goes through an interpreter. I gave it a try during our 2011 trip, my first time in Guinope, and I found the experience to be much more rewarding than I expected. We saw people come to Christ and we got to experience the fulfillment of being the “hands and feet” of God as He was working.
In July, 2012 I was in Guinope for the second time and spent a few mornings visiting people in their houses again. One day our group consisted of three Hondurans, a few North Americans, and our interpreter. Our interpreter that day spoke both languages but I noticed that he tended to get involved in the conversations and sometimes forgot to let me know what was going on so I was staying pretty quiet.
We went to visit a woman named Marina. She invited us into her house and provided plastic chairs for us all to sit in. Our Honduran friends started talking to her and she just laughed and said (in Spanish) “I know I’m a sinner. I’ll probably sit at the feet of the Devil someday.” That sounds like a statement that should strike fear into the hearts of people sharing our faith in Jesus; however, it told me that she does believe in Heaven, Hell, and life after death. Again, I stayed pretty quiet and let our hosts do most of the talking. While I listened to the conversation, I could understand enough to piece together what was going on. God kept putting verses in my mind and I was flipping through my Bible finding things that I wanted to add to the discussion. After about ten minutes it seemed like it was about time to move on to the next house, but I asked if we could look at a few verses before we left. I asked Marina if she could read and she said she could so I just asked her to read the verses to us. Our first verse was Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” After she read it I asked her to explain it to us. The verse was no surprise to her. She had already told us she was a sinner. Next, we looked at Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” She accurately explained to us the punishment that is required as a result of our sin. The third verse was Ephesians 2:8, “For it is by grace you have been saved,through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.” By now, I could see that her attitude was changing drastically. She explained the verse and we could see the power of God’s word at work. Our last verse was Romans 10:9, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” By the time she finished reading the verse she was in tears. We all wept together as our Honduran hosts prayed with her and she became our sister in Christ.
How could you not be excited about an experience like that? It was obviously not a person who had worked in her heart. We didn’t add anything to the verses. We just asked her to read them and then explain them to us. We had witnessed the power of the Holy Spirit at work through God’s word. Seeing the change in Marina was an experience that I will remember for the rest of my life. Please say a quick prayer for Marina and ask God to send some encouragement her way today…and while you’re praying, please pray that my Spanish will improve before we go back. Thanks.