Traveling

This last month and a half we’ve been busy traveling and visiting brethren in different parts of the country.  We spent the first part of June visiting brother Jim in Detroit.  He regularly goes to the inner city and club districts to preach the gospel.  I was able to join him a few times as he and some brethren preached in these area’s.  It reminded me a lot of when Lisa and I would go to South Dallas to preach.  So many people with hardened hearts and many who actually know much of the word of God.  All professing to be saved believers yet living as if they’ve never met Christ.  And the truth is probably 98% of them professing to know Christ have never met Him.  It really is amazing that you can preach the gospel for the first time to someone who professes to believe in Christ.  It truly is a sad condition in the world today.  In all this though the Lord continues to give us great grace to preach to others.  Though I’ve spent much time street preaching lately I’ve been praying that God would lead me to people who have a receptive heart.. People who He has been working in.  God had been greatly answering my prayers!  I can’t tell you how many people the Lord has led me to recently who have been completely opened to the gospel.  It really has been a blessing.  One day while I was backing up our trailer into Jim’s driveway and having some difficulty.  As I was going back and forth, back and forth trying to get it lined up and a guy starts yelling at me giving me directions to back it in.   We finally get it in and I get out to meet this guy.  His name is Ernest.  Come to find out he’s an ex-gang member and lives down Jim’s street.  I gave him a gospel tract and told him we should get together sometime and do a bible study.  He said ok and walked off.  A couple days later Lisa and I were walking the kids around the neighborhood and I saw Ernest in front of his house.  We stopped and talked with him and learned he had a Catholic background.  He told us of confession, going to mass, and all the other unscriptural practices of the Catholic Church.  He wasn’t very committed to the Catholic church he was just semi-raised a Catholic.  We told him what the word of God said on each subject, were able to share our testimony with him, and talk to him about the necessity of the new birth.   He was really open and we set a time to start having bible studies with him.  Basically since that day we’ve been able to have a bible study with him and his son just about every day.  It’s been amazing.  We’ll be reading through the scriptures and he’ll just breakdown in tears and see his need for the Lord.  He really is hearing the gospel for the first time.  We just continue to pray for him, teach him the word, and exhort him to put his faith in Jesus Christ.  It would be so easy to just ask him to “accept Christ” and pray a prayer with him and to declare him saved.  This happens so often in Christendom today.  And as one brother put it people end up “plucking unripe fruit”.  When and if Ernest get’s saved it will be because God has given him a revelation that Christ has personally died for him and he truly believes it.  No one will have to tell him he is saved…. God’s Spirit will tell Him!  And that is true assurance.  Though the Lord uses His saints to reach His elect, salvation is of the Lord.  As John 1:12,13 says:  


“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”


Here’s a picture of me and Ernest outside of Jim’s place:

Picture
While in Detroit we took a few days to visit a sister Lisa had been in contact with in Canada.  It was very edifying time and seemed ordained of God for us to be their at that time to edify our sister in Christ.  After being in Detroit for about three weeks we headed over to Rhode Island to visit another brother and sister in Christ.  It was a challenging trip as it rained almost the whole time we were there and our car had some major trouble and was in the shop a few days.  Even with all that we had a blessed time in fellowship exhorting them with the word of God.  We stayed in Rhode Island for a week and headed back to Detroit.  When we got back to Detroit Ernest was able to give us a place to park our trailer at his place.  We were able to spend more time with him and his mother in the word.  So right now we’re staying at his place and ministering to him and his family.  The good thing is when we’re not here brother Jim will be able to continue to teach him the word and hopefully see him born again into the body of Christ!  

We’ll be leaving Detroit this weekend to visit a family in Pittsburgh for a couple days and then we’ll be headed back down to Texas.  Lord-willing we’ll be in Texas for a few weeks to rest together as a family , visit Josef and Lina as they come up from Mexico, and fellowship with some brethren living in Texas.  It’s been a lot of travel but it’s been a joy to fellowship with and to encourage the saints of God!  

Scattered Sheep

As we’ve traveled we’ve seen many of God’s people who lack fellowship and often times find themselves isolated due to the condition of the church today.  Sometimes people come out of the institutional church seeing the falsehood in it.  Yet many times they then lack fellowship due to their inability to fellowship with those who hold to different view’s on biblical topics.  Many times when believers come out of these churches they go through a period of being alone.  They also get used to this and find it difficult to fellowship with other saints.  Again…especially those who hold different view’s on biblical topics.  Yet the scripture is clear when it says:

“And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:
Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching” (Heb 10:25)

It is absolutely important, no matter where we find ourselves, to be in fellowship with other saints of God.  To worship the Lord together, and as the scripture says, to exhort one another as we see the “day” approaching.  Even if a believer cannot agree with another believer on every point of doctrine (provided it’s not heretical) then believers should be able to fellowship with each other.  I fellowship with many believers who believe differently than I do on many subjects yet the common factor that makes our fellowship possible is the desire to carry our cross in Christ.  The desire to live our lives completely for Christ.  This is not to say that doctrine doesn’t matter.  Your doctrinal views on some subjects may cause you to have to “part ways” when it comes to teaching or ministry in some area’s BUT it should never cause you part ways in being able to love, pray with, and exhort your brethren in Christ.  

I know there are many who say they cannot find true fellowship.  And this could be the situation in some cases.  Some might be in a place where they actually cannot find true brethren to fellowship with or at least for a season of time.  Yet I’m not convinced it’s as common as I hear.  I know that if someone is truly the Lord’s they will desire to fellowship with other saints and will seek it out.  They know that the body of Christ and interacting with the body of Christ is of utmost importance.  They will want to be around others who also have the Spirit of Christ in them.  If they truly do not have fellowship they will be praying that God will bring them into contact with other believers and actively pursing it.  It will be more important than the city they live in, the house they have, or the job they hold.  (I know that me and my wife be willing to forsake any of those things to be around brethren.)  For some that absolutely cannot find fellowship where they are at, if possible, it may be necessary to forsake those things and move to where some brethren are.  Even if it‘s a place you don‘t like!  Some will say they fellowship with other saints through the internet, which in part might be true, but it will certainly never replaces the type of interaction we are to personally have as the body of Christ.  If that’s your only source of fellowship, while you are seeking true fellowship in a body or with another believer, then praise God.  But don’t give in and settle for it when Christ has died for us to be part of something so much greater!  If you do find yourself in a position where you have no fellowship then actively pray to the Lord about it.  Begin to pray for the saint’s of God and ask the Lord to bring you in contact with another saint or a group of saints that you can fellowship with.  You’ll certainly be praying in the will of God!

Thank you for praying for us, and if you remember, please keep us in prayer as we travel through PA and head back to Texas.  


IN Christ,

Sean & Lisa Scott
www.preachingjesuschrist.com
 


Comments

07/22/2009 09:02

Sean, thank you for the detailed report. I saw the photo of Ernest on Lisa's blog, but now it's good to learn more about him. I will be praying for him and his son, and his mom.

I liked your thoughts about fellowship. I was without fellowship for so long, but now I have one sister to read and pray with, plus a married couple to meet with on Sundays. They are half an hour away. I'm praying for more, but very thankful for the Lord's provision.

I was reading a blog, just yesterday, that said that if we isolate ourselves from those even in the "institutional churches", it can be because of pride and rebellion in our hearts. For surely the Lord would have some true believers there. Plus, I am learning, that we are called to forbear with one another. It's not always easy to get along, even with Christ in us, as the flesh is also at work. But the Holy Spirit can work love, patience, and forgiveness in our hearts toward one another. How can we develop that if we are outside of the Body, hanging on to our individualism?

Praise the Lord for what He is showing you! I pray that you and Lisa will continue to be used to exhort and build up the Body of Christ. I also hope that you will have a blessed time of refreshing down in Texas :-)

Because of Christ,
Brenda

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