Saturday, February 18, 2012

Roses for Vancouver: Sharing the Faith, Hope and Love!

"By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers...Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth."  
- 1 John 3:16 - 18, ESV

   Like the the "Biblical Manhood and Womanhood" event hosted by the young adults group at Willingdon Church last Friday, last Saturday was equally memorable, because of an outreach and evangelism event downtown that I participated in with some friends of mine from Willingdon and other churches. Geared towards the upcoming Valentine's day, they had ordered more than a thousand roses, and painstakingly attached a gospel tract to each of them. The event was set to occur at the intersection of Granville and Robson streets, where I had first ventured out on my own last summer to share my faith after the Stanley Cup Riots [1].

     It turned out to be a wonderful afternoon, as we gave away almost 1,200 roses to passers-by, and in the process has a great chance to engage in conversation with many of them! People were incredulous at first; the most common question that I was asked, was "You mean these roses are free? How come?" I had the pleasure of telling each person that I gave a rose to that it came to them from us with the love of Jesus Christ, because we loved the people of this city and wanted them to know the good news of His gospel. Here are some of the photos that I took of the event:

Two baskets of roses at our corner of Robson and Granville, outside Sears
The stand at the opposite intersection of Granville and Robson, outside Future Shop
Tyron handing out flowers to passers by, and engaging them in conversation
Mauri outside the Bay, as Esther and Stephen engage a passer-by in conversation
Sharing the love of Jesus with pedestrians on the streets of downtown Vancouver!
    As things happened, some of my friends from Willingdon's Entry Level also decided to use the occasion to do some video interviewing of people on the street for our upcoming "John 3:16" event. With my tripod and little Cisco Flip in tow, we had an afternoon of wonderful conversations with a number of interesting people!

In conversation with Alexander, who was handing out flyers for Burger King

A very interesting conversation with Josh, who knew quite a bit about the Bible!
      I had a great time last Saturday, and came away feeling happy and fulfilled. It had been a long time since I got to actively engage people on the street in conversation about my faith - almost six months, I think. As I bring this post to a close, I am reminded of the following verses composed by Charles Wesley:

Jesus, confirm my heart's desire
to work and speak and think for thee;
still let me guard the holy fire,
and still stir up thy gift in me.  
Ready for all thy perfect will,
my acts of faith and love repeat,
till death thy endless mercies seal,
and make my sacrifice complete.
- "O Thou Who Camest From Above", by Charles Wesley
   The more I get to speak for Christ and share the reason that I have for putting my hope in Him, the more I feel a deep sense that this is something I am actively called and gifted by Him to do. I'm looking forward to doing more of this in the weeks and months to come. Hopefully I'll get a chance again this weekend!

Grace and Peace to you,

- The Wisdom Seeker