Singing the Gospel - Canvassing Program Update
“And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” Romans 10:15
Two weeks already seems so long ago! We spent the beginning of our Christmas week canvassing, trying to reach as many people during the days we were able to canvass before the holidays hit. When we came back from canvassing though, we didn’t rest, but grabbed a bag full of Desire of Ages and went back out as a group to sing carols to those in their homes, reminding them of the love of Christ and His coming to this earth for our sakes. We found many people who appreciated the voices of our quickly made choir and the gift of our book to each home.
By the end of the week, 5000 Great Controversies arrived surprisingly at the church plant, so we went over as a team and spent the morning helping the truck driver unload all the boxes, which ended with a Great Controversy going into the hand of the driver who thanked us for the hard work.
We took the service at The Entrance Church Plant that Sabbath, each person taking a few minutes to quickly share a point of our beliefs and why we believe what we do.
Our final week in the Central Coast also ended our final week in 2019. We brought in the New Year together sharing our biggest blessings of the year, and our goals for the coming one. We then travelled out to Jerusalem Bay to swim and take in the beautiful view.
May you be blessed by the teams testimonies from the past two weeks!
Lunch time with the team
I was canvassing with Hajin, and we went into a fishing rod and bait business. There was a customer there being served, we walked right in as he was finishing up, he was still looking for stuff so we went to the owner and showed him the books.
He looked like a big rough guy who was going to shut us down. That’s what I thought, especially in front of a customer. I just showed him what we were doing.
“Oh, is this The Great Controversy Between Heaven and Earth?” he said after I showed him The Great Controversy.
“Ah, no, Between Christ and Satan” I told him.
“I bought this one online as an antique in glass, it’s hundreds of years old from Europe. As soon as I saw it, I had to buy it.”
I was thinking how random this was. It wasn’t what I was expecting.
“Yeah it’s an amazing book,” he said, “I’ve read a few of the first few pages and it’s pretty heavy stuff.”
I asked him when it was written, and he told me a few hundred years ago, he guessed in the 17th century.
“Maybe it’s something different,” I told him, “this one was written in the 1800’s.”
The customer finished looking around and was waiting to be served, but the owner was happy to keep talking about what he had bought. He wasn’t ashamed to talk about this book about the great controversy between heaven and earth.
“This one’s a really good one too!” I said, “it’s been a blessing, probably on similar lines to the one you already have. Even if you have $10 or something, we could leave it with you.”
“Ok,” he said and straight away pulled out the money from the register and passed it to us.
I really didn’t think it was going to happen, but now he has The Great Controversy! Praise the Lord!
Book Stats for the Central Coast
- 424 Wholesome Homemade
- 396 The Great Controversy (including 204 small editions)
- 191 Peace Above the Storm
- 98 Health and Peace
- 34 Lessons of Love
10 Bible Study contacts have also been found during the time canvassing in the Central Coast. These contacts will be followed up by our friends at The Entrance Church Plant
I was walking up to this house and there was a man sitting on the steps of his porch, then there was a lady sitting at a table on the porch. I walked straight up to him and started telling him what we were doing and showed him the books.
“Do you have any spiritual background yourself?” I asked when I showed him Peace Above the Storm, “This one will help you get to know the true character of Jesus.”
He told me he had none, and I showed him the rest of the books mentioning they’re on donation basis.
“Do you have any money, something is telling me I need to get this one,” He said to the lady and pointing to the Peace Above the Storm.
She tells him she has a couple of coins in his purse. So, he jumps up and goes to the door, turning around and assuring me he’s coming back.
When he comes back outside, he hands me $20 from the lady’s purse.
“Do you want another book,” I ask him.
“No, just this one,” he says and takes the Peace Above the Storm.
It was a blessing!
One van heading to territory
I was with Serah and we came to a big area full of units. We went upstairs to a lady coming out of her apartment to feed some birds. When we saw her, we showed her Wholesome Homemade.
“I don’t have any money,” she told us.
“That’s okay, it’s not about the money for us,” I said, “we’d love to let you take a quick look at our favourite books.”
We showed her Peace Above the Storm, and she seemed really positive about it. I asked if she had a spiritual background.
“Yes, I’m very spiritual,” she said, “I’m not a Christian, but I’m very spiritual.”
We showed her The Great Controversy next.
“When do you think we will see the end of suffering?” She asked after seeing the words at the bottom of the book.
I explained that I believe in what the Bible tells us, and that we won’t ever be able to find it on this earth, and not until Jesus returns.
“Wow, I get goose bumps when someone speaks truth,” she said.
I was surprised that she was so positive and believed what I was telling her, yet not a Christian, so, I just asked her what her spiritual background was.
“I’m a pagan, but I still believe in Jesus Christ, and I believe in God,” she answered, and began to list off other gods too. “Did you know that there’s a spiritual warfare going on?”
“Yes, yes!” I said, “This book actually goes through that.”
“I really want to read both these books!” she exclaimed while looking at the Peace Above the Storm and The Great Controversy in her hands, “I just don’t have the money.”
She seemed to be going through a struggle on what she should do, but in the end she went inside and grabbed a donation for both of them!
It’s really exciting to think of the truths that she’s going to find in those books!
Enjoying a nice healthy lunch
This morning I especially prayed I’d be able to have some conversations. A lot of the time people would buy the books and I’d never be able to share in conversation.
In the afternoon, we met a man, he wasn’t interested, but we found out he was a Christian. I was about to leave him with a small Steps to Christ and keep going, but we ended up talking, and came to the topic of the Sabbath.
He was telling me how important it is to have a day of rest once a week, and how God set the example and rested at Creation.
“I study my Bible, and it tells us that the seventh day is the Sabbath, but all the Christians keep Sunday,” he was telling me, “How did it get changed? Was it because Jesus resurrected on a Sunday?”
I began to quickly explain how it changed through compromise, and trying to make Christianity more appealing for the pagans. I don’t think he’d ever heard that before, so it was really good I got to share.
“I really respect Adventists,” he told me when I was about to leave, “how you keep the Sabbath and don’t just go with the flow with the rest of Christianity.”
I would have loved to have given him The Great Controversy, but he was dyslexic and found it harder to read, but I was able to give him a Lessons of Love.
5,000 Great Controversy's delivered and moved into the garage at the church plant house
The last door for the morning, I didn’t see the ‘do not knock’ sign because I accidently went through the back way. A man came out asking me who I was. I had to explain three times who we are. Then I showed him Wholesome Homemade.
“Plant based? So you eat all this stuff?” He asked, so I answered that we did.
“Not only do we have great cooking books, but we have great reading ones as well,” I said, and handed him The Great Controversy.
“You’re a Seventh-Day Adventist aren’t you?” he said, as soon as he took a look at the book, “I've actually been attending the Woy Woy Adventist church for two years.”
He began to explain how he’s not yet baptised because he’s still not sure about a few things.
“I’ve always wanted The Great Controversy,” he told me, “and you came up to my house with one.”
He already had Steps to Christ, so I showed him Health and Peace and began explaining how it helped me with depression and anxiety.
“I have a history in that, it’s not good,” he said, “wait right here.”
He went back inside to ask his wife about the two books, and comes back out with a donation.
“I’ll take all three,” he said, so I give him Wholesome Homemade, The Great Controversy and Health and Peace.
I also gave him one of our music DVD’s as well to reinforce who we were and what we were doing. He was really happy!
Working hard as a team to get out those heavy boxes
In the morning I was canvassing with Hajin. We had gotten a lot of slammed doors, I think we got one Peace Above the Storm on our first door, and then nothing for the next two hours.
It was my first time actually canvassing, because I had just learnt the day before. So, we did a couple of doors, no one was home. When we went to a set of units, I just thought about getting it over and done with because I don’t like them.
We got to the first door and a man came out, so I showed him Wholesome Homemade. He called his wife out and her name was Ling*.
“That kind of sounds like a Chinese name,” I thought when I heard it.
She came out and told us that she isn’t really interested in cooking and doesn’t read English very well. So, I ask if she’s Chinese, and we begin speaking in Chinese, then she invites me into her home.
She gets a lot of food for Hajin and I, so we’re sitting and eating while she tells us she’s a Buddhist. She tells us her beliefs, and begins explaining that she believes in an eternal life cycle, so you keep reincarnating. Then we got onto the topic of creation, and she tells me how humans created themselves.
“Everything has to have a Creator in order to be made,” I tell her after seeing a glass on her table and pointing to it.
She didn’t have anything to say to that, but she wanted to agree to disagree.
“How do I go about this?” I was praying, “how do I get her a book?”
Hajin had been rapidly texting Tim while I was talking to her, so she went to go and get the Chinese Steps to Christ.
Because I know Buddhists believe in doing good works to have karma, I just told her about what I’m doing.
“I have a God Who would be really happy if you got this book,” I told her, “I’m doing a good thing.”
“Okay,” she said.
She got up and went and got a lot of gold coins, about $20 worth. We also exchanged numbers so she could ask questions of me if she needed.
She wouldn’t accept anything else from me, but I gave her that book, and she said she would read it. It was really good!
Final Sabbath evening together in NSW, reading through Matthew 25
We had our last day in NSW on Sabbath before heading down to Melbourne. Looking back on our time, and reading the many testimonies God has given us in not only the work of canvassing, but in the other parts of our day as well, it’s an encouraging thought that God sends us out each day to preach the gospel and bring glad tidings to those we meet in our everyday life. We look forward to seeing the many results in heaven from our time here!