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Grace Community International
Rev. John S. Mahon  |  Houston, Texas
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My Experiences Witnessing – From Albuquerque to Nigeria & Back
TUESDAY, AUGUST 01, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
My Experiences Witnessing – From Albuquerque to Nigeria & Back
Michael R. Daily, July 2017

This is a summary of my witnessing experiences from Albuquerque to Nigeria and back. I used the same method in all cases, The Bridge Illustration as described in the two page document, “First Person Five Minute Bridge Illustration” available at: http://gciweb.org/2011/04/youth-bible-study-materials-michael-r-daily/
A study on this method and why it is constructed the way it is can be found on the same web page with the title of, “Good Works, Witnessing, & Evangelism”.

As an introvert who does not have the spiritual gift of evangelism, I find that having the Bridge Illustration memorized so I don’t have to invent what to say each time to be a great help. Because this is a first person presentation of the Gospel, people will not typically say anything or ask any questions until the end. I’m just sharing how I became a Christian and they gave me permission to do so. I have a blank sheet of paper folded and in my shirt pocket along with a pen and a “Steps To Peace With God” tract from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. I am most comfortable in an aisle seat on flights so I try to reserve those whenever possible. That way I only have one person sitting next to me to think about.

On the flight from Albuquerque to Dallas I sat next to a man about my age named Henry. Henry is a film producer, mostly documentaries, and was very willing to talk with me during the 2 hour flight (thanks to those praying for us). When the person first sits down I offer a handshake and say, “Hi, I’m Mike”. Their response will give me a good idea of how open to talking they are. On this mission trip I ask them where they are headed. This usually leads to a similar question back to me and I can let them know I am on a Christian mission trip to Nigeria. In contrast, if I am travelling but not on a mission trip, I will ask them what they do. When they ask me a similar question I say that I work as an engineer but what I really enjoy doing is working with teens at my church. The idea is to let them know right away that I am some type of Christian. Once the flight has reached a cruising altitude and the announcements have stopped I asked Henry, “May I share with you how I became a Christian? It only takes 5 minutes”. If the person has been talkative up to this point they usually will say yes. I shared the Bridge Illustration with Henry and he listened quietly. At the end I asked Henry if he would like to receive Christ right now as his lord and savior, but Henry declined. He kept the paper with the Bridge verses on it and stated that he had learned some things he didn’t know about Christianity from the Bridge. I also gave him a “Steps to Peace With God” tract pointing out the Billy Graham website and phone number. Because of his documentary work around the world, he has seen the large impact that Christian missionaries have had throughout the world and we spent quite a bit of time talking about why native peoples would be attracted to the Christian gospel and want to change instead of keeping their native lifestyle. So we talked about the depravity of man and how salvation in Christ and becoming a new creature is attractive to people in all cultures because the Holy Spirit convicts all men that they are sinners, that God is righteous, and that Judgment is coming. It then came out that Henry was ethnically Jewish. So then we talked about how God continues to work through the nation of Israel, keeping the promises He made to Abraham even though as individuals most Jews have not become Christians.

On the flight from Dallas to London a Japanese couple was sitting next to me. The wife was closest to me and could not speak English. The husband, seated on her other side, could speak limited English so I conversed with them for a few minutes but decided it would be too difficult to communicate the Bridge Illustration with them.

On the flight from London to Lagos I had a middle seat with Rev. Mahon on one side of me and another man on my other side. I introduced myself and started a conversation with him. His name was Barry and he was a professor at a University in Baltimore. Although originally from Senegal, Barry had lived and worked in the US for the past 30+ years. The plane was taking a long time to take off from Heathrow so I went ahead and asked Barry if I could share with him how I became a Christian, it only takes five minutes. He said yes and listened as I shared the Bridge with him. At the end he wanted to pray to receive Christ so I led him in that prayer. This was the first time I had shared the gospel on an airplane before we were airborne. Barry had a Methodist background but, like Henry, felt that he was hearing things he had not heard before. Barry owns a Bible and was eager to look up the Bridge verses for himself when he gets home. I also gave him a Steps to Peace with God booklet.

At New Covenant Baptist Church in Lagos, during a break between workshops and talks, I was talking with two young boys, brothers, probably around 6 or 7 years old. They seemed self-controlled and interested in me so I shared the Bridge Illustration with them. They both prayed to receive Christ. During a workshop for the teens, most of the other children of all ages joined us, forming a group of about 12 children and teens. I gave them all paper and pens and asked them to copy what I was doing as I did the Bridge Illustration. When we got to the questions at the end, I asked them to draw a circle on the part of the bridge where they currently were (God’s side, Man’s side, or somewhere in the middle). I then led the group in a prayer to receive Christ for those who wanted to do that and be on God’s side for sure. I then asked them to put an X on the Bridge Illustration where they thought they were now. I saw that at least three of them had moved themselves to God’s side. I then asked if anyone had questions about the Bridge and a few had questions about eternal security which we discussed and looked up verses for. I think some of the kids became Christians that day but because it was a group setting I don’t know how many for sure. Later I met with one of the teens, did a Bible study on eternal security with them and then they prayed to receive Christ one on one with me.

On Sunday morning, before church, I was waiting in the lobby of our Nigerian hotel for our team to check out (we stayed at the hotel for two nights while ministering at New Covenant Baptist Church). There was a Nigerian man in his late 30’s, early 40’s sitting on the couch. I introduced myself and talked with him a little. He was the CEO of a security company with 300 employees. I asked him if I could share with him how I became a Christian, it only takes 5 minutes. He said yes, so I shared the Bridge with him. It was the first time I have shared the Bridge Illustration with someone where they started quoting the verses with me! He was a Christian and could tell me the month and year he received Christ (May 1994). We continued talking about his daughter being in boarding school. I encouraged him to try to get the family back together under one roof which he said he had already been working on figuring out how to do that.

On the 11pm flight from Lagos to London the person next to me was not interested in talking. On the flight from London to Dallas I was sitting next to a mid-school boy with his mother next to him and the situation did not seem good for attempting the Bridge.

On the flight from Dallas to Albuquerque I sat next to a high school man who had just finished touring Germany for a month on his own. He was very open to talking so I shared the Bridge with him and he prayed to receive Christ. For the next two hours he asked questions, as most Americans his age do, about apologetics issues related to science and the bible (evolution, age of the earth, starlight, flood, Noah’s Ark, etc). He was very interested in our discussions and I gave him the address of the website where he can download more information on these issues. His parents were divorced and he was somewhat fascinated that my wife and I met at age 15 and have stayed married since age 22. At baggage claim he met my wife and we met his mother. As I was off gathering my bags, he went out of his way to say a final goodbye to me before they left for their home in Taos, NM.

Category:  Cameroon - 2016

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Thoughts from a Layman in Nigeria, by Richard Smith
FRIDAY, JULY 28, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
Thoughts from a Layman in Nigeria, by Richard Smith I just returned, literally, from my recent GCI mission trip to Lagos, Nigeria. It was a privilege and joy to co-labor with John Mahon and Mike Daily. My travel included over 30 hours in the...
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Things God Taught Me From My Time In Nigeria, July 2017 Michael R. Daily The trip to Nigeria was th
MONDAY, JULY 24, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
Things God Taught Me From My Time In Nigeria, July 2017 Michael R. Daily The trip to Nigeria was the second mission trip that I have been on, the first one being to Zambia a few years ago. One of the things I have learned from these trips is the...
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Your Faith and Prayers Are Making A Difference In Nigeria
SATURDAY, JULY 22, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
Your Faith and Prayers Are Making A Difference In Nigeria (Please forgive the errors in this blog – I am quickly getting it out to you while I have internet access and do not have time to properly edit.) God the Holy Spirit teaches the church in...
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WEDNESDAY, JULY 05, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
Guilt Free Victory Prayers: Reflections on the Fourth of July I am thinking back on the week leading up to the celebration of the 4th of July. Whether Christian radio, TV, Bible studies, internet or church, I cannot think of a single instance...
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Exploding The Myth - 25 Exemplary Monogamous Fathers In The Bible
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 28, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
Exploding The Myth - 25 Exemplary Monogamous Fathers In The Bible I can remember early in my Christian life hearing two statements. The first: “Matthew 28:19 & 20 is one of the few instances in the Bible where the holy Trinity is directly taught”.
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Honoring Our Mothers All Year Long Part Two – a few practical applications
THURSDAY, JUNE 15, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
Husbands - What to do as a husband and father to insure being a mother is a blessing to your wife - Proverbs 31:28-29 & 31 “Her children rise up and bless her; Her husband also, and he praises her, saying: ‘Many daughters have done nobly, But you...
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Reflection - “Honoring Our Mothers All Year Long” Part One
FRIDAY, JUNE 09, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
Proverbs 31:28-31 28 Her children rise up and bless her; Her husband also, and he praises her, saying: 29 "Many daughters have done nobly, But you excel them all." 30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, But a woman who fears the LORD, she...
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In Celebration of Mothers
TUESDAY, MAY 09, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
In 1914, Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation designating Mother's Day. Now Mother’s Day is celebrated in more than 46 countries throughout the world. Everybody loves Mother’s Day, yet more and more this holiday is being downgraded in the...
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Two Disappointing Questions Concerning GCI Missions
SATURDAY, APRIL 29, 2017
Posted by: Grace Community International | more..
Two Disappointing Questions Concerning GCI Missions I continue to be disappointed at two reoccurring questions that are asked concerning our mission work… #1 – But isn’t it against the law to talk about Jesus and convert people? #2 – Is all you do...
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