Don’t let the shades fool you. By morning these gals are ordinary florists.
By afternoon they’re ladies of the light.
Coming to CBS this fall:
The God Squad.
Sunny: We gave out a lot of roses. There seemed to be a lot more native people in town. In the area we were at I would say it was kind of an inner city area where you have a lot of street drinkers and users. So people appeared to be burnt out in the morning. But most of them had seen us the other day when we were passing out roses in the area. And some of them came up to us and said hello to us and asked for more roses.
I think they were positively impacted because we smiled at them and tried to do something positive. And they responded with friendliness. Because people on the street don’t get a lot of kindness. There was a native guy who had some kind of church background. I think it might have been Catholic because he talked about his grandma taking him to church and he talked about finding pictures of Mary, Joseph, and Jesus in thrift stores and taking them home to hang on his walls. And he told us he was a religious person because his grandma was a religious person and he liked God.
He took a rose from us. We went into a barbershop where the lady also refinished antiques and she showed some of her work to us and she said that she paints too, but she didn’t have any canvases at the shop. She let us love on her dog. She was pretty happy to see us.
Lura: We had a good day today! It started out that the first people we gave roses to, one of them was Brian. He was an older native man and he was grateful for the rose and he said that he had lost his mom yesterday and she was in some sort of assisted living. They went in to wake her up at noon and she didn’t wake up. So I asked him if I could pray for him and he said yes. So Stephanie and I prayed for him. And then he started to tell us his story and he lives on the street and sleeps behind a garbage can every night at the gas station. They let him sleep there because he doesn’t drink. And he also runs people off there who come to drink.
So he told us a couple anecdotes about some of the guys who drink, and told us there was a new drink out on the street. He didn’t really know what it was but it causes instant death. From his description it sounded like some kind of acid. I asked if he had any family. He said he had a couple brothers in another town and a sister somewhere else. He said his brothers wanted him to move closer to them so we kind of wound up the conversation by me saying, “Brian, you really need to go live by your brothers.” He said he might do that. After we left him we kind of cruised the parking lot of a shopping center with a grocery store and a pharmacy, and a dollar store and other stores.
And we handed out roses in the parking lot. It was quite an interesting mix of people. Older people and native people, and some street people also. The street people were mostly native and most of them were friendly to us. There was a native lady who was very upset we offered her a rose. She just said, “If you try and give me this rose I am going to get violent.” The reaction of her friends was interesting. They were all shocked. And they just looked at her like what’s wrong with you? The rest of them were very nice and friendly. They thanked us for giving them a rose and many said, “God bless you.”
There was only one group we didn’t approach and it was a larger group of men. We didn’t feel comfortable with just two of us women going to talk to them. When we were in that parking lot the native people were walking in and out of the grocery store, and some of the older people appeared to be afraid of them, or at the very least nervous around them. We didn’t really witness any violence other than that woman, but the police were driving around quite regularly. There was also a lady in the parking lot and I asked her if she would like to have a free gift and she said, “Free? No one gives anything free.” And I said, “We do.”
So she tentatively took the rose and she said, “What is it for? Mother’s Day?” And I said, “No. It’s from God because He loves you.” And she held the rose out to me and she said, “I can’t take it.” I said, “Why can’t you take it?” She said, “Just give it to someone else who needs it.” So I gave it back to her and I said, “No, you keep it. He wants you to have it.” And she had it in her hand all this emotion went across her face and what it seemed to say was, I don’t deserve it, why is He doing it, I love it. So she walked away with it with a little smile on her face.
Stephanie: While we were in the parking lot I spoke to Julianne and she is a member of the Baptist church. I gave her a rose and found out she was a believer. She asked about what we were doing and who we are and gave her a flyer for the concert and she was very open to it and thanked us for coming. Then we had gone past this dental office twice and then I said, “Why don’t we go in and offer roses to the dental staff and whoever else is there?” So we went in and we offered the receptionists the roses and they accepted them.
And we asked if there was anyone else on staff and I went back to Jurgen and got 15 more roses. And we gave them to the receptionists who dispersed them to everyone else. They wanted to take a picture with us and they really appreciated the roses. We just continued to give roses away but there wasn’t much more conversation. Then, after the bank, we were waiting for Sally who was talking with Frank. Yara and I and Dave were at the truck. We had several roses with us.
Tracy came by and I offered her a rose and she took it, and she said that it was the week of her birthday. And we said, “Happy Birthday!” She went her way and then came back and asked for a second rose for her sister. Then I asked her if she needed prayer. So she asked for prayer for her nephew that is struggling with addiction. So we prayed. I prayed that God would give him the desire to change and the way to do that, and that the Lord would protect his life as he is in process with this. And that he would be raised up as a man of noble character. She was very appreciative of that. His mother prays for him regularly. Gave information about the concert and she said she is coming.
Jurgen: Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Today was a day of refreshment and joy and answered prayer in regard to my family situation. In the morning we had beautiful worship time with Christine. We all were drawn close to the Lord and did some sharing and confessing. And the Lord bound us together. It was a real joy today giving out roses and just praising God walking up and down the street.
As people came I got to look in their eyes and tell them that God loves them as I gave them the rose. There was one beautiful young girl—she hung around with a rose in her hand and asked me if I had some cash, and I said, “Are you hungry?” And she said yes. So Lura and I took her to the restaurant across the street and ordered a take-out meal for her. The girl looked a little spaced out and I looked in her eyes and told her that God loves her and that she could call on Jesus anytime.
I also met another First Nations person who was very interested in what we were doing. So I told him more about God’s heart for love and forgiveness and it was a nice connection time. I hope he will come Saturday night. Also, please pray for Grant. We met him at lunch and he started to share a little bit about who he is and that his grandpa came from Germany before the war and he has grandchildren and great grandchildren. Pray that Grant will come to the concert or one of the meetings during this week and that the Holy Spirit will touch him and give him new life in Jesus.
During the time we were giving away roses Pastor Frank of Jubilee came out of the church and he seemed to be in great discomfort because he got teeth pulled. Later on another Native person walked by and Frank greeted him, asked him, “How are you doing? What have you been up to?” And then Frank just listened as he shared. The man had just gotten out of prison Friday and his girlfriend had just died, and just shared how he plans to go on to be sober. By the end of his sharing Frank took his hand and prayed for him. If I had been in the kind of pain Frank was I would have wanted people to pray for me. And maybe I wouldn’t pray for others. Thank you, Frank, for your example.
Christine: Today I did worship. And I have been praying about this set for a month. I had two songs picked out since Good Friday and I find it very funny that a lot of our prayers coincided with saying, “Yes, Lord.” The other song was “I Am Set Free” and I kept hearing Dave say it over and over again the last couple of days we have been here. So I knew I had been hearing from God, which was cool.
So anyway, I woke up and was feeling decent and I practiced and I was ok. And then I came in and then I kind of coughed some when I got here and then did worship, and it was really good. I was just praising God. Other people were having their moments. It was just fun. I knew it was God that I was able to sing because an hour later we were preparing roses and I was just trying to sing along with the worship we were listening to and I was struggling to stay on key and get words out of my mouth. So it was really God. I couldn’t do it because I had been sick. But that doesn’t matter to God because He is going to do what He is going to do regardless of what I am going through.
Yara: I was very blessed by Christine leading worship. That voice, my gosh! It was a real blessing. It reminded me of the prayer she received when we were preparing to come, saying that her voice was piercing and powerful. And then today I got to go with Dave and Sally to the Native Learning Center.
I saw how God gave favor to Dave and to Sally as they shared a little bit about their own personal story, how God changed their lives and I saw the students really listening. They really received what Dave and Sally were saying. This was a secular environment that seemed like a continuation program of some sort. And they were all different ages. I was happy to see there were people like Lynn Kowal and one of the other staff who could care for them and pray for them. If we could keep them in prayer—Lynn and the other staff lady—as they minister to people.
Ammi: I feel like it was nice seeing people carry roses around and shops displaying them, because it showed me that our ministry was leaving a thumbprint in the community. It was also nice to hear that some people were planning to go to the concert Saturday night. It was also seeing a dog today and petting him for 20 minutes, because I miss my dog, and it reminded me of home.
Dave: Today was good. Worship was good. Devotions was good. It helped me prepare for the day. We started to card and tie. I had a good conversation with Joan after breakfast. The team came in and prayed for Sally and myself and then we were off We went to the school where Lynn had asked us to give a small presentation. There were 4 staff and 4 students to start with. By the end of the presentation 2 or 3 more students came in. I was able to share my testimony with them, share how the Lord was there for me when my father died and I was able to quit alcohol and the “devil’s lettuce.” Then God was able to rescue me.
Sally got up and brought it all home in a very diplomatic way, and we could see how the kids were agreeing that Sally’s culture and their culture had similarities and why both cultures didn’t want to know or hear about the God of the Bible. But in Sally’s testimony of how God reached out to her and caused her to seek Him and because of His great love eventually find Him and realize He is good and how it changed her life for the better. I think that drove the point home to them. Their response was good. There was a kid in there that looked like one of my cousins and the guys liked my silly joke, “If me and my wife have kids one day we will give them Indian names. We will name them “Come Here” and “Get Down.” SALLY’S NOTE: (Dave begged me to include this)
Joan: Sandy gave me permission to use her name and to post her story on our website. I met Sandy in the Safeway parking lot as she came out with her groceries this afternoon. When I offered her a rose and told her God had directed us to come to Kenora and to give out roses as an expression of His love for the people and for this town, her face lit up. She read the card and then exclaimed, “I am also a Christian and God sure does love us. He healed me of cancer! “
I asked her to tell me more.
She was glad to.
“The doctors told me I had a 15% chance ….I said 1 , 5….15% chance of living. God healed me and it has been 7 years! People don’t like to hear it sometimes but, God healed me.”
I told her I believed her as He had healed me too many times. She then went on to tell how she had reverse scoliosis also and God healed her of that with over 30 back operations, saying, “I have scars but I am healed. I may not be a straight as some but I am upright and walking. ” Sandy was excited about the concert at the tent on Saturday and the other meeting times for prayer available for the community.
It was a blessing to meet her and a joy to her her story of victory.
She left me saying “Yes, post it on your webpage … I want everyone to know!”
Secondly, please pray for a young man I met down town. When offered a gift of a rose and of God’s love he said, “I can not receive it.” His eyes were welled with tears and he was leaning against a wall on the street corner. He looked into my eyes and I said, “Are you hurting” He answered, “I hurt very much and very deeply. “
I asked would you like to talk about it?”
He paused and looked deeply pained at me like he was as much puzzled at my kindness as he was at why he had such suffering in his heart.
I said, ” We have done many terrible and wrong things to your people. God is about love and healing. These things were not God’s heart. He loves you and is desiring to heal your heart. He loves all people and wants us to forgive each other. Only God can heal us . “
I told him about the concert but mostly about the open meetings and invited him to come for a time of sharing and prayer.
He replied, “Can anyone share? I would like to share a story. ” His eyes were still filled with tear and his face was strained.
“Yes”, I replied, “You can share. We have come from California , Arizona and Emo to hear you and to love you and your people. God cares for you and desires that you be free from this pain.”
He seemed quite shocked and struggling with disbelief but he responded that he wanted to come to a meeting later this week and share.
Please pray for him to have a boldness to come to a meeting and a preparation of heart by the Holy Spirit to share from his heart. Also that he recieve love and acceptance from the Father through our team and come to a beginning of reconciliation.
Thirdly, I met a young mother of 2 children. She and her daughter received a rose but the mother said,” Don’t give a rose to my son. He will likely tear it apart. He has severe autism. “
The son sitting in the grocery cart began growling as I shared with her about the roses and our call to Kenora to love the people. She appeared to be moved and her little daughter was smiling broadly holding her rose.
The little boy (about 5 or 6 years old) continued thrashing and growling and then grabbing at the flower in his sisters hand. He was making loud guttural sounds and his mother seemed accepting of this outburst as she just ignored him as she talked to me. Then she went on her way. It seemed her time in public with this child was limited and she just needed to keep moving.
I returned to the truck and Dave prayed in agreement with me for this child deliverance and that the mother would be stirred with hope to bring her son for prayer.
Lastly, as I was speaking with a man in front of Jubilee Church, who was very interested in our tour, a lady walked toward us and as I offered her a rose she totally ignored my offer and grunted and kept going.
The man I was speaking with has been in Kenora for over a year now and said to me “Ever since I met her she has been this way . She talks to no one.”
My heart was breaking for her and the pain she must suffer alone.
My prayer is that she would be offered love many times this week and the Spirit would soften her heart and overcome the rejection and resistance she carries. In God’s time I pray she would be a mouthpiece to others of God’s persistent, patient and extravagant love.
A young man came up to me on the street for a rose. He said he knew all about my God because he read a whole children’s picture book. He said he knew all the stories and had a statue of Jesus in many rooms in his house. ‘I know all about your God’
I encouraged him that yes Jesus was alive and real ….the son of God.
He said …’Now don’t scare me’
I asked what was scaring him .
He said again, “I have statues of God in my house”
I replied Jesus wants to be invited to be IN you. He will give you power to live for Him.