CROSS COUNTRY NEWS
WHAT’S HAPPENING ON THE ROAD FOR JESUS WITH THE ROWES MARDI GRAS 2004_______
PRAISE THE LORD! GREETINGS, MY PRECIOUS BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST! I HOPE THIS NEWSLETTER FINDS YOU ALL WELL AND BEING ABUNDANTLY BLESSED BY OUR LORD!
MARDI GRAS 2004 UPDATE
Mat 10:16 Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.
Brian, Feather and I went out to Bourbon Street on the 17th, which was the Tuesday night before the big Mardi Gras weekend. I told Brian that I felt led to hold my big “None To Perish, All To Repentance” banner up on Bourbon Street for a while. I have a fiberglass painter’s pole that extends to 20 feet which I use to hold my banner up above the crowd. I generally lift it up as high as 12 to 15 feet above the crowd. We brought the banner to St. Louis and Bourbon and stood it in the middle of the street.
The program “COPS’ was filming the Mardi Gras festivities that night. After we had been out there for about a half-hour, a police officer followed by a camera crew came up to me and tapped the pole. He asked: “Is this PVC?” At that moment I knew that if I told him it was anything BUT PVC, he would tell me I had to get it off the street. Yet a minister of the gospel is not to lie. So I responded to the prompting of the Holy Spirit and looked him in the eyes, and said, “It’s set, man.”
Since we live by faith, we have purposed over the years to only let our needs be known to God, and never to man. When a person asks us if we have any needs, I respond to them by telling them that “We’re set”, meaning that God is taking care of us, and we are O.K.. Well, that’s what the meaning of my comment to the police officer was as I was standing there on Bourbon Street. “It’s set, man.” He looked at me, and said, “as long as it’s PVC”, and turned to the cameras and explained that crosses and religious paraphernalia were permitted on the street, but they had to be made of PVC.
This encounter set the stage for the rest of the outreach. PVC was the building material for our banners and our crosses. Brian had a cross made out of PVC from last year, and he was ready for the season.
Wednesday was my daughter Talitha’s 18th birthday. We celebrated it before we went out on the streets with a crawfish dinner, supplied by Brother Francis Lovell.
TALITHA’S BIRTHDAY CAKE. THE CRAWFISH FORM A “T”
TALITHA’S BIRTHDAY FEAST: CRAWFISH!
These pictures will no doubt disturb some people. I apologize if it causes you to stumble or to stand in judgment of us for eating an "unclean" thing like a mudbug! Let me assure you that while crawfish may not be good for you personally because of the Law you are under, the Grace of God tells me that crawfish are good for me, because I recieve them with thanksgiving!
1Ti 4:1 Now
the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from
the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.
4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:
5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.
I do not use that Scripture verse as an attack against you who are under the Law...I am just reminding you that if you have asked Jesus Christ into your heart, and you still find yourself under the dietary restrictions of the Old Covenant, either Paul was wrong in his letter to Timothy, or the man or woman you have opted to follow are wrong, and they are leading you down the wrong path! Now, if you are a Jew or a Muslim, you have not yet realized that Jesus Christ is the Messiah Who came to set you free from the Law, and Who came to put His Perfect Law into your heart, and hence you are obligated to obey the Law, because it is the only hope you have. Unfortunately for the Jew, the temple was brought down shortly after the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and so for centuries there has been no sacrifice for the remission of your sins. Only the Blood of Jesus Christ is able to cleanse you from your sins. Many Jews today are coming to Jesus Christ, and realizing that He is the fulfillment of the Propetic Word. And the Muslim has embraced a different God than the God of Jacob, Isaac, and Abraham, so you have no hope at all, unless you forsake your false teachings, and embrace the One (Jesus Christ) Who came to reconcile you to His Kingdom!
The Kingdom of God is not in meat and drink, but in Righteousness, and Peace, and Joy in the Holy Spirit!
During the afternoon, Mel Paul, Brian O’Connell, Richard Martin and myself went to the gates of the city and prayed for the Lord to be glorified this year in an unprecedented way. We prayed that the revenue from the revelry would be down this year.
Wednesday night we went out to Bourbon Street after the evening service at Celebration Church with several soldiers from Celebration Church. I went out with my banners, and Brother Jules of Celebration Church was faithful to carry them out to Bourbon Street for me. It was a good night of harvest. On the way in a couple of souls were ministered to and prayed with some of the Celebration Church soldiers to ask Jesus into their hearts. Sister Mercedes was rejoicing all evening over souls that prayed with her to receive Jesus.
On Thursday morning, I went out and bought enough 3” PVC to make a thirteen foot high cross.
Also on Thursday, Brian, Chris Mielleur, Francis Lovell, and I went on a prayer walk around the French Quarter. During the prayer walk, we were able to pray with two backsliders to be restored to a right relationship with the Lord and one sinner to receive Jesus Christ as his Lord.
BRIAN, FRANCIS, & CHRIS
Thursday night I went out with the PVC cross, and hung my JESUS and ONE NATION UNDER GOD banner from it on one side, and “NONE TO PERISH” on the other side.
On Friday, sister Pat Hornick blessed me with a beautiful banner for my silver trumpet. The banner reads: ‘BE HOLY AS THE LORD IS HOLY’. I took the banner out on Bourbon Street Friday night with my “NONE TO PERISH” banner. Many people looked up at the message of the banner. I had several people who commented positively on the message.
Suzanne Myers came from Port Arthur to win some souls, and she was busy all night. She had made two banners that she brought out with her.
SUZANNE AND HER BANNERS
My daughters Talitha and Feather also came out with us that night. The press of the crowd on Bourbon Street was tremendous. I was blessed to see Pastor Dennis of Celebration Church out there ministering to the people with the RAVEN team headed up by Troy Bohn.
Many people came to be ministered to that night. One lady in particular would come and talk to me for a while and then leave, and eventually would return to talk some more. I told her that she didn’t have to sell out her soul for a little bit of foolish revelry. She would tell me to lighten up, and that I needed to learn to have fun. I told her that it’s not “fun” to mock God by telling Him through our actions that His Plan isn’t good enough for us. She would leave for a while and then would be back, again, telling me I needed to lighten up. After the third time, she came back to me and said I needed to laugh more, and be happy. I asked her how could I laugh when people all around me were running straight toward Hell. She said, “They’re not running to Hell – we’re just having fun! You need to smile and be happy!” I said, “Sis, I have a joy you don’t even have a clue about. Your happiness is just a temporary thing that’s brought about by fulfilling your lusts and desires. When the party’s over you’ll have to try to figure out some other way to bring you out of your depression or your boredom. Your happiness is dependent on circumstances. But the Joy that I have is something you can’t even comprehend. I can’t “smile and be happy” out here when I see how you are just prostituting yourself for a few worthless beads, and running headlong to hell.” She got real serious then. Her smile was replaced by a frown, and her eyes began to brim with tears. “Jesus has something better for you, sis,” I told her. She turned around and walked into the crowd. I saw her the next couple of nights. Each time I encountered her, I would tell her that Jesus had something better for her. I could see the conviction of the Lord in her eyes.
Also on Friday night, a man came up to me and told me that I was intimidating the people by being out there. I said, “Bro! How can I be intimidating? Here I am, with a white robe and a cross. How can that be intimidating?” He said, “I don’t know how to explain it, man – you just are, that’s all!” I explained that it was conviction that was gripping him. It’s a blessing to see the Holy Spirit work on the hearts of people even where sin has such a powerful foot hold.
…BUT WHERE SIN ABOUNDED, GRACE DID MUCH MORE ABOUND (ROM 5:20)
On Saturday night, a precious Evangelist in training from Baton Rouge named Todd came to labor with us on Bourbon Street. What a blessing to see him constantly ministering to the lost souls on the street. He was so blessed, that on Monday night, he brought his wife, Tuesday with him. They were both blessed mightily. You can’t help but be blessed when you are in the Lord’s Will.
Each night we had a pretty good crowd go out with us Todd and Tuesday are in the rear left side of the picture above. Some precious brothers in the Lord from Texas joined us for the late night outreach for several nights. One is kneeling behind Able who is also kneeling, and the other is holding on to Michael's cross. Also pictured are Michael Siemer, his wife, Maria, their daughter Mary, and their son, Michael (to the left of the sign), Talitha (Next to me), Mercedes, and Feather, Brother Meridith also from Texas is taking the picture. What a wonderful army of the Lord!
One man in particular who was pretty high up in rank in the Coast Guard, was drawn to the cross and the Banner that Pat had made. His name was Paul. He told me that he had received Jesus Christ as his Lord, but had let the concerns of the world choke out his love for the Lord. He spent about an hour and a half with me at the cross, and resolved in his heart that he would begin to put Jesus first again. While we were together, some Satanists came to give me a hard time. They got in my face and were going to do me some harm, when Paul intervened and told them that they had better get down the street or he would have to do them great bodily harm. They obeyed him. Whenever a mocker would come by, he would get very aggressive toward them. I told him that when I came out on Bourbon Street I was expecting that sort of thing and that the Lord would protect me. He was very impressed that I would be there and set myself up for such abuse. I told him that if I hadn’t been there, I wouldn’t have met him, and that the abuse was worth it for just one soul. During the time he was with me, on two or three different occasions, his friends would come and try to get him away from me, but he would tell them that he had found a good place to hang out for a while, and not to worry about him. I believe he left Bourbon Street that night a changed man, restored to his Father.
It was a pleasure to have my two oldest daughters working with me this year.
FEATHER AND TALITHA IN THE FIELD
On Monday night Feather ministered to A man named Ed for quite a while. Soon he came over to me, and told his story. Ed has been married three times. When his first wife became a Christian, Ed became her enemy, and they ended up divorcing. His second wife also became a Christian, and Ed gave her a hard time for her faith, and that marriage also ended up in a divorce. Now his third wife is beginning to go to church, because his daughter recently became a Christian and was witnessing to his wife. Ed had many questions, and we talked for a long time. At one point he left to find a public toilet, and told me he would be back. Generally the crowd just sweeps a person away, and that’s the end of that. But Ed came back just as he said he would. As we talked, and he asked questions, I could see the Holy Spirit at work in his heart. He would tell me what a terrible person he had been and he didn’t believe that God could forgive him for his sins. I would tell him about the depths of God’s Grace.
Just as he was getting to the point where I knew he would sincerely pray to receive Jesus in his heart, a guy wearing a mask came and started clowning around between us. He would dance and throw up his arms and shout in our faces, and I continued to talk to Ed, ignoring the man in the mask. I explained to him that Satan didn’t want him to pray to receive Jesus into his heart, and that he uses people as his puppets to keep us from realizing God’s Grace. At one point the man bent over and looked up at both of us, trying to distract us, and I looked him in the eyes, and simply said “Be gone!” Immediately he stood bolt upright and took off running away from us through the crowd like a swarm of bees was chasing him! Ed looked at me with a quizzical look of wonder, and I explained to him that Jesus has given us authority over all the power of the enemy.
I then asked him if I could pray for him, and he said yes. I pled the blood of Jesus over him and bound the spirits that were hindering him from receiving the Grace of God in his life. I then told him he was free to ask Jesus into his heart if he wanted to, and he said he wanted to, so I led him in a prayer to receive Jesus as his Lord and Savior. When we finished, he simply stood there, clinging to my cross, with his head down, and I could tell he was weeping. After a good five minutes he looked up with wonder in his eyes, and proclaimed, “Man, I feel strange! It seems like I am lighter! It seems like I could float away!” I told him how the Lord had lifted the burden of sin from his shoulders. His countenance had changed completely. Wonderful Jesus! We spent about another 30 minutes together, and the crew was ready to call it a night. It was 2:30 in the morning. We got home at 3:30. It had been somewhat of a long night, but it had been a wonderful night.
On Tuesday night, Talitha brought a young man over to me whose name was Justin. He had just prayed with Talitha to receive Jesus into his heart. Two months earlier, his father had committed suicide, and Justin was carrying a lot of pain and grief. His father had been a Christian, and no one knew why he committed suicide. Justin’s pressing question was “Is my father in Heaven?” I explained that Satan is a thief and a liar, and wanders about like a roaring lion, seeking who he may devour. Satan is always trying to deceive people and to rob them of their life. I told him since I did not know his father, I couldn’t tell him where his father was, but God is a True and Righteous Judge, and Justin could rest in that understanding.
If his father was in heaven, Justin would see him one day if he had been sincere in asking Jesus to be the Lord of his life. Justin wanted to stand by us all night. He told me that I reminded him of his father. The Lord gave us many comforting words to minister to him with. Thank You, Jesus. There are so many hurting people. So many tragic stories. So many that need to hear of the Grace of God that is in Jesus Christ.
ROM 10:14 HOW THEN SHALL THEY CALL ON HIM IN WHOM THEY HAVE NOT BELIEVED? AND HOW SHALL THEY BELIEVE IN HIM OF WHOM THEY HAVE NOT HEARD? AND HOW SHALL THEY HEAR WITHOUT A PREACHER?
What a wonderful privilege to see my daughters responding to the Call to cause some to hear. What a wonderful privilege to see the soldiers at Celebration Church continuing to be faithful in their mission to reach the lost. What a wonderful privilege to live in these days, and to be a vessel the Lord has seen fit to use in His fields.
AN AWESOME TESTIMONY ABOUT THE LORD’S PROVISION
Everyone who knows us and the ministry that the Lord has called us to are aware that in the 16 years of service to him in ministry we have tried our best to make it a practice to not let our needs be known to anyone except our Father in Heaven, so that He would be Glorified through genuine testimonies of His Intervention of Provision on our behalf.
A lot of people have faith in their ability to convince people to sow into their ministries. Our faith is in God Who is more than able to speak to the hearts of others! If I am boasting, I am boasting in the Lord, Who continually shows Himself Faithful! Let the Lord God Almighty be glorified, for His Ways are above our ways!
Michelle and I have delivered each of our 6 children at home...2 were born in Arizona before we embarked on our ministry journey, and since then, the rest have been born in a bus or a motorhome. Elijah was born in Iowa. Grace was born in Tennessee. Noah is a Texan, and Abigail was born in Florida. We are expecting our 7th to be born in Louisiana at any day now. Although I have had the distinct privilege of delivering them all, we have had a midwife or someone medically experienced to help us with them all except Elijah, who I had to solo with (It went well, by the way!) We prefer to have someone more knowledgeable than ourselves to be there in case of complications, and to help the birth to be as smooth as possible for Michelle. She doesn’t need the stress of relying on my incompetence in the event of an emergency!
For this pregnancy, it took us a while to find the help we wanted, but the Lord allowed us to connect with a midwife, Emmy Trammell in Hammond, which is about a half an hour away. The price she is asking to help us is reasonable... $500.00, but it is a bit high for what we could afford, but as usual, we submitted it to the Lord, and prayed that if this is His Will, He would supply the finances. It didn't seem like we would have the money at the time of the birth, but we already told her that, and she said it would be o.k. if we paid her over time. I don’t like to do that, though. I don’t like debt of any kind. I was kind of thinking that maybe we would just go ahead and solo it if the money wasn't on hand...She's only seen us for the last month, and like I said, 500.00 is quite a bit of money for us. The weekly prenatal checkups have been a blessing to us. It’s good to know whether things are going like they are supposed to or not.
Recently, we got a thank you card in the mail.
It wasn't signed by the sender, but had five 100.00 bills in the card. Obviously, Emmy and her co-woprker, Mona are in the Lord's Plan here! The reason I am conveying this testimony is to encourage those of you that have a need. Over the past 16 years of ministry, God has always been faithful to provide our every need without us having to make mention of it. The person who was used by the Lord to provide this specific need obviously gets my e-mail messages. They wrote: "Thank you for the many prayers and teaching, correction and God's Wisdom - may this small gift be used as God leads" No Signature, except for the Love of God that was manifested in these words. The next message you get from us will probably be news of the birth, as Michelle is due any day now.
A FINAL NOTE:
As we were prayer walking on the river walk in New Orleans, we passed by a group of men who said they were from a Baptist church on the West Bank. Brian stopped to talk with them, and to encourage them in their witnessing, but they told him that they had a problem believing that we were ministering the Truth of the gospel since I had long hair. Of course they were referring to 1 Corinthians 11. Brian told them it merely says it is a shame for a man to have long hair, and not a sin. But they would receive none of what Brian was saying. The rest of us were too far away to hear the conversation, but we knew it was a heated one on the part of the Baptists.
After Brian parted ways with them and caught up with us, he explained what had taken place. We prayed for the brothers that their hearts would be opened. We walked about 100 feet and met a man who once had walked with the Lord, but had backslid. We encouraged him for quite a while, and ministered to him, and he prayed to be restored to the Father just like the prodigal son. While the brothers wanted to preach a gospel of prejudices and division, we were too caught up in the ministry of reconciliation to let it distract us from our mission, which was to bring souls into the Kingdom of God!
Had I been in error, it seems that a minister of God that was truly operating in the Love of God would have had a burden for seeing me restored to the Lord! UNFORTUNATELY, some people are too caught up in their works oriented self - righteousness to reflect the Love of God to others.
We in the Body of Christ really need to get focused on the Heart of Jesus: His Heart is for souls in His Kingdom.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we continue to minister Crosscountry For Jesus! We love you all… Lance, Michelle. Talitha, Feather, Elijah, Grace, Noah, & Abigail
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THE DOCTRINES OF JESUS CHRIST: WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE - THE TRADITIONS OF MEN, OR THE TEACHINGS OF JESUS?