What comes to your mind when you hear the word, “canvassing”? Knocking on doors? Talking to hundreds of upset strangers? Perhaps even terrifying dogs and angry, armed citizens? To hundreds of young people, “canvassing” stirs in the memory dozens of divine appointments, hungry souls, and overall amazing experiences.
Just one week prior to GYC Conference 2015 in Louisville, KY, over one hundred young people gathered in Pewee Valley, KY to participate in GYC Pre-Conference. Here are three testimonies from this outreach, featuring an amazing prayer-answering God and His willing servants!
“It was the end of an exhausting day. I had knocked on door after door only to discover that either people weren’t home or wouldn’t listen. It had come down to the last fifteen minutes and I had just 16 more doors to knock on. As I came up to the last door, I heard people inside and prayed that they would answer. A man opened the door and quickly referred me to his wife. She was so excited about the cookbook, but said that they didn’t have the money. I decided to show her Peace Above the Storm (Steps to Christ), and she was thrilled! Flipping through the book, she began reading the chapter titles: “How to Have a Clear Conscience” “Freedom from guilt.” “Oh,” she exclaimed “I really need this book!” I shared with her the donation range and she reiterated that she had no money. Sad that I couldn’t help, I left her with a free Happiness For Life (also Steps to Christ).
As soon as I left the house, I met up with another canvasser who had gotten donations from people who didn’t want books and was only too happy to let me give a few to this precious lady. We went back and knocked on the door. Long story short, she was so excited! She shared that she had just converted to Christianity three weeks ago. “When you left this other book,” she said, “I knew it was Jesus. Because I’ve been praying to Him every day and I know He answers prayer.” She became even more thrilled about the prospect of someone coming and studying the Bible with her. What an amazing last-door experience! I came back that night praising our Almighty God for His awe-inspiring goodness.”
“Apartments. The word sent chills down my spine. I was so scared. “We have to go inside too” I thought. First few doors, nothing. Then finally at the third door a lady answered and I saw her little son, so I handed her a Storytime and canvassed her on Storytime. She seemed really interested and asked what religion I was. That was the first time that I was able to explain what I believe without stumbling over my words. She said she only had a twenty, so I said, “Oh, here’s the second book in that set.” And handed her Prince of Peace and canvassed her on that. She said that she really would enjoy reading this to her children because she was “sort of Christian.” They didn’t go to church or anything, but she wanted to know more about God and she wanted her kids to grow up knowing about God. So I prayed with her and sold her both books.
I was really thankful that God put into my mind the words to say, because normally I’m not able to say what I believe without stuttering. But while I was at Pre-Conference I wanted to be able to give an answer, so I studied passages that prepared me to be able to do that. I was thoroughly blessed by the experience!”
“Follow your curb, comb to your T, cross over and work back until you meet somebody.” These were the instructions that were given to me as I jumped out of the van. “Okay! Sounds great,” I harped as ran to my first house praying for a divine appointment. Little did I know exactly how quickly this prayer would be answered. First house, no answer. Second house, quick rejection. “Okay Lord,” I prayed, “I know your promise is sure, I know that you will answer my prayer in your way, and in your time.” The third house that I went to was answered by a gentleman maybe in his 60’s. “Good afternoon, my name is Jerico….” as I went into my canvas. “I am not interested,” was his reply, and then he lowered his voice to a mere whisper as he began to explain his situation. His mother was dying of cancer, and and with six weeks left to live, she had just spent her last Christmas with her family. Tears began to flow as he related his story, and my heart went out to this gentleman. I asked if I could pray with him, and he agreed. After the prayer, I gave him a free Happiness for Life, and bade him farewell. As I headed for the next door, I was praising God for the wonderful divine appointment and answer to prayer.
However, there was another surprise in store as I knocked on the next door. The lady that answered the door was quite friendly, and after graciously listening to my canvass, she remarked, “I am not interested in these books, but do you mind me asking what religion you are?”
“No problem,” I replied, “I am a Seventh-Day Adventist Christian. Have you heard of us?”
“Actually not,” she exclaimed, “Can you explain to me what you believe?”
“Sure!” I answered. “We believe in…..” As I explained to her the gist of our beliefs as SDA’s she ask me to explain the Sabbath to her in a little bit more depth. After about a 10 minute bible study on the Sabbath, I came to a close and challenged her to further inquire about bible questions with the local SDA pastor, reassuring her that she would not be disappointed. I closed with prayer, and handed her an invitation to a prophecy seminar that would be happening in the area pretty soon. I left with my heart rejoicing because of God’s goodness and mercy that he had shown me.
However, who said that I was done, because at the very next house, the young man that I canvassed, was quite uninterested and reluctant. That is, until I canvassed him on the Great Controversy. His eyes widened, as he exclaimed, “I have that book, I bought a Great Controversy back in 1998! He even proceeded to describe the book to me as being the one that had a picture of the globe on it with all of the nations flags encircling it. “I have been praying for these missionaries that have been selling these books ever since I purchased mine 17 years ago. I have read the Great Controversy myself and loved it, and I want everyone to get this book too”
As you have read this article I pray that your heart is stirred, and that you too have a desire to join in the Lord’s work of taking the 3 Angels message to the entire world in this generation.