Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Hat Evangelism

Meet Hilda, she knows how to make the most of the hand-made hats we've been giving out in Mexico this year. She took the challenge given during the Sunday evening service at the church in San Vicente, Pray about who of your neighbors, friends, or family you could bless this week with a hat on “Kings’ Day”, Jan 6th. This day celebrates the Wise Men visiting baby Jesus and presenting him with their precious gifts. It’s the perfect time to give a little something. While giving the hat they were encouraged to invite the receiver to a special evangelistic service on the upcoming Saturday. One could see the wheels turning as church members carefully choose from the over 200 hats for very specific people, looking for just the right size, color and style. Often, expressing with glee, “this one is for ….. Hilda, who just got married and moved into her new neighborhood the month before and was ready to share God’s love. She took enough hats for the family next door.

On Tuesday, she arrived at our house all excited. Hilda explained how she visited the neighbors and told them how much God cared for them and she was delivering a special little gift from Him. The three little girls in the family were gleeful as they told her none of them had a warm hat. The Mom was curious about where the hats came from and Hilda told her that God knew of their need and was providing for them and invited them to the Saturday service. Mom expressed sadness that they had other plans, but would Hilda please come and teach them about Jesus. Hilda then asked me, “How do I teach them? What materials can I use?” “Please feel free to take whatever out of this box that would be helpful.” She, choose some Bibles and educational materials.

On Wednesday, Hilda told me how the hat challenge was just the nudge she needed to get the courage to share the “Good News” with her neighbor. What a wonderful bridge the hats were. I suggested she share during the evening church service about how she had used the hats and the fruit that was already coming from them. Well, that resulted in another 125 hats being picked out. Mind you, nobody was able to pick out a hat for themselves or their immediate family. These were specific for blessing others who did not know Christ yet. Even kids and youth swung by the hat table to make choices for their named person. Hilda was thrilled when I was able to present her with an illustrated children’s Bible as well as evangelistic coloring books that I designed over a decade ago. She lost no time in making the most of them.
Saturday morning an excited Hilda ran up to me to tell me how Friday night she had led her neighbor to the Lord. Yeah! Later in the day, Hilda introduced me to her neighbor and family who had changed plans to be able to be at the Evangelistic service. The three girls were proudly wearing their new hats.

During the next few days, other church members expressed gratitude for the “Hat Give Away” and how several of their receivers did come to the special service. So far there are at least three new families in the Kingdom as a direct result of that week’s outreach. Praise God. Thanks to all my hat makers.