I have been reading the tributes to Luis Palau, who died this week, and I share gratitude for this gifted man of God whose evangelism touched the world. Christianity Today Weekly focused a series of articles reflecting on his remarkable ministry. As one of Billy Graham's prominent successors he preached to millions in more than 80 countries leading many to make personal faith commitments to Christ. His world influence was spelt out by several big names who remembered him with affection and gratitude.
A memory flashed into my mind from the 90's from the heady days when I shared in Spring Harvest's ministry. On this occasion a 'Pastor's Stream' with parallel meetings had been organized to focus on the needs of those in ministry. This particular day had two consecutive sessions. I was invited to lead the second one on 'Coping with pressures in ministry'. I cannot remember the exact title for the previous session but it was about relationships and it included the word 'sex'.
And guess who was speaking? Luis Palau. I arrived from another commitment just as he was finishing his session, which held the packed tent enthralled (as you can imagine) There was a short break before I took over. It was the first time I had met him face-to-face We greeted each other and I asked how his session had gone (as you do!) His reply was unforgettable and went something like this. 'Well, I don't know anything about the subject but I managed to speak for one and a half hours!' I roared with laughter. What an extraordinarily disarming thing to say! Warmth, humour and self-depreciation were all trademarks of this man and in one sentence he showed it.
It was just a passing moment but it revealed much!