Ploughing for God
More than 200,000 people visited the three-day National Ploughing Championship in Athy, Co. Kildare, and this presented a wonderful gospel opportunity.
According to Matt Tuttlebee, member of the southern region committee of the Association of Baptist Churches in Ireland, the 80-year-old competition also played host to more than 1100 trade exhibitions.
He said, ‘Deep in the middle of this village was the Baptist Churches of Ireland’s marquee, conveniently situated beside an ice-cream van and opposite an Irish-speaking adventure sports outfit’.
The marquee was manned by a team of volunteers — leaders from various Baptist churches and a team from Operation Mobilisation — offering refreshments and the gospel to ‘a constant flow of people’.
Mr Tuttlebee said, ‘What struck me was an increased openness to the gospel and the claims of Jesus. Every power structure of Irish society has faltered and all but collapsed, but the Word of the Lord remains’.
He said large quantities of literature were distributed, based on farming themes, adding, ‘Forging gospel furrows is a lot like horse-drawn ploughing, without the horses. It takes skill, patience and persistence in turning over the soil in preparation for sowing the seed and watering it. Please pray the Lord of the harvest would bring fruit from the work of the plough’.
Edited from an Association of Baptist Churches in Ireland magazine article