Pastor's Blog
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June 23, 2011, 10:46 AM

At any moment...



So in the past two weeks I've seen God do some crazy things. I was at children's camp last week (yes, I am almost recovered) and enjoying all the things that go with that camp (sweat, dust, camp food, kids throwing up into the pool, small showers) when I unexpectedly met God. Sounds silly I know, but sometimes in the midst of serving God we forget to realize just how big God is and all that He is in the process of doing. Last week He was in process of revealing Himself to a bunch of preteens. On the second night of camp, all the men got together and prayed before the services, and prayed specifically for the pastor that God would move in Him and that God would speak that night, and that children would recognize that and respond. So at the end of the service, the pastor gave an invitation, not an emotional pull but the simple fact that as sinners we are separated from God and the only bridge to God past our sins was Jesus. When he asked if any kids wanted to do that, 89 went forward. Oh, so did 1 adult. Seems he'd been in Afghanistan for 7 years as a contractor and had just decided to return home. He'd been going to church in Afghanistan, and that night he realized it was time for him to go forward even though it was children's camp. Imagine his surprise when he went forward to see his son had also gone forward and received Jesus. Six of our kids also made decisions that night...God is crazy big and powerful. And he wasn't done, over the next few nights a total of 116 people found forgiveness and redemption from our God. He is so good, so merciful, so loving, so amazing.

Last night I saw God being amazing again. there is a lady at our church who's been coming for the past few months. I know God has been wooing her because I watch her as I pray and see the Spirit just pulling at her heart. She's really become involved in the church, and has even been paired up with another lady to learn how to follow Jesus. She has shown a great desire to be baptized, and after church last night came up to me and asked if what she needed to do to be baptized. So we sat down at the back of the church and I explained that baptism was just a symbol of salvation and our desire to follow God, that before that can happen we have to trust in Jesus with all that we have and are. That we must acknowledge we are sinners and that that seperates us from God, and that the only thing that can wipe away our sins is Jesus' death on the cross. And if we will believe in our hearts and confess with our mouths that we need Him and his forgiveness, then by his death on the cross our sins are forgiven and we are given relationship with God, and that we also receive eternal life because He rose to life 3 days later. But we have to trust in Him alone to change us, to forgive us, to save us. I asked her if she had ever prayed for that, and she replied that she prayed all the time to see God's face. I told her that was not the same, that we can't just be intrigued by God or attracted to Him, but that we had to totally give ourselves over to Him. She was silent for quite some time and started crying, and then she looked at me and said, "It's just so scary." I told her it was. To bet your entire life, to put it all out there and trust in someone to heal and fix you is scary. To bet everything on someone you cannot see and trust Him to do what He promises is scary. But I also told her how God had never let me down, that through it all He had never left me, never let me down, never deserted me but that He had been good to His promises. We talked about how there is little to lose if you trust in Jesus, but everything to lose if you didn't trust in Him. At one point she smiled at me and said, "It'd be foolish not to trust in Him."

At this point I almost stopped, almost told her to think about this and when she was ready to make a decision to do so. But a conversation I once had at a conference struck with me. The speaker for this session on sharing Christ had told us that your friends expect you to share Jesus and give them an opportunity to respond to the Gospel. And that often because we don't want to pressure them we never push the point at all, and then they start to wonder. They wonder why you don't, because if it is as important as we say, then why wouldn't we bring it up and let them decide. They expect us to do it, and if we don't it makes them wonder how serious we are about it. This all flashed through my head after what she said, I decided to press a little more.

I looked at her and asked her why not now? I told her I knew God had been wooing her and pulling at her heart. I told her I even thought she really wanted to do it or she wouldn't have hung around as long as she had at the church. I asked her again, why not now. She sat and thought about it, still crying, and then looked me in the eyes and nodded her head and said, "I want to do it." So I told her there is no special prayer to pry, but if she needed help she could just repeat after me a prayer telling god what was on her heart. And then we prayed, and she started off fine, but by the end could barely speak past her tears.

So we're gonna baptize her on Sunday. Along with a friend who I've been praying for over a year to get saved who accepted Jesus a couple of weeks ago and who has been hungrily diving into the Word and is already growing a lot. And we're also going to baptize his step-son, who went forward that night at camp and who I got to counsel with that night. God is amazing.

Here's what really blows my mind, when God decides to work, He does. At camp, at church, wherever. At any moment it can go from a normal moment to a holy moment with God's presence there. A normal conversation can turn into a life altering one. And it depends not on us, not on anything we say or do, but on the great love and mercy of God as He calls and draws hearts to Himself. We just might get blessed and get to be there to watch God forgive sins, heal souls, and restore life right in front of us. And it could happen at any moment...are you ready when it happens to you? Who are you praying for it to happen to?

 



Comments

07-11-2011 at 12:01 PM
Keith Jones
I don't see other comments listed, but will dive right in...great blog, and it is always amazing to see God at work. Glad to hear He has been moving in your area. We see "showers of blessing" in the Georgia mountains, but are praying for an outpouring like you saw at children's camp...
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