“In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace,which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ” Ephesians 1:7-9
As I was wrapping up a conversation regarding the gospel on Mill Avenue, I noticed a familiar face out of the corner of my eye. It was a man whom David and I had spoken to weeks ago. When we had spoken to him, he described himself as being “in the lowest low,” of his life. He expressed a lot of sorrow for his life of poor choices. He called himself “undeserving and too bad for God.” We were able to share with him that we are of course undeserving of Christ’s sacrifice for us. However, while we were yet sinners, Christ willingly died for us!(Romans 5:6-8) We shared with him that while Jesus was mocked on the cross he prayed to God, “Forgive them Father!”(Luke 23:34) The man we spoke with understood the bad news: That he had fallen short of God’s glory and was deserving of Hell.(Romans 3:23) However, he didn’t believe that their was any way he could be redeemed. He feared Hell and believed their was truly no way out. You can imagine how depressing that mid set might make someone! He had also just recently lost custody of his beloved 14 year old daughter. He expressed that he would never see her again. He explained the circumstance to me and it seemed as though legally, it would be possible for him to see her. I asked if I could pray that he would be reunited with his daughter. He welcomed the prayer but considered it pretty useless, because he just didn’t see it as plausible.
All this to say when I saw this man for the second time this past Friday he looked like a new man. ” EMILY!” He shouted excitedly when he noticed me. He actually made eye contact with me as he approached me. The last time we spoke with him, he was so depressed he couldn’t even make eye contact nor hold his head up rightly. “Guess who I just saw?” He quizzed me. “Your daughter?” I asked him. ” YES!” He said with a smile from ear to hear. He went on to tell me that he had come to Mill Avenue tonight to speak with David or I. However, he couldn’t remember either of our names. He wanted to try and find us, so he took our advice and prayed. He prayed that he would remember one of our names, in order to ask someone on Mill Avenue where to find us. None the less, no names were coming to mind. All he could think of was his mother and law for some reason. Random? Not so much, his mother in laws name is Emily! A light bulb went off as he prayed ” Oh my goodness, her name was Emily too!” He realized.
He wanted to find us to share with the story of seeing his daughter. That day he had spent several hours with his daughter, and for the first time in her life she began to ask him questions about Jesus and the Bible. And for the first time in his life as a Father, he found himself at a loss for answers. He asked if he could sit down with me and “take some notes” haha. He asked me various questions from the Bible and recorded it in a notebook, to bring to his daughter. After an hour conversation with me, and another hour of listening to the guys preach he walked away joyfully, promising to come back soon(hopefully with his daughter!) As he walked off I told him that I did see a lot of change in him,yet I wondered where he stood personally, with regarding Jesus. “Oh I believe!!!!! But, I do have many more questions to ask you next week.” He said. Can’t wait!
Later in the evening, we had the chance to speak to a group of people from Australia. The group of five were all tied by similar interests but
differed immensely when it came to religious beliefs and practices for that matter. Ironically enough, through one simple conversation with us they each realized how different they perceptions were from their closest friends. ” Really? You seriously believe that?” One gentleman asked his friend of whom he had known for 10 years. After we shared the message of the gospel with them, most of them were not really having it. They agreed we made some relevant and valid points but were not sure if they were “sold.” However, as they walked off they continued to have a conversation regarding beliefs. One of the young ladies read a gospel tract we gave her to the group aloud. My hope is that their realization of vast differences in opinion stuck up some interesting conversations. They seemed like a very intellectual bunch; the type of group that might enjoy sitting down for hours discussing various topics. Hopefully they remember our discussion regarding Christ and debate the truth in that amongst themselves.
Christy, Breanne, Jonathan and Walter all had the opportunity to exchange contact with individuals after sharing the gospel with them. Three of them are expected to attend a church service or a bible study with us within this next week:)