Be careful what you pray for..... You just might get it! I've been asking God to give me more courage and boldness to share the Gospel. Having lived in smaller towns for most of my life, it seemed so much easier to share my faith there than here. But having moving to a much larger city, it seems the people here are ..... shall we say.... a little more "stand-off-ish"? Many people don't want to give you the time of day, especially when they find out you're one of those religious "fanatics".
Well, let me go on the record right now..... As a matter of fact, I AM one of those religious fanatics. That's a label I wear proudly. The first three letters of the word "fanatic" are f-a-n. I'm a fan of Jesus..... Who's your hero? It's been well said that a "fanatic" is someone who loves Jesus more than YOU do.
But.... I digress.
I was speaking of how I've been asking the Lord for more courage and boldness to share my faith with others. God has been giving me some unique ways here lately. Today was no exception.
I had to stop by Walgreens here in Hope Mills to get a prescription filled. As I was walking back out to my car, I saw a retainer laying on the ground. Having had braces before, I know that retainers are important and also expensive. I knew the owner would be looking for this, so I grapped a napkin from my car and wrapped it up and carried it back inside. I gave it to one of the ladies behind the desk and told them what was going on.
Then I walked back out to my car. As I was sitting there getting buckled in, I noticed a young man in his 20's walking around the parking lot. He walked among all the vehicles in the parking lot, which made me a little uneasy. It looked for all the world like he was "casing" the cars, trying to select one to break into.
Then, he got down on his hands and knees and started crawling around and looking under cars and trucks. The light bulb clicked on, and I quickly rolled down my window and asked him, "Are you looking for a retainer?"
At first he didn't understand me, but then I asked again and his eyes widened in dis-belief. When I told him I had found a retainer and given it to the people inside, a great smile came over his face. He hurried inside and promptly came out with the lost retainer.
As he approached my car, I rolled down my window once again. He thanked me for helping him locate his retainer.
Then God gave me what I asked for. Holy Boldness.
"Do you mind if I ask you a question?", I asked.
He said he didn't mind. I asked if he was looking for God as hard as he was looking for his retainer. He really didn't know how to respond to my question. As I shared with him about how we need God and a personal relationship with His Son, Jesus, I shared the verse in Jeremiah 29:13 that says... "...and you shall seek me and find me when you shall search for me with all your heart." I assured Him that God loved Him and wanted to have a personal relationship with him. The young man told me he had been going to a church for awhile, but that he had stopped attending because "he just got tired of it". When I asked him if he knew he was saved and headed to Heaven when he died, he couldn't give me an answer that was Biblical. It was more or less a "works" answer. He told me all the stuff he was doing, and even some of the stuff he wasn't doing.
At the risk of offending this young man, I applied the boldness given to me and lovingly explained to him that salvation isn't spelled "D-O", but rather it's spelled "D-O-N-E". It's not what we can do for GOD, but rather what God can do for US! I gave him a CD called "The Invitation" by Rick Warren, and asked him to listen to it. I also invited him to ALBC this coming Sunday. He seemed genuinely interested in our 11AM Contemporary Service.
I pray that he will come and experience the living Lord Jesus.
I pray that he will soon become my brother in Christ.
I pray that God will give me boldness every day to stop me in my tracks from doing good things, and help me focus on the BEST things!.......(sharing Jesus with a lost and dying world)!
Using a retainer to help me share the Gospel with a young man. That's a first, Lord! I pray it won't be my last!