The Lord’s Day, March 2, 2008

I’m completely exhausted, but I can’t imagine how I’ll ever go to sleep tonight. I can only pray that Yahweh will open eyes across the world to see Him working as I’ve been blessed to witness today.

Glenn and his boys arrived from Illinois last night, to begin looking for houses in this area, so our meeting this morning was packed with wisdom and insight from John, First John and First Timothy. The men were still going strong, encouraging, exhorting and discussing, when our lunch-time extras began to trickle in. Papa asked Glenn for his testimony, and from there, our guests began to share how the Lord had brought each of them to His mercy seat, repentant and believing that He had the power to save them. After listening to the others, Josh slowly opened up and began to pour out his story: how, as a boy of seven, he’d walked the aisle and made a profession of faith—and meant it. Really. But he’d never been given much truth to believe, simply told that Christians live a certain lifestyle, which he followed until his sister’s tragic death when he was twenty. “I hated God,” he earnestly insisted. “I was told that God protected Christians and nothing would hurt them. God had lied to me.” From there he turned his back on the Lord and lived in rebellion for seven years, spiraling deeper and deeper into depravity and death, enslaved to sin, forever trying to cover it over with momentary highs. “I got to the point where I looked at my addictions and said, ‘I’m not going to do this anymore! I don’t have to do this anymore!’ and they laughed in my face and said ‘Yes, you do.’” Terrified, Josh was determined to find the truth—but he wasn’t going to be any easy sell. When he started going to Wes and Audrey’s Bible study, he had no intention of letting anyone pull the wool over his eyes. Slowly, the sincerity of the believers drew him closer until he couldn’t stay away. It was a frightening weekend when he realized he’d overdosed on Meth and called Nathaniel and Bruce. Immediately they came to be with him, talking with him, forcing him to flush the rest of the drugs down the toilet, and quoting scripture to him. “I could have killed them,” he confided, “when they got between me and the door. They just kept saying scripture to me. I couldn’t flush the stuff. Then they made me say ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me’ and I dropped it in. Nathaniel flushed the toilet. Then Bruce started walking me to make me sweat. I didn’t die.” The next week, he was high again and Nathaniel simply told him he was coming over to spend the night. Josh just kept repeating, “I was terrified. I was on the edge of a cliff. All the things I’d been using to stay alive—I needed to let them go to God, but I was terrified that if I did, I’d fall over the cliff and He wouldn’t be real to save me after all.” In this depth of despair, he realized that he had two choices, die and be lost, or cast Himself on Jesus as the only possible hope. “I jumped off that cliff.” He and Nathaniel studied through half of the book of Romans as Josh came down of that dangerous high. Just about exactly a year ago. He’s been clean ever since. Doctor’s say it’s impossible to kick Meth. Can anyone echo “nothing is impossible with God”? I’ve known Josh about exactly a year. The change in him is miraculous—literally. “I should be dead,” he said over and over again. “I about died.” His words are no exaggeration. He should be dead. Instead, he has passed from death to life, through the divine intervention, the atoning sacrifice of Jesus and the power of His resurrection. To those searching for answers to the question of religion, the issue of God and the concept of eternity, God has offered proof in the metamorphosis of those at enmity with Him into those who love Him and serve Him because of the His hand in their life. I wish I could spell out Josh’s story, exactly as it poured from his heart and brought tears to our eyes. Later he felt foolish for sharing it. Well? Hasn’t God chosen the foolish of the world to shame the wise? The weak and despised things, the things that are nothing that He might make nothing the things that are? Only Yahweh can accomplish what has been done in Josh's life. As he's begun to say, "It's all about Jesus, isn't it?"

I couldn’t focus on anything the rest of the day.

Tonight, my heart is too full to even sort it out into four lines by four lines which could never even touch the beauty or magnitude of God’s power and His working in our lives. Tonight I fall silent and let His own Word speak for Himself—He does it so eloquently.

Not to us, O Yahweh, not to us,
but to Thy name give glory
Because of Thy lovingknindness, because of Thy truth.
Why should the nations say,
“Where, now, is their God?”
But our God is in the heavens;
He does whatever He pleases…
You who fear Yahweh, trust in Yahweh;
He is their help and their shield.
Yahweh has been mindful of us; He will bless us;
He will bless those who reverence Yahweh,
The small together with the great.
The heavens are the heavens of Yahweh
But the earth He has given to the sons of men.
The dead do not praise Yahweh,
Nor do any who go down into silence.
But as for us, we will bless Yahweh
From this time forth and forever!
Praise Yahweh!

--From Psalm 115

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