2006 Monthly Letter
have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in
the truth."3 John 4
was last Sunday morning, October 29th, 2006, the day of the
seasonal time change. But the Holy Spirit had some other "time
changes" in mind.
was preaching on GRACE as God's Righteousness
At Christ's Expense. The minister of
music had carefully punctuated the worship with grace-laced
songs. One I had never heard referred to surrendering to God's
expounding on Romans 3:21-26, and in particular the phrase
"We are justified by His Grace as a gift" a few "grace"
stories were told, and "an opportunity for people to respond
to Christ's call" was given. With everyone's head bowed
and eyes closed, I led the congre-gation in a prayer to receive
by faith Jesus, the gift of God's Grace.
an outward sign of those who silently prayed with me, I asked
each to raise both their hands as one does when surrendering.
When they had done so, I requested the congregation to keep
their heads bowed and eyes closed but each whose hands were
raised to now raise their heads, open their eyes, and to do
so until I had individually acknowledged them. Over 40
a closing prayer of thanksgiving, the congregation enthusiastically
sang, My Hope is Built on Nothing Less Than Jesus' Blood
and Righteousness. The benediction was said and the pastor
and I walked down the aisle to the back of the sanctuary.
An elderly gentleman quickly approached me with his reddened
face absolutely glowing!
He placed both hands on my shoulders and said, "This is
the most wonderful day in my all my life in this church. A
moment ago during the prayer, my 64 year-old son, was one
of those who raised his hands! He surrendered his life to
Jesus. I can't tell you how many years I have prayed for this
day to happen!"
response I said, "Sir, may I ask how old you are?"
He replied, "Ninety." I said, "God has graciously
blessed you today. He has answered your long-time prayers
AND allowed your eyes to see the wonders of the working of
the Holy Spirit!" "Yes!" He said, "He has!"
is one more question I have to ask you", I continued.
"How did you see your son raise his hands when everyone's
eyes were supposed to be closed?" A big grin swept
across his face as he replied, "I confess, I peeked!"
We both let out a hardy laugh, hugged, and rejoiced in the
the pastor was with me, he overheard our conversation. He,
too, joined us in the celebration of this good news. Later
in his office, he told me that many in the church were praying
for this 64 year-old man. This was indeed a "major breakthrough."
After the father had been in touch with his son, the pastor
was going to immediately contact this man to help him grow
in his newly found faith in Jesus Christ.
occurred at the end of a full weekend for me. I was weary.
But the Lord used these few sentences from this joyful father
to revive me! Thank you for your part in helping a father's
elongated time of prayer to be answered! There is joy in Heaven
and in a praying father's heart in Indiana!