2007 Monthly Letter
Partners in Ministry,
"For no human being will be justified in God's sight by
works of the law…" Romans 3:20
It was a communion Sunday. There were three worship services.
My sermon was on "The Place of Grace." At its end, many prayed
to receive God's Gift of Grace by accepting Jesus as their
personal Savior. Each decision would be confirmed by taking
the second service sermon, my eyes were drawn to a man wearing
a royal blue shirt. He was teary eyed. I knew the Spirit had
spoken to him. Following the service I sought to find him
to talk. He disappeared. He was not in the sanctuary, hallway,
or fellowship hall where everyone gathered for coffee. A lost
opportunity I reasoned.
returned to the sanctuary for the start of the third service.
Two missionaries began to share after the opening announcements.
Suddenly within me I sensed a voice saying, "Get up and
go to the fellowship hall." I began to argue silently
with it. "It would be rude to leave when these missionaries
were speaking. Everyone would see me go since I was sitting
in the front of the sanctuary. If I were in the back maybe
I could do it."
voice again stated, "Go." Somewhat sheepishly, I did.
When in the fellowship hall, I looked around at the people
there, thinking I would find the man "in the royal blue shirt."
He was not there. Neither was there any writing on the wall
as to what to do. So, I went to the coffee urn and got a swig's
worth of coffee.
near by was a man who looked at me and stated, "God really
spoke to me in a most significant way through you. I was one
of those who prayed to receive Jesus Christ as God's gift
of salvation. Prior to the sermon I have been trying to
earn God's favor and be right in His sight through all
the good things I have done. I recently returned from a mission
trip to Nicaragua and thought that surely my work would earn
me some merit with God.
Your sermon spoke right to my head and heart. In
my head I believed my works would make me right. In my heart
I came to believe that my receiving His way of righteousness,
His gift of Grace through Jesus Christ, was the only way for
me to become right. Like you asked, 'When does a gift become
a gift?' And my answer was, 'only when it is received.
So today, I received Jesus and now I know that I am finally
and forever right in God's sight."
I boldly asked this 69-year old man, a Viet Nam veteran fighter
pilot, and an instant friend of mine because he was an acrostic
user-a member of a ROMEO group (Retired Old Men Eating Out),
to share his new found truth during the sermon in the third
agreed, only if I would interview him. I did; he did; and
the Holy Spirit took over the rest of the service. Can you
imagine what happened when this well-known, long time member,
and elder revealed his newly found truth? Many others prayed
to receive God's gift of Grace because of it. Wow! Moral:
follow the leading of the Holy Spirit within you. See what
happens. You will probably be spiritually surprised and blessed!
the other hand, what if we don't follow the prompting….? What
if I hadn't….?
you for your enabling me to be a channel of the Holy Spirit's