As I think about the new school year, I think about how we as staff should be focused on what the Lord wants from us. The Lord wants us to give of ourselves in order for us to be more effective in the way we minister to the students. When we put Christ first in our lives, we learn how to live a more abundant life, a life filled with favour and blessing, and a life that is sacrificial to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. As I start my second year of ministry here at NBBI, there are things I want to do differently. Last year there were opportunities which I missed, times in which I should have stepped up but instead, stepped back. We should never let opportunities pass us by but always take advantage of the opportunities the Lord gives us.
In July our family made our summer trek to visit relatives and Church family in PEI. The main reason we went though, was to see my aunt, now in her 80s, who was dying of cancer. As far as I knew, there was no evidence of salvation in her life. Before I went to visit her I asked the Lord to give me an opportunity to share the Gospel. She sat with me at her kitchen table along with other relatives and halfway through our visit, she became tired and had to return to bed. As her door shut, I thought to myself, I will never see her again or get another chance to tell her of the love of Christ. In a bold attempt to gain access to her room, I asked her daughter if I could go in and pray with her. She said “yes”! I couldn’t believe my ears because they are very closed to the Gospel and they know where I stand as a believer. I went in, took my aunt’s hand and told her that I loved her very much and the God of heaven and earth had sent me that day to tell her that Jesus Christ came to this earth to die for sinners like me and He died for her too. I quoted 1 John 5:11-12, “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.” I told her I had found eternal life and I wanted to share it with her. As we talked more, I told her that Jesus is truly the way, John 14:6, “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.” I then prayed for her and her salvation. I wish I could tell you she accepted Jesus as Saviour but she didn’t, not while I was there. God knows the heart and He knows the time and hour one will be saved. I believe that and must keep my focus on things above and doing the will of my Father who is in heaven.
Is there someone in your life who needs to hear the truth; a co-worker, an acquaintance, a friend or a family member? If God is prompting you to share the Gospel with someone today, maybe you should. Eight years ago, I let an opportunity pass me by in giving my uncle the Gospel. He died two days later. I promised the Lord then that I would never allow that to happen again. Even in an uncomfortable situation, I needed to keep my focus on why the Lord sent me there. Be ready always! 1 Peter 3:15 says, “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.”
This post appears in the September 2011 Open Bible Bulletin. (click link to download the pdf version)