Monday, June 14, 2010

Writing again

Well, after too long of a break I am going to tell some more stories here. After all, it isn't as if nothing much is going on. The Boss is moving and His Kingdom is expanding. It is a battle to be sure, there are victors and casualties. They deserve the honor of you knowing that the Father has been glorified through them.

I was gone for a couple of weeks for my second daughter, Goldberry's graduation. When I returned Legolas came up to me and ask if I had time to talk. I didn't but I couldn't have stopped him in his excitement if I tried. He told me that there was a 52 year old man in a village not far from Minas Tirith who had come to faith the week before. This is a man who was a strict Muslim. He had listened to what Legolas and one of his friends had had to say about Jesus years before and had rejected it. He had read some of the Bible they had given him but had not thought much more about it. One day last week as he was doing his daily prayer the Holy Spirit powerfully convicted him that what Legolas had said about Jesus was true. He got up, took a bucket of water and baptized himself. Then he went to the group meeting that Sunday and announced that he had come to faith! He has told all of his relatives that he is a Jesus follower and is encouraging them to do the same.

I like Legolas' response to the baptism. He told the new believer that it was a wonderful step of faith. Then he went on to invite the man to be baptized again before the Church as a witness to them. I was glad he didn't just say, 'Hey you did the baptism thing wrong!' He affirmed the man's faith while at the same time guiding him into deeper truth. This man will need strength to stand in the truth. He has two wives and will need God's wisdom to be able to deal honorably with both in a way that is a declaration of God's love. If he sorts it out I will for sure write a post on what he did and how God was glorified. In the meantime, there is a 52 year old former Muslim man proclaiming the good news in Gondor. God is still in the business of imparting faith in the most unlikely places and we are blessed to be witnesses of it.

9 comments:

John Alexander said...

Glad to see you're back online. I know things have gone crazy in Middle Earth lately; I've prayed for your safety in the turmoil, as well as the safety of those with whom you work.

Strider said...

Thanks John, Things have been crazy just north and just south of us. Pray for the perseverance of the saints in dark difficult places.

王周宏儒 said...

Where theres a will theres a way. ............................................................

David Atkins said...

I have been watching with great concern the events in Middle Earth. Glad to know that the battle is not just flesh and blood. Praying for wisdom, boldness, and opportunity for all involved.

Paul Burleson said...

Strider,

Great story.

I had a man come to faith years back who was literally on his way to California from Oklahoma where I was pastoring. He's stopped me for directions and I ended up giving him the directions to heaven.

He wanted me to baptize him and it was the middle of the night. I said OK and we went next door to the church building, turned the water on, and waited while talking for a short while.

We then went to the baptistry and the water had leaked out as fast as it came in creating a mess. He was literally in tears. I said "Look, I'll go ahead and do this but would ask you to get with a group as soon as you can in Callifornia and let them baptize you before all of them. Agreed? He said yes.

With water only 8-10 inches deep we "pretended" it was full. He said his testimony. [No one present but him and me] I said my words. I took him down. [Never got to the water.] He left happy and rejoicing. I left grateful baptism isn't part of the salvation experience as Paul the Apostle told the Corinthians. [Important for sure but non-salvific.]

Right to do? I don't have a clue. But it sure was a step of courage and devotion on his part and I believe made it easier for him to do it publically later.

Strider said...

Good story Paul, thanks for sharing it. 'Without faith it is impossible to please him.' I could say more, but I don't think I need to!

Dienekes said...

Strider,
A year ago, due to a change in jobs and other circumstances, I quit following the blogs I had enjoyed. A couple weeks ago, I picked back up following a few, and then I remembered yours.

I'm just writing to thank you and commend you on your service to the Lord. You and your family are blessing us as well with your perspective, and I really appreciate it. More than any other blog, I come away from reading yours uplifted and encouraged to follow the Lord more closely.

I will also tell you that my family and I have been called to cross-cultural missions overseas, and I believe we may be deploying within the next 6-8 months. In recent months my heart has been increasing for the Muslim world, and I just want you to know that if we do end up ministering among Muslims, I hope that my path and yours cross sometime, somewhere. Your heart and outlook as I discern from your writing seem to be ones with which I would have real kinship.

Anyway, thank you again. I hope my inadequate words will be a bit of encouragement to you.

Prayers out.

Dienekes

Strider said...

Thanks Dienekes! Those are encouraging words and may the Lord bless you as you step out in faith. It would be great to run into each other some time here in Middle Earth, if we do let's do lunch!

Anonymous said...

Strider,

I enjoyed this story tremendously and I wish that man good luck in figuring things out but more importantly Gods wisdom imparted to him. A pretty tricky situation for sure. I could say more but will not :) You and your family is such a blessing to me and my family. Don says to tell you hi :)

Love & Prayers, Angie :)