Hey Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
I hope your day was blessed and you had a sense of God’s presence. I had a good day on campus talking with students I knew, and Jerry prayed with me to receive Christ.
Jerry walked into the lounge outside the gym after seeming to have been playing some ball and worked up a sweat. He leaned on the end counter, off to one side of the base of the stairs. I was just walking down the stairs having talked to a guy for a while who’d prayed to receive Christ earlier this year. I asked Jerry if he wanted to do a survey. He asked how long it would take and then said ok. He was wearing bright blue basket ball shorts and matching leggings and a gray COD t-shirt. He had a rough top afro, shorter on the sides and some growth of beard, a long oval face and otherwise looked like a pretty average dude, but bigger and taller than me maybe 6’3″. When I asked him what he would say to God if he died and God asked him, “Why should I let you into Heaven?” he said, “Because of all the things I’ve done in life. I’m a reliable person. All the people around me, I’m their man, they trust in me.” He thought he had an 80-85% chance of going to Heaven. Going through the Gospel I explained God wanted him to believe in Him and live inside him but He had to take away his sin. He asked me, “What is sin?” I had just said, “The thing that ticks off your mom.” It’s extremely rare for someone to need a better definition than that, but I think he was looking to justify himself. “Anything that you do that damages yourself or others, your community or your family.” I clarified. He didn’t think he had done anything like that. “Did you ever tell a lie?” “Yeah,” he replied. “Lying is a sin. It hurts other people,” I replied. “You ever drive slowly in traffic on purpose? You stole time from the guy behind you.” Trying to justify lying he said. “I have told lies; I don’t lie all the time. What if the lie you tell does not hurt them? I lie to my friend, but he knows I am lying.” I said it would damage your relationship to lie. Then I continued with the Gospel since I did not want to get into an argument proving that lying was wrong. I think he knew it was or he would have let it go. Based on his original response, he had done other stuff. He was probably convicted about lying. I asked if he knew what Jesus had done to take away he sin. He had no idea. So I began to explain the sacrifice of his sins on the Cross, the blood that cleansed him and the righteousness of God that was to his credit. All the while throwing up prayers that God would teach him, as I was not sure he was understanding. Through each point I asked if he followed as I spoke and he said he did. I explained he needed to receive Jesus to believe in His name, so, that He was God, had died for his sins and rose from the dead. “I believe in Jesus,” he said. He had gone to church some with his parents growing up, a community Church he thought. At least he’d known something about Jesus before we spoke. So I quoted Ephesians 2:8,9 to him and explained how his good stuff would not fix his bad stuff. Finally I said there were two kinds of people in the world. I asked him if he wanted to trust in what Jesus had done to be forgiven for his sins so he could live inside him and give him the strength to live life, or if he thought something else. “Jesus inside,” he replied. So I said if he’d like to ask for forgiveness there was a prayer he could pray and I talked him through it asking if it was the desire of his heart. “Yeah,” he said. So I said if he wanted he could pray, not so I would hear but God would. I offered him the booklet “Oh you want me to pray [now]? He asked. “Yeah, just pretend I’m not even here.” He was cool with that, so I slid behind him on the counter and he prayed to receive Jesus. I gave him a Bible, putting his name and the date and “forgiven” in the front. He didn’t have anything to carry it in but said he’d like one if it wasn’t too big. It had a box and he put the booklet in it with the Bible study I gave him in with the Bible, after I explained the Christian life living by the Spirit’s power and showed him the “Where to Turn” section in the back marking it with the ribbon. He stood up to go work out. “Thanks for all your time,” I said. “No problem, no problem. God bless, ” he replied and headed up the stairs to workout.
So thanks for your prayers for the ministry and for evangelism today if you had a chance, God blessed and answered my prayers for Jerry.