“And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind …” – Colossians 1:21
Observantly he sat. Silently. He wore a heavy cardigan. In June. Walking past this elderly gentleman, I sensed the Holy Spirit’s nudging to speak. Kneeling down, I initiated conversation. And we were off. One sentence led to another, and eventually God opened the door for me to share the Gospel with this 89-year-old man named John. He spends his daytimes in an adult daycare center, but where will he spend eternity?
Surprisingly John echoed a prevalent modern day teaching: people need to decide on their own how to come to God. I didn’t expect this perspective from a man his age. Powerfully God gave me courage to kindly yet firmly reply, “No. Who are we to tell God how we can come to Him? Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Him” (John 14:6, my paraphrase). John looked at me … thoughtfully.
Crotchety but attentive, John listened. We carried on an intelligent discussion–at one point considering what it means to show Jesus’ love. He seemed to have no clue. In answer to my question about whether he had a relationship with God/whether he was saved, he replied that he attended church. Glaringly and grievously he appeared void of understanding what being a Christian entails: a personal relationship with God through the Lord Jesus Christ.
I still picture John peering at me with inquisitive eyes. I remain appreciative that he listened to my God-given words. I pray with hope because he agreed to read the Gospel of John. How fitting: his name is John. May God continue to speak powerfully–directly to his heart. Dear John. May God open his eyes to the truth and draw him to His Son, Jesus Christ (see John 6:44). Please join me in praying for John’s salvation. What a thrill it would be to meet up with him again … in heaven!
Going to church doesn’t make one a Christian. Belonging to a particular denomination doesn’t secure our eternal destiny. Neither our works nor our “goodness” can save us.
Only Jesus Christ.
“And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved.” – Acts 4:12
Dear friend, perhaps you share similarities of thought with my friend, dear John. Maybe you’ve been deceived into thinking God will accept you according to whatever way you choose. Please think again. God Almighty has already provided a way into relationship with Him. Salvation freely becomes yours by accepting His beloved Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Won’t you place your faith in Him today?