Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Deanna holding our new nephew, Matthew Stephen Tucker.
I got a phone call a couple of nights ago from a friend. I did not get it returned until yesterday. She began to share a story with me that is hard to hear.
A friend of hers came over and asked if they could go share Christ with a friend of his. She asked where he lived and the young man said, "I don't know but the Holy Spirit will guide us."
Thinking he was joking, she got into the car. The young man drove purposefully to a home. She was convinced with how direct a route they took, that he in fact knew where to go.
He went up to the door and knocked. She saw a face she recognized appear from behind the door. They both went into the home, telling him they were there to share 'good news' with him.
He offered to provide lunch, which they graciously accepted.
Somewhere during the meal, things took an unexpected turn. My friend rose from her chair just as the man with whom they were visiting kicked her chair and sent it flying across the room and into the wall. The man came at her, thrusting his knee into her mid-section. The pain raced through her body. As she attempted to react, he pinned her against the wall and pulled out a knife.
He drew it across her body where it parted the skin but did not draw blood. Then with the knife pressed against her stomach with just enough pressure not to penetrate, he asked, "Are you a Christian?"
Her mind raced. They had been having a sandwich and calm conversation and suddenly he flew into this rage. She struggled to understand. Her thoughts transported forward to the sermon she had to deliver next week for her seminary. The topic? Are you ashamed of the Gospel?
She felt the knife pressing against her as she drew breath, perhaps for the last time, to answer him.
She proceeded to tell him that in fact she was, and that was the 'good news' they were there to share with him. She fully expected to die. She contemplated saying she wasn't a believer. She wondered why her friend who got up from his chair, stood motionless. Then she realized that if he moved towards them, her end may come more quickly. She shared the Gospel with her attacker while violently being held against the wall.
Suddenly, he released her and walked over to the refrigerator and asked if they wanted ice cream.
Her mind was reeling. Her abdomen was throbbing. What had just happened? Why had she asked the Lord for a good sermon illustration for her upcoming message? She needed to finish sharing with him, but feared a reprisal.
She stood near the door and asked him if he would like to give his heart to Christ. She was ready to flee at the slightest hint of his return.
Then, as if being released from a demonic possession (ya think?) he said he did want Jesus as his Lord. He gave his heart to Christ in the ensuing moments.
He pressed them for how they knew he was in trouble and how they found where he lived. He could not understand how they knew that his life was in danger (from himself) as he had been contemplating the satanic church that was not bringing him the joy and peace he expected. He stood in their presence quoting a significant portion of Scripture. They listened in disbelief.
Somewhere, amid discussion of all of this, they parted company realizing that the Holy Spirit had led them to his address they had no resources to find. He had protected my friend when her friend could not (even though he had told her he was coming for her protection). They left realizing they had just experienced the power of God in fullness.
Realizing, as she recounted her story for me, how close to death she was, I tried to encourage her for remaining faithful. Clearly, the Lord was her direction and her protection. Because of her obedient heart, she walks in His tremendous power!
Am I ashamed of His Gospel? Are you? She wasn't.
What are you going to do with your day?


At 12:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I went to the dentist for a cleaning and checkup today. WOW Praise God for His Guidance, Protection, and your friend's courageous conviction.
Mark \O/

At 2:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a powerful message!!! AMEN

At 9:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's my girl!!! My airport buddy!!! I love you and mom, Dad. Happy Early Birthday to both of you!

At 9:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW! Scary, but praise God!

(hmm... I know someone named Stephen Tucker. Relation? Not sure...)



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