Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A missed opportunity

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16

Have you ever had God answer a prayer, only to realize several hours later that you missed it completely?

For three-plus years, I have been praying for God's light to shine on a friend of mine. It breaks my heart to see the darkness my friend lives in. The complete, utter hopelessness that comes with a life without Jesus. And the willingness my friend has to jump into anything (except faith in Jesus) that just might alleviate loneliness.

Over the years, my friend has been so anti-God that I have resisted pushing my faith. My friend knows where I stand, but I have yet to be able to put my faith in words. I have seen a few instances of a softening heart, but never a hint of my friend being interested in life-change.

For awhile, I have believed that I might never see the harvest. That God might be using me to plant seeds through kindness and friendship, rather than sharing the Gospel.

And then there was yesterday...

During a conversation involving my friend and a couple others, a perfect lead-in to share the Gospel shot out of my friend's mouth...but I missed it until lying in my bed last night.

The group was talking about our flawed healthcare system, when my friend put out a comment that went something like this: Maybe science will come up with a way for us to live forever...

Whoa. I KNOW how you can live forever, friend! But instead, I was thinking in mere mortal terms...I don't want to live forever in this body, I said. Rim shot.

What I wish I would have said: I already know I am going to live forever. My life is in the hands of my savior, Jesus Christ. He came to the world to save us from our sin. To cleanse us. To give us eternal life. And you can have eternal life, too, if only you would believe. Surrender your life. Die to yourself, in order to live. Jesus loves you my friend!

May God grant me forgiveness for missing an open opportunity. And may my friend not suffer eternal consequences for my lack of words. Amen.

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