It really is all about God. We can kid ourselves to think that we have something to do with it. But every once in a while God gives us a reminder. Last night in cell group God gave us an example of that.
It’s not uncommon to have visitors, but last night’s visitor was uncommon. We’ll call him “Allan.” Allan is a successful business man in the city, a man that owns several businesses and hotels. We had been inviting him to our cell group, and last Christmas he came to a get-together that we had, but never to a cell group. Last night, at 7:30, out of the blue he shows up at our house with his son. We were thrilled to have him, but little did we know what God was really up to.
The key scripture of the night’s lesson was from Isaiah 60:2-5.
Darkness as black as night covers all the nations of the earth,
but the glory of the Lord rises and appears over you.
All nations will come to your light;
mighty kings will come to see your radiance.
Look and see, for everyone is coming home!
Your sons are coming form distant lands;
Your little daughters will be carried home.Your eyes will shine,
and your heart will thrill with joy,
for merchants from all over the world will come to you.
They will bring you the wealth of many nations.
Talking about Jerusalem, it makes for a wonderful comparison of what happens when someone is chosen by God, filled with His glory! People — even people with authority — will come from far off places to learn from you, to hear from you.
Before I knew it, Allan was speaking, saying “I am proof of this.” He goes on to tell us about how his life and marriage went from bad to worse. Even though his business was going well, his family life was in awful shape. He bought the newest, nicest truck in town. No happiness. He had been seeking it in other women, and had the phone numbers to prove it. No happiness. He felt sick, oppressed. He needed to take several sleeping pills to sleep at night, and even then, he wouldn’t sleep until after 6 am. He was wasted, spent, exhausted.
It all came to a head last Thursday when he had a fight with his wife. A big one. He had hit bottom, and he realized only God could bring him out of a valley so deep. His young son was like an angel of God to him, telling him what no one else had the courage to say: “Dad, go to church — you need Jesus!” On Sunday he went to church, and on Monday he went to another church service, where he was prayed for and reconciled with God.
Since then God has been doing miracle upon miracle in his life. He can sleep again. He has peace. He is preparing a place in his new home for baptizing people! He is a new man with hope for his marriage and the desire to work it out.
God used Allan’s testimony to speak into his life of another new member who is passing through rough times in his marriage as well. And now he has a desire to fix his broken marriage! People didn’t leave cell group until 10 PM because it was such a wonderful time.
Be praying for “Allan,” because he’s at a critical stage, still needing to reconcile with his wife and family. Be praying for our other cell group members who were greatly impacted — God uses situations like these to bring many to the Kingdom and reconcile many others who have strayed away from the Truth. Thank you so much for your partnership and prayers, as we are in the awesome ministry of reconciliation.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. II Cor 5:17-21