Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Heaven Rejoices!

"I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent."- Luke 15:7

I heard from one of my friends in Maryland that JS is now a Christian! I have prayed for him for years. He was one of the teenage guys who used to hang out at Tom's house. Like Mike, he got very involved in drugs and his life spiralled downward. He has been married, divorced, in and out of rehab several times, and now at age 26 he is back at his parents' house. A few weeks ago he saw that he would die if he continued down the same path so he asked his father to pray for him. His father asked him what to pray and JS said,"I need God!" At that point he knew that God had made him a new man. God gave him faith and he really believed that Jesus is the only way to a relationship with God and eternal life. JS has been free from drugs, and is now praying, studying the Bible, and sharing in fellowship with Christians. Everyone who knows him is amazed with the change and the very visible love, joy, and peace!

There is such a beauty in God's work to change a human heart. John G. Paton, missionary to Vanuatu in the 1800s, described this well:

"At the moment I put the bread and wine into those dark hands, once stained with the blood of cannibalism, now stretched out to receive and partake the emblems and seals of the Redeemer's love, I had a foretaste of the joy of glory that well nigh broke my heart to pieces. I shall never taste a deeper bliss, till I gaze on the glorified face of Jesus himself."

In the words of Charles Wesley, this is what Jesus Christ did:

Mild He lays his glory by,
Born that man no more may die;
Born to raise the sons of earth;
Born to give them second birth.

Jesus has raised JS, the son of earth, and given him second birth!