It’s easy these days to get discouraged. Death is all around us, it seems, and we’ve been quarantined for a long time. All of us have past- and present-tense stories of God’s work, though, that are encouraging in even the darkest times. Here are some of those stories I’d love to hear more of – and I invite you to encourage other readers by telling your own stories in the comments section:
- Family and friends becoming believers after many years of prayer. We prayed for my dad for more than 30 years, and God radically changed him (see the story of his conversion here).
- Struggling churches brought to life again. The first church I pastored had 19 people in attendance the first Sunday (most who were related to each other . . .). Over the next two years, though, God did some amazing things as we saw person after person turn to Christ.
- God’s bringing spouses together. I sometimes forget the gracious miracle of God to use two church secretaries to introduce me to my wife. I’m undeserving of Pam’s love.
- Marriages restored. I’ve seen God not only repair battling marriages, but also restore marriages wounded deeply by adultery. That’s a God-level kind of forgiveness.
- Children praying honest, heart-level, completely trusting prayers. Their faith puts mine to shame as they simply talk to the God they love. Parents and grandparents, I pray you have such memories of your own families.
- Prodigal children come home. I have vivid memories of parents and grandparents weeping almost uncontrollably when their wayward kids turned toward home again. They make me want to “pray on” for wandering folks I love.
- Unreached people groups hearing the gospel for the first time. I’ve seen listeners’ eyes light up and their hearts pound when missionaries first share the story of Christ. The offer of forgiveness is incredibly inviting to a world caught in sin.
- Victory over temptation. We know the convicting agony of disobedience, but we also know—thank God—the overwhelming joy of obedience. An unhindered relationship with God is sweet indeed.
- Saints dying with assurance. Sure, it’s a sad time – but there’s often a quiet peace that only humbles us. We believers don’t grieve like those who have no hope (1 Thess 4:13).
- Meeting Christ. God made me His child 46 years ago. I’ve taken my salvation for granted too many times, but I’m reminded today of His grace. In fact, I invite you to hear God’s story of grace in my life at this link.
Would you take time to encourage us with a story today?