This week I had an interesting encounter at a book store. I had to travel to a Best Buy to repair my laptop. Once I finished there, I noticed a store called Books a Million next door. I had never been in one of those before, and I enjoy book stores. I wanted to find a book called Safely Home anyhow, so I decided to go inside. After I entered the store, I quickly found the “religious section.” There was one other man in the same area, and he was looking at Bibles. The man approached me and asked if I knew what a “New Living Translation” was. He told me he just went to church for the first time in a long time the Sunday before, and they informed him the church used a New Living translation. I told him today there are over 100 different versions of the Bible and the NLT was the version the church he visited was using. I strongly recommend a KJV version and told him several reasons why. He then told me he remembered going to church with his Grandmother and that was the Bible she used. He said he remembered it was a KJV. (Of course, at that time that was almost the only version available! Oh, how far we have come! Today we have more versions than ever, and more coming out every year, and look how well America is doing today!)
From there, I quickly turned the conversation to the gospel. Wow, was this man fruit ready to be picked! The store we where in had a café in it, and I asked him he would like to sit down and talk. He said yes. I went through the gospel and we talked for about an hour. Near the end, I explained if he would repent and put his faith in Jesus Christ, the Lord would save him. While I was talking, he stopped, without any prompting from me, and bowed his head and put his faith in the Lord Jesus. He then put his hands to his eyes and wiped away tears. I was rejoicing with him. He then told me how amazed he was we had met that day. His wife had left him the week before. His life was a mess and he was seeking for God. That was the reason he went to church the previous Sunday. (He visited an AOG church.) The church recommended that he go to a “Barnes and Noble” and buy a NLT. While going to the store, he changed his mind a decided to go to “Books a Million.” While there, he could not find this version. (He did not know to look for “NLT” on the Bible.) While still at the store, he called a man from the church to ask again which Bible to buy. When he called the man was not available, but his secretary said he would call him back shortly. He was waiting for this call back when I arrived in the store. He saw me and decided to ask me about the NLT. Right after he asked me, the phone rang and it was this man from the church. He basically told him he found someone to help him at the store.
Think about all that the Lord arranged for this Divine appointment. Had my laptop not needed repaired, I would have never met him. Had I not followed the leading of the Lord to go to Books a Million, we would not have met. Had he went to Barnes and Noble, we would not have met. Had he found the version of the Bible he was looking for, we would not have met. Had he gotten a hold of his friend on the phone before I arrived, we would not have met. I am so glad the Lord gave me the opportunity to give the Gospel to this man. What a privilege! The man (Ted) left the store with the Lord and the KJV Bible!
Wednesday, August 01, 2007
Last week, I preached my home church's annual family camp. This camp is always a highlight of the year. The week is filled with preaching, games, singing, testimonies, and fellowship. One man even created a human Foosball (SP?) game at camp. It was a blast. This last Sunday night I preached at Old Paths Baptist Church in Glenallen. This church is pastored by missionary Kent Lebouve. It was good to see him and his family again. (The picture to the left is from camp. One of the deacons from my home church, Chris Militech, and I were in a human wheel barrel race.)
My home/sending church has had a great blessing from the Lord this past week. The church has been packed in the current building for some time. My home church averages over 200 for all the services, and when the attendance hits 250, there is no space at all. The Lord has blessed with a new building (new to us). Another Baptist church in the area is selling us their facilities. The new building will be able to sit over 500. It is amazing to see how the Lord has worked all this out, so that my home church is able to purchase this property! It has been an exciting time to be back with my home church these last few weeks. Pastor Roach, my pastor, is thrilled at what the Lord is doing.
We will be leaving Alaska next Monday, heading to the lower 48. We are looking forward to seeing family. My Mom can not wait to see her grandchildren!