Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Want Adventure?

"The Holy Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and walk along beside the carriage.”  Acts 8:29

Do you feel like adventure is missing in your Christian life? Try sharing the gospel with Muslims. I guarantee any boredom which has settled in you will disappear! The book of Acts inspires me to enter into the adventure the Christian life is meant to have.

We were chatting in a Muslim home recently when my eyes were drawn to a young man’s wrist band.  I went over and sat beside him. There was a white cloth band, then a separate band of three colors: black, red, and green.  That’s strange, I thought. It looked just like the colors of the wordless book which depicts the gospel message through the symbolism of colors. I asked the young man, “Where did you get your wrist band from?” “The white band came from visiting Imam Reza’s shrine in Mashad. I haven’t taken it off for a year. It brings good luck. My friend gave me the other band. They are the colors of the Afghan flag,” he answered. Oh…. “I know another story about those same colors,” I told him. He wanted to know what the story was so I explained the spiritual symbolism from the black, red, white, and green colors. He listened attentively. We talked at length about the red color symbolizing the blood of Jesus which is the only way our sins could be forgiven and our hearts become clean.  

 Adventure is experienced when I am not afraid to make Jesus Christ known. If you would hear me witness you’d be shocked to discover how imperfect my delivery is, and how it is usually left incomplete and often disjointed. Language barriers limit me at times. I often feel like a failure in witnessing. That used to bother me considerably years ago but not very much anymore because now I know that the Spirit does the real job.  He’s not looking for perfect or expert witnesses.

I was on the phone long distance with Amal, a new believer, when she said, “Joy, my husband wants to talk with you.” He got on the phone and said in his rough and tough way, “Joy, you never pray for me. You always just pray for my wife. Why don’t you pray for me?” “Well, Ahmed, that’s because you have never asked me to pray for you. What would you like me to pray for?” I inquired. He mentioned some general non-risky things and then I asked how his certain physical ailment was doing these days. “It is something that will never go away. It’s pretty bad,” he lamented. So, I told him, “I will pray about that. I pray in the name of Jesus because there is power in His name.”

 Adventure is experienced when I am not afraid to pray for big things for our Muslim and MBB friends. The book of Acts is all about opening the mouth fearlessly to make Jesus known, and praying for big, seemingly impossible things.  Like Philip in Acts, the Spirit may simply say to me: “Go over and walk along beside the carriage(or the man with the wrist band).”  I obey and then an adventure unfolds.

Dear Heavenly Father, I’m psyched for another year of adventure with You!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.