“The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.” (Psalms 119:130)
When Mark and I arrived in the city of Lages, we didn’t know a single person, we just knew that God had told us to move there. The city had 180,000 people and no Independent Baptist Church, however there were and still are a myriad of other churches, cults and around 200 Spiritist centers.
We began visiting around the house we had rented and over the course of time we were able to meet people and make friends. We were always asked why we had moved to this city in the middle of the mountains at the bottom of the world instead of living in our home country. Many people were skeptical of our intentions but eventually we built some relationships.
One day we were invited to have prayer with the family of a lady who was in the hospital dying from complications with Lupus. Mark prayed with a group of the lady’s friends and family but sadly, she passed away that night. We didn’t know if they would get superstitious about the fact she had died after he prayed, but thankfully we were invited back to have prayer with them as they mourned. This time of prayer opened a door for us to start a Bible study in the home of a widow lady named Delilah.
Delilah’s husband had been murdered by her nephew and though a few years had already passed, the tragic loss was still raw and very painful for the entire family. But as a devout Catholic, she sought for comfort in her religion, prayers and the Bible. Once she met my husband through the prayer time, she opened her home to us to return and read the Scripture together with her and her family and friends. She would make hot Brazilin coffee, set out chairs in her living room and have her daughter make snacks. We would sing hymns, share prayer requests and Mark would teach about the importance of God’s Word.
After a month of these weekly studies, Mark had established the fact that God’s Word was the only authority and we could (or should) trust what It said. The study had grown over the weeks and people would sit intently listening as Mark would describe what the Word said about God, His holiness and His love for ALL of mankind. It was not long before he explained what our sin had done to separate us from God and the requirements for that sin. I will never forget what Delilah’s daughter in law asked as my husband explained the first part of Romans 3:23 and the wages of sin. She had been sitting nervously biting at her nails each week up to this point and in desperation at the thought of dying in her sins, she looked up with wide eyes and asked,
”But Pastor, what can redeem us from this?”
The whole room looked up from their Bibles and anxiously awaited the answer. I watched my husband smile and tears began forming behind my eyes as I knew that LIGHT had just made enterance into the thoughts and hearts of the people present. Mark told everyone to look back down at the next couple of verses:
“Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;” (Romans 3:24-25)
And then he took them to Ephesians 1:
“In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;” (Ephesians 1:7)
He went on to explain the gift of God, Jesus Christ, and how salvation and forgiveness was offered freely to anyone that chose to believe and place their trust in Him. That night we saw the entire household pray and ask God to save them.
Now, I ask you: Did the words of Mark and Sheri cause these people to fall under conviction? Did the actions of Mark and Sheri penetrate the hearts of these folks and make them see their need of a Savior?
Your answer should be a resounding NO.
The Bible, God’s Perfect and Holy Word illuminated the darkness in the minds and hearts of everyone present that night and they were given understanding by God’s sweet Holy Spirit because THAT is how much He cares for every living human being right this very second. He is not willing that ANY should perish! (2 Peter 3:9)
If God is that concerned with saving the lost, don’t you think He also is JUST as concerned with you, His child? Don’t you think He offers you freely, each and every single day, LIGHT to illuminate your darkness as you live your life here on earth?
Don’t stop reading His Word.
Quit stumbling in the dark!
Dwell in God. He is there waiting on you in the pages of that Book we call the Bible.
Until Next Time, Lord willing,