OUR JOURNEY AND THE POWER OF THE GOSPEL

Do you have a life verse?  A life verse is a verse of Scripture that more than any other defines your experience of the Lord.  My life verse is Romans 1:16.  “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes . . .”  I never ceased to be amazed at the extent and reach of the gospel.  I am also amazed at its enduring power long after words have been spoken.  One great illustration of this fact occurred in Mason.  There was a family who lived up our street.  The whole family needed Jesus.  God allowed us to reach the mother in the house and her teenaged daughter.  The father was not interested and would stare into space when I discussed the good news with him.  He had a religious background and seemed to be satisfied to be uninvolved and uncommitted.  The mother and daughter were baptized, but the father and teenage brother did not even come to see it happen.  I began to try to reach the teenage son.  I found out he was quite an actor so I went to a high school play in which he had a lead role.  Afterward I approached him and told him what an outstanding job he had done.  I also found out where he worked at a gas station and began to trade there and have brief conversations with him.  He knew my interest in him concerned Jesus, but he carefully avoided the discussion of his faith.  On Halloween one year our house was toilet papered.  For some time I did not know who had done it.  When I heard that it was this young man, I was so happy.  I knew I had gotten his attention.  We actually moved to our next assignment before I got to share with him thoroughly.

One day in Baird where we had moved to begin our fourth ministry, there was a knock at the door.  I opened the door and there stood that young man.  He had a young lady with him.  He said I want you to meet my bride to be and I want to tell you my story.  He entered our home and shared with me how he had trusted Christ and been baptized shortly after we had left Mason.  He also felt called to ministry or missions and was a student at Howard Payne.  He had made the choice because he knew that I was a graduate there.  It was clear that this young man with whom I had never been able to share the entire message of the gospel felt that I was his spiritual father nonetheless.  I learned that day that God can use our interest in someone to his glory even when we are very limited in what we are able to actually say.  We had a joyful visit.  It was amazing.  That young man actually lived in my grandmother’s house in Brownwood while at Howard Payne.  My father heard the story and gave him free rent just to watch the place while grandmother was in a nursing home.  Never underestimate the power of the gospel.

Dan Wooldridge

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