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What Story Will You Tell?

May 22, 2019 Leave a comment

Everyone Has a StoryAll of us have a story. It may be  your parenting story, your pregnancy story, your career story or the story of your life. A story I’ve always enjoyed hearing is the story of someone’s salvation—all the details surrounding how a person came to faith in Christ.

When we lived in Indiana back in the late 1980’s, the editor of our denomination’s weekly state paper, The Indiana Baptist, asked me to do a weekly column on a different individual each week and emphasize the details of their conversion experience. I decided to call the column “A Story To Tell.”

My husband’s job at that time was in Baptist missions, and we traveled to a different church in Indiana every week. We usually arrived at the church at least an hour before he was to preach, so I had time to seek out a friendly man or woman, get their permission to record our conversation, and then ask them to tell me their salvation experience. After the interview, I would write down our conversation in a story format.

While all the stories culminated when the person became a born-again Christian, each convert’s circumstances were unique. However, after several months of writing salvation stories,  the common thread I saw in each person’s experience was the way God used a friend, a neighbor, a relative, or even a stranger to draw the unsaved person to Christ.

An example of this was the young man who had not been brought up in the church, knew nothing of the Lord and was planning on becoming  a professional golfer. One evening, when he was about to enter a nightclub to enjoy several hours of partying, he noticed a group of people carrying picket signs. They were protesting what was going on inside the establishment.  One of the signs read “The wages of sin is death.”

For weeks the young man was haunted by these words, but he had no idea what they meant. However,  after he followed his girlfriend’s suggestion to talk to a pastor, he was led to the Lord, and his life was forever transformed.

I’m sure the man who had picketed the nightclub that night carrying a sign with the words from Romans 6:23 written on it, never realized his small gesture eventually made an eternal difference in someone’s life.

What difference will you make in someone’s salvation story?

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The Reason Behind This

February 19, 2015 Leave a comment

Walk 2Whenever I have the privilege of signing my book for someone, I do so with this inscription: “Walk in His Light.” I follow that with my name, and, of course, if the request comes from someone who wants a personal inscription, I begin my inscription with a personalized autograph.

However, from this point forward, I’ve decided to add a Scripture reference to my inscription of “Walk in His Light.” I’m doing so because some readers seem puzzled when they read that phrase, and I want to make it perfectly clear what I mean by pointing them to a verse summarizing the thought behind my words.

Although the Bible references God as Light throughout both the Old and New Testaments (Psalm 119:105; John 8:12), I’ve always loved 2 Corinthians 4:6 as a beautiful, yet understandable, verse which explains what happens when a person begins a personal relationship with the God of the Universe in the person of His son Jesus.

This reference will now appear below my signature. 2 Corinthians 4:6.

“For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.”

When I write “Walk in His Light,” I’m voicing a prayer that my reader will look in the face of Jesus, see the glory of God, cling to His provision for salvation in Christ, and  follow that Light wherever He may lead.

May you “Walk in His Light” today.

 

An Author with an Itsy Bitsy Platform

September 23, 2014 Leave a comment

Open BookOne of the most important concepts in the publishing industry today is the notion of “The Platform.” You may not know what that is, but think for a moment about people who’ve recently released a book—people like Hillary Clinton, Bill O’Reilly, and John Grisham. These authors have a built-in platform. The mere suggestion they might write yet another book has readers signed up to buy a copy before one word has been penned.

That’s a platform.

Publishers and literary agents will ask a potential author, “What’s your platform?” If you’re on the news regularly, have already written a best-selling book, have held  a prominent political office, or have even committed some serious offenses against humanity, the publication industry is  willing to sign you up immediately. Thus, platform is less about writing and more about having visibility and authority in the eyes of the world.

When the Son of God came to earth, he had no platform. He lived his life in relative obscurity in a small town that had a bad reputation. Yes, he gathered around himself a group of followers, but they were few in number and mostly considered the riff-raff of society—prostitutes, tax collectors, and a handful of rebels and fishermen.

Jesus, the very Author of Life,  had an itsy bitsy platform.

Yet, He did have something to say. In fact, He had a lot he wanted to tell people—about Himself, about His Father, and about the fact that He was the Word. His Word brought into existence everything that was, everything that is, and everything that will be. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” John 1:1.

The message he delivered received bad reviews from those in authority, from the people who had developed a platform of their own. At the earliest opportunity, they crucified Him, intending to obliterate his words.

But the words were important; the words were Life, the words brought Life. They were taken up by others who had no platform, but who faithfully wrote down what He had said, who delivered the message he could not deliver because he had no platform.

May all of us with itsy bitsy platforms never fail to deliver His Words. By doing  so, we  provide Him with a platform the world cannot ignore.

“How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation . . .” Isaiah 52:7.

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