The Guy on the Bench

Some of you will remember the story I shared a couple of years ago of “The Guy on the Bench“.

Well, I had continued meeting with him pretty regularly for a year and a half after the events of that story. While he showed a lot of interest in reading the Bible together, and he had a lot of really good questions, he never seemed to show much interest in actually becoming a follower of Jesus.

Whenever people would ask him about what he believed, he would always say “I don’t accept any religion; I don’t believe in any of that stuff”. However, whenever we would meet together, talk together, and read scripture together, it always seemed pretty clear to me that Holy Spirit was speaking to him and working in his heart… But it never seemed to result in any fruit or change in his life. We’ve since both moved to different cities, and largely lost contact with each other.

I was praying last week, asking Jesus about this stuff. I asked, “Lord, did I waste my time with that guy? I spent so many hours with him, but didn’t really see any fruit from any of it. What gives with that?” I didn’t get an answer from Holy Spirit about that question…but this past Tuesday, I got a message from my friend. It said, “Hey, I have some news I want to tell you. I gave my life to Jesus 2 weeks ago. I realized that my heart is only hungry for and only filled by Jesus. Thank you so much for taking so much time to read the Bible with me, and to answer all my questions. My life is completely different now because of you. Thank you so much!”

I almost cried seeing that message. So many hours talking with and praying for my friend…and the Lord bore fruit in his heart! But I guess that makes sense…Isaiah 55:10-11 says:

As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish…so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

Turns out God’s Word is true, and He knows what He’s doing better than I do! Go figure!

Please continue to pray for my friend. He is back living with his family. They’re very religious (his father is a leader of a mosque), and he’s scared to share with them that he’s now given his life to Jesus. He’s got a challenging road ahead of him. But Jesus has been faithful this far, and will continue to be!

Please Note: For the sake of security the identity of the Global Worker(s) and exact geographical locations have been omitted from the article.