"Or imagine a woman who has ten coins and loses one. Won't she light a lamp and scour the house, looking in every nook and cranny until she finds it? 9 And when she finds it you can be sure she'll call her friends and neighbors: "Celebrate with me! I found my lost coin!' 10 Count on it--that's the kind of party God's angels throw every time one lost soul turns to God." Luke 15: 8 - 10 (Message)
I will never forget the day that Ryan and I were riding down the road in the "Swagger Wagon," aka minivan, and we were discussing my nephew's upcoming baptism. Ryan was four at the time and had many questions (not unusual) about Jesus, baptism, God, etc. His main question was, "Can I be bap-i-tized?" I explained to him that baptism was an outward sign of an inward decision. That baptism followed accepting Christ into your heart as your Savior and Lord. He waited a few minutes. And then I heard him say, "God...Jesus...both of you guys...would you come into my heart?" "Ok, Mom, now I can get that bap-i-tized thing." Well, I didn't doubt the Lord drawing Ryan to himself. I didn't even doubt Ryan's decision. I wasn't quite sure what to do. So, I told my husband about it and we decided to just wait and see if Ryan brought it up again. He didn't.
Fast forward three and a half years. I have always felt secure in the fact that the Lord had already started a work in Ryan. But now that Ryan was older and he was learning more and more, I wanted him to solidify that decision to follow Christ. The Lord really laid on my heart in January of this year to pray fervently for Ryan to truly understand what it meant to accept Jesus as his Savior. So, I began to pray. And I asked others to pray. I knew God was working. I could tell by Ryan's prayers, his questions, and his change in behavior. He went to overnight Kids Camp for the first time this year. God stirred. He moved to a third grade Sunday School class with Mama Carol (a kid loving, Scripture teaching, woman of God!) God stirred some more.
This week is VBS at Christ Community Church. Last night was my night to teach. The story: Jesus' life, death, and resurrection. I had recruited a friend of mine, Garrett, to help me teach it by portraying Peter. Garrett did a phenomenal job in sharing how Peter must have felt when he blew it with Jesus...denying him 3 times. I asked the kids, "Anyone in here ever felt like they blew it?" Ryan raised his hand and said, "1000 times , Mom, you know it, 'cause you're my Mom." I smiled. And then I reminded the kids that God forgives, that God loves them so much that He sent His son Jesus to die for them and their sins, and that He rose again so that we could live forever with Him! "If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, tonight's a great night to do that. If He is calling you, listen to Him." I prayed with the kids and dismissed them. On the way out, Ryan came and hugged me and said, "Mom, I want to ask Jesus into my heart and...I want to be digested as soon as I can!" "Digested?" "You know, Mom, the water thing?" "Oh...Baptized." "Yes! That's it!"
We came home. He shared the news with Bekah and Daddy. We all four (now a house full of Christ followers!) sat down as Ryan prayed to receive Christ into his heart. He told Jesus he wanted Him to control his soul and his life. (His words.) And then the three of us took turns praying over him and blessing him. Chris (my man) thanked God that his son was now also his brother. Bekah prayed for Ryan to "fully embrace his relationship with Christ." I prayed that God would bless him and have him do AMAZING things for the kingdom. It was GLORIOUS!
And yes, there's a party going on right here! A Celebration to last throughout the years! (Forever!) Won't you join us at the party? We have a place reserved especially for you.
Thanks for letting me share my heart today. You all are such a blessing to me!