Sermon Illustrations

God Uses Tragedy to Draw Couple To Himself

Cathy’s story:

A few years ago a woman and a man who were living together started coming to the church I pastor. She had gotten pregnant and was expecting. Though they weren’t saved, they were beginning to seek the Lord. I was much in prayer for them. When it came time for the baby to be born, a horrible thing happened. In the birthing process the baby swallowed some of its own stool (meconium), and a dangerous reaction ensued. The whole church was praying for the baby to live, I remember praying that it would be a testimony of deliverance that would help push the parents over the edge to serve the Lord. Despite much prayer the child died. I had prayed that the mountain would be cast into the sea, but my mountain did not move at all. I was so personally devastated that the child died, in spite of prayer, I could not get myself to go to the hospital to see the grieving family. I felt I had nothing to say. In 20 years of ministry I had never been speechless before. These are the types of moments pastors are made for. Yet, I felt totally out of the water on this one. Thankfully, the story doesn’t end here. A few days later a woman in my church went to the Hallmark store to try to get a card for the grieving mother. She was having a hard time finding something appropriate, when the store manager came over and asked if she could help. The woman explained the situation, and the store manager’s face flushed and she walked away quickly, leaving the woman from my church flustered and confused. A few moments later the store manager came back, tears flowing down her cheeks, saying, "I also lost a child that way, here is a card I would have liked someone to send me." God is amazing! For that Hallmark store manager, I could not imagine anything that could have helped her more, than she herself counseling someone else in the exact same condition. The story of the Hallmark manager, and the card she recommended, brought great comfort to the grieving mother at the hospital, and shortly thereafter she and her husband (they married) gave their lives to Christ. I thought all was lost, I was speechless, God used this to show me, that sometimes its best He use others instead of the pastor. The mountain was cordoned off to me, but only so that something better could be done.

From a sermon by Maurice McCarthy, Why Didn’t My Mountain Move Pt. 5, 5/11/2010

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