Summary: If your friend were God’s friend how would their life be different? If your friend were God’s friend how would your relationship with each other change? If your friend were God’s friend how would you feel about their eternal destiny?
On our vacation, I asked God to open some doors for me to give a clear word about Christ. I was looking for opportunities. Let me share a story with you about one of them.
I was in a pool playing around with Evan, our ten-year-old son, when a man asked me, “Are you finding you way around here OK?” I’d almost forgotten that when we had arrived at our vacation spot, I had asked him for some directions.
We chatted for a while and I was looking for an open door. As I asked about the kind of work he did, he said, “I run a company that sells a lot of office equipment… especially to churches.” Well, that was an easy entrée to talk about spiritual things. I think God answered my prayer for an open door. I had a very clear opportunity to share Christ.
Since I know where he’s staying, I just sent him a follow-up note. Here’s some of what it says:
I wanted to thank you for being so helpful and hospitable for my family and me. I’m the guy who you pointed in the right direction while you were washing your car and who had a conversation with you in the pool one day.
As I sit here writing, I just prayed that God will heal you wife’s wrist quickly and completely. [She had fallen a few days earlier and shattered her wrist.] I also prayed for your health. I noticed a scar on your chest that I presume was from an open heart surgery in the past.
I recall that we talked about the Chicago bishop who was dying of cancer with
such blazing faith. As you remember, I mentioned that a hope of heaven is not secured through religion, but through relationship. Religion is spelled “DO” because it’s based on what we do to be right with God. But a relationship is spelled “DONE” because it’s based on what Jesus did when He died and rose again for us.
Enclosed, please find a booklet that explains very clearly how to have a relationship – a friendship – with God that will last for all eternity. If you have any question, please call or email me.
It was a pleasure to meet you and your wife. I believe God orchestrated our meeting for His divine reasons. Thanks again for your warm smile and helpful hospitality.
Now, what’s going to happen with Bob? I wish I could tell you he got down on his knees right beside the pool and invited Jesus into his heart. I wish I could tell you we heard the angels singing the Hallelujah chorus because he repented. I wish I could tell you that I baptixed he and his wife right then and there! None of that happened. Only God knows what’s really going on in Bob’s heart. But I’m optimistic. Why? I think God opened the door for a clear word about Jesus for Bob.
This morning, I want you to think about a friend at work or in your neighborhood or at school who is far away from God. Some of you have members of your own family who are far away from God. If your friend were God’s friend how would their life be different? If your friend were God’s friend how would your relationship with each other change? If your friend were God’s friend how would you feel about their eternal destiny?
Helping your friend become God’s friend
Text: Colossians 4:2-6, p.158
Series: The Truth about truth in a “whatever” world
We’re coming to the close of this series through Colossians. Next week is Labor Day weekend and we’ll be dealing with a section in Colossians that deals with work – what kind of boss you ought to be, what kind of employee you ought to be.
Today, helping your friend become God’s friend. We each have the privilege and responsibility to be a vital part of that process.
Christ has changed us from enemies into his friends and gave us the task of making others his friends also.
II Corinthians 5:18 (Today’s English Version)
Once we are His, God uses us to reach others.
He saves us and then sends us.
Jesus calls us not only to come to Him, but to go for Him.
We have been sent to speak for Christ.
II Corinthians 5:20 (NCV)
That means you and that means me. And it meant a man named Paul, the writer of this letter. When Colossians was written, Paul was suffering in a Roman prison because he had been trying so hard to make friends for God in a world that was hostile to God. In this paragraph, he offers up a prayer request. You expect him to ask people to pray that he’d get out of jail. But this isn’t even mentioned in his request.