JUST ONE. (July 7, 2015)
‘I have learned that I will not change the world; Jesus will do that. I can, however, change the world for one person. and if one person sees the love of Christ in me, it is worth every minute. in fact, it is worth spending my life for.’ – katie davis || kisses from katie
from the minute we walked up, he had a look on his face that will be forever etched into my mind. it was as if he couldn’t believe that we were there to talk to him about Jesus and yet he knew that we were coming all along.
it was a ridiculously hot thursday afternoon in the flags. this being our fifth day in nicaragua, and our fourth day in the village, door-to-door evangelism was no simple task. with a team of eighty-five students and leaders, and not a lot of land to cover, every single house in the village had been checked off of the map.
our translator, bill, suggested we walk a little further to the parcels, the village right next to the flags. as we turned onto the dirt path into this new village, a horse ran by and two men followed. we slowly realized that the horse had escaped, and had somehow broken a hip in the process. as the younger man tended to the horse, we began a conversation with the other.
he told us that he lived 20 minutes from where we were; his only reason for being there was to catch his runaway. I’d like to think that if you looked up divine intervention in the dictionary, there would be a picture of us standing in the middle of that dirt road. we asked if he had accepted Christ, and he said no, but that he knew that Jesus died on the cross for us, and that if he were to accept Him, he would go to heaven. he knew because he was the only member of his family that hadn’t converted.
‘so what are you waiting for?!’
one of our leaders, julie, began to share the Gospel with him and answer some of his questions about christianity.
‘Jesus loves you so much that if you were the only one He saved by dying on the cross, He still would’ve done it. He loves you so much that he sent a bunch of Americans to tell you about it.’
then he prayed to receive Christ.
my favorite part about this story is that it is exactly what I prayed for just a few hours before– one salvation. just one.
‘I’m not really sure what to say… so I think I’ll just cry.’
it was the only response I could come up with. I wasn’t sure why I decided to walk across the classroom and sit next to Abby half-way through the school year, but as I sat in the hilton bathroom, crying with my small group as we listened to her explain the desperation she was feeling just a day earlier, I know it was Jesus.
it was Jesus when she, in passing, told me that she wanted to start coming back to church. it was Jesus when I invited her to #RUSHcamp, and she jumped at the opportunity. it was Jesus when her friends and family helped pitch in for her to be able to go. and it was Jesus when I got to watch her go from death to life, in salvation and baptism.
at #RUSHCamp last year, we were commissioned to go into our schools and be the hands and feet of Jesus like never before. we were on the brink of revival, we just knew it. with hands wide open, and belief that God was going to surpass our wildest dreams, we prayed and we hit the ground running.
and abby was the sole salvation. just one.
‘suppose one of you had a hundred sheep and lost one. wouldn’t you leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the lost one until you found it? when found, you can be sure you would put it across your shoulders, rejoicing, and when you got home call in your friends and neighbors, saying, ‘celebrate with me! I’ve found my lost sheep!’ count on it—there’s more joy in heaven over one sinner’s rescued life than over ninety-nine good people in no need of rescue.
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? and when she finds it you can be sure she’ll call her friends and neighbors: ‘celebrate with me! I found my lost coin!’ count on it—that’s the kind of party God’s angels throw every time one lost soul turns to God.’ – luke 15:4-10 (msg)
I’m a big-picture kind of girl. it is so unnatural for me to get excited about one salvation. I know that I’m not alone– how easy is it to get frustrated when God seemingly does so much less than what you were expecting?? walking into the flags, on the first day of ministry, I wanted to play a part in a lot more than just one salvation. walking into my school, the first day of my senior year, I wanted to see everyone radically changed by my Jesus. yet, I rejoiced in the one. and even the angels were rejoicing with me.
if you’re discouraged because you’ve seen just one…
‘be of good courage and let us be courageous for our people, and for the cities of our God, and may the Lord do what seems good to Him.’ – 2 samuel 10:12 (esv)
you do what you know to do and let God do the rest. His plan is perfect and He makes all things work together for good– what seems good to Him. sometimes that looks very different than what seems good to you. be courageous anyway. rejoice anyway.
and if you are the one…
Jesus loved you so much that He sent His own son to die the death that you deserved. He said it was finished, and it is. you and I have direct access to the God of the universe, and we can spend eternity in heaven with Him by confessing with our mouths and believing in our hearts that He is the Lord! (romans 10:9)
you may not feel very important, but the One who created the whole world loved you so much that He sent you to this blog post to tell you about it. He died for you. and when you decide to believe in Him, heaven will throw a party!
that’s how loved you are. that’s how much you matter to God. He himself will rejoice over just one! let’s join Him.