As amazing as Spiderman is, he couldn’t have orchestrated the day as perfectly as God did (and gave us the opportunity to see it).
It actually started a couple of weeks ago as a couple had contacted us asking for marriage help. He’s a soldier. She was a drug dealer and user up until last year. They have a 13-month old and married about a year. “Martin and Jenny” is who we’ll call them. Add a 9-month deployment in there too. He’d just returned and they were in deep trouble.
We met with them the first time a couple of weeks ago to hear their stories, both personally and as a couple. We were blown away. Our time with them is short as he has order to PCS (basically move) to Ft. Lewis, WA. by the end of the year. We asked if they’d consider going to ReUnite starting in a couple of weeks and between now and then, meet with us weekly to talk about Christianity and marriage. They were both eager and seemed teachable.
Last week, we decided to focus hard on the Gospel. Martin had shared the week prior, he remembers the day he accepted Christ’s death on the Cross as a teenager and recognized he has just decided to live in sin. We wanted to make sure Jenny had the opportunity to hear clearly and opportunity to respond. As Adam shared, she was wide-eyed and attentive. She had been raised in an environment where mediums, fortune tellers, and ouija boards were commonplace in the home. She had “heard” of a Creator God, one who came in human form, died on the cross, and rose from the dead, but didn’t think it was for her. In that meeting last Thursday, she accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior. It was seriously priceless.
As our time came to an end, Martin brought up some issues they are dealing within the marriage and we dealt with it as best we could in limited time. Due to timing, we asked if they’d be willing to meet on Monday.
Monday came and we barely recognized Jenny. What first appeared as severe fatigue, depressed, burdened Jenny last week gave way to a taller, happier, almost glowing Jenny this week. We met for a couple of minutes as couples then decided best to break apart; guy-to-guy, girl-to-girl.
Martin shared his life story with Adam. From being beaten by his dad at age 4, seeking identity in the military, to having his first wife cheat on him and he deciding there was nothing to come back home to so he might as well be the first one to kick in the door, disarm the IED, taking on any risk of death. He came home to no one, dated here and there, but they all chose to sleep with others. Along comes Jenny and ensuing baby, marriage, and his cycle repeats.
He and Adam talked about our identity in God, faith in Him, discipleship, what Christianity is and isn’t (faith based, not works). Martin was candid with his struggles and eager to change. He and Adam will be meeting a couple of times a week going forward.
Jenny started her time with Laura leading with the question, “what is the trinity? Like different levels of God?” Laura was able to teach her the differences between God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit to the point, Jenny then asked, “Do mediums go to hell?” Which then led into a lengthy discussion on demonic forces and the differences of the Holy Spirit’s voice. They talked through Acts 16:16 and John 4:1-10 and was priceless to see Jenny’s understanding and acceptance of God’s Word.
This appointment in and of itself was a total “God-thing”, but it gets even better…
We ended our time with Martin and Jenny as Adam had a lunch appointment with guys fighting Post Traumatic Stress. Laura headed outside for heat and sunshine as it was cold enough to hang meat in the church. Laura stopped our pastor as he was headed out for lunch for advice on where to go with Jenny and her belief in mediums, fortune tellers, and all. He brought out a book titled, “Redemption” and suggested Laura and Jenny read it together. Laura laid it on her lap as Dave drove out of the parking lot.
Not a second later did a vehicle pull into the church parking lot. A young lady gets out and walks up to Laura asking if there was someone she could talk to about “getting into church”. Laura enthusiastically said of course and invited her to sit with her.
“Betsy” shared she had been raised in the church with her dad as pastor. She had accepted Jesus and knew life with Him, but over the last several years she had fallen away from God and was living in sin; sleeping with men, drinking, etceteras. She was so full of shame for the life she was living. Over the last year, she has driven past the church every week and heard a voice telling her to go in, but making excuse after excuse she would just drive by and not obey. Finally today, she decided she would drive in the parking lot at lunchtime thinking no one would be there. As she turned into parking lot, she saw me sitting there on the bench and got the nerve to get out and ask for help.
Laura was so amazed by her story and the hand of the Lord preparing the way as He placed both of them there at the perfect moment. He is soooo good! Laura asked her if she believed that Jesus was the only way to salvation. She said she completely believed and confessed He was the only way of salvation. She explained that she felt heaviness and darkness and wanted to renew her commitment to the Lord as first in her life. They prayed together as she confessed to the Lord she wanted Him first in her life once again and talked about getting together weekly for discipleship.
Betsy was so excited she asked if they could meet yet this week. They scheduled their time for Wednesday (just 2 days away). She was so excited. It was a privilege for me to watch this girl come in with such shame and watch her appearance completely change to joy after our time of prayer. Wow we serve an AWESOME GOD who’s pursual of us never ends.
As Laura looked on her lap, she noticed the book “Redemption” our pastor had just given her minutes before Betsy pulled up. She felt the Lord saying, “this book was meant for her, Betsy.” Laura handed it to her and as Bestsy read over the table of contents, she began to weep. We knew it was meant for her. Thank you Lord!!! So today, they start studying together what redemption means through Christ.
Thank you Lord for allowing us to be apart of Your work and thank you (our ministry partners) for your partnership in ministry here at Ft. Hood!!