At church this morning, one of the people from the congregation gave the message. He has been coming to our church for about two years. He was baptized this past June, as I write about here. In his message, he was giving us his testimony about how he became a Christian.
He told us that he long had feelings of aimlessness, depression, and anxiety, and those were hurting his relationship with his girlfriend. One day, when he was at the mall, he received a phone call from someone he did not know and with whom he had no connection. The phone call was from a Christian lady telling him that she felt that he needed the Lord, and she proceeded to pray the sinner’s prayer with him. For about a year, he did not think much about that, but his girlfriend left him and started seeing someone else, and he felt that he had hit rock bottom. The Christian lady on the phone sent him a book, which offered a Christian perspective about various emotions, such as anger. He would read that every night before going to bed, and that made him feel better. He decided to find his happiness in the Lord, whether or not he and his girlfriend got back together. Over time, they did, and now they are engaged. He says that he has seen his prayers get answered before his eyes, and that he has had dreams at night that have come true in reality. He also said that God has a plan for him and for everyone. He still has to conquer fear, he told us, but he asked us why we should be afraid, when God is watching over us.
He also said that many of us when we pray rush to the “Amen” at the end of the prayer, but he said that we should not be in such a hurry because God wants to help us.
One of the ladies at church is losing her hearing, and she found the young man’s insight about prayer to be helpful to her. She said that, for her, prayer is often a routine, and she felt convicted that she should put more effort into it. “Then, maybe I will get my hearing back!”, she said. In my mind, I was somewhat questioning what seemed to be her picture of God—-as someone who needs to be appeased. That seemed to differ, in my mind, from what the young man was saying: that God is there to help us, but we need to make ourselves available to him. But who exactly am I to question where the lady was coming from. It may not resonate with me, entirely, but obviously she hopes for a miracle from God, and there is nothing wrong with that. Moreover, my impression is that she is the type of person who will continue to love and serve the Lord, even if she loses her hearing.
In terms of the young man’s sermon, I liked the fact that the Christian lady on the phone not only walked him through the sinner’s prayer, but also provided him with tools of discipleship: how to live a better life, how to see the world in a better way, etc. There is much more to being a Christian than the sinner’s prayer! There is walking with God.
I, too, have anxiety and get depressed. I do not know if it is clinical, but it is still difficult. Having Asperger’s Syndrome is difficult. I also can have a hard time trusting in God, since I wonder why I should believe that things will turn out well for me, when they don’t seem to turn out well for a lot of people on earth. Where is God in their lives? I don’t go so far as to say that God is not in their lives, though. Anyway, faith is not always easy for me, but I still pray.