Never Give Up!
As I’m sitting here at the airport waiting for our flight home, all I can say is thank you Jesus! We’ve come to St. Louis to celebrate the grand opening and dedication of our son and daughter-in-law’s new church building. They have had a church for over 8 years, but they were using a facility that was attached to their former fitness center. It served its purpose, but now God is doing a new thing and we are very excited to watch as He is ushering them into this new season.
Let me explain the excitement and appreciation I’m feeling in my soul! Our son, Pastor Josh, was raised at Life Christian Church where he experienced wonderful anointed messages and revival fire! He was filled with the Spirit at 5 years old and at that young age he would stand on a chair behind the pulpit at His grandmother’s church and call out for people to repent! He loved the Lord so much and had many personal encounters with Him, but this made him very unusual to other children. He was badly bullied all through school and by his senior year of high school, he was done! He didn’t want to be known as “Christian boy” any longer. He just wanted to fit in. He began body building and later started bouncing in clubs. He was angry, in fights, drinking, and in and out of jail. My husband and I spent countless hours on our faces before God praying and doing battle for His soul.
One morning I woke up and the Lord informed me that Josh was going to take his life that day. A friend and I interceded that entire day for both His life and soul. That evening Josh walked into church for the mid week service. Our pastor, Pastor Rick Shelton, called him out and had an incredible word from the Lord for Josh! Josh got up off the floor that evening a completely changed man! His best friend Bethany, who had never gone to church, called him and asked if she could come with Him a week and a half later. She gave her heart to the Lord that day. That was November, by New Year’s Eve, the Lord spoke to both of them and told them they were to be married and within months they became husband and wife.
Bethany, who also writes for this group, grew by leaps and bounds! They were both so hungry for the Lord and they quickly made up for lost time. They went to Bible College and got their degrees in theology. Soon they became our pastors... it was surreal being ministered to by the son that we once fasted, prayed, cried, and decreed for God’s purpose to be manifested in His life! Our God is amazing!!!
It wasn’t until several years later, as Josh was ministering, he said that was the night he had planned to take his life, but felt led to stop by the church first!
I’m telling you all of this to encourage you mothers, fathers, children, friends, husbands, wives, brothers, neighbors, sisters, and coworkers... NEVER give up! There’s no one too far gone for God to save or too hopeless to use for His Kingdom’s sake! What He’s looking for is someone who is willing to fight, weep, fast, and pray on behalf of someone else’s soul! Chances are, whether you know it or not, someone did the same for you!
So, this morning (Sunday) as the pastor that dedicated our son as a baby, prayed over him and gave him that powerful word when he returned to Christ, and married him to his wife, Pastor Bethany, ministered at our grand opening service and he, his wife Donna Shelton and missionary friends, Jack and Sherry Harris laid hands on them and dedicated our building to the Lord, I’m blessed and amazed at the goodness of our God! Thank you Jesus! You truly are AMAZING!!!
What He’s done for us He’ll do for you, if you’ll continue to fast, pray, believe, battle for their souls and NEVER GIVE UP!
Philippians 1:6 (NLT) "And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns."
Isaiah 43:19 (NIV) See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.
Matthew 7:7-8 (NLT) “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
Acts 26:18 (TPT) And you will open their eyes to their true condition, so that they may turn from darkness to the Light and from the power of Satan to the power of God. By placing their faith in me they will receive the total forgiveness of sins and be made holy, taking hold of the inheritance that I give to my children!’
Galatians 6:9 (NLT) So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.