Eight months ago a young man named H___ was overcome with depression and hopelessness. Hassled by a life-long drug addiction, numerous warrants out for his arrest, and separated from his children, H___ decided to end his life. He put a gun in his mouth and pulled the trigger. Nothing happened. He pulled the trigger a second time. The gun still didnt go off. The hammer fell on both bullets, denting the back of the shell, but failed to fire.
My brother in the LORD, Andrew had been praying for H___ for four years. His prayers had gone up to a merciful God who intervenes in the lives of His children. In a time when there was no hope in H___s life, Jesus intervened with His life-giving hope and power. Andrew and H___ talked about Christ often and H___ acknowledged His reality and power, but struggled to give His life to Christ, even after Jesus spared him.
Six months ago, H___ explained to Andrew that he had warrants out for his arrest and that following Jesus meant he would have to turn himself in. Andrew told him that when you come to Christ, He erases your past and the record of sins youve committed. He offered to pray that God would erase H___s criminal record. At Bible study that night we prayed again that God would expunge the record of crimes that H___ had committed as a sign of Christs love for him and as a removal of every obstacle that was keeping H___ from Christ.
That week H___ was picked up for something minor and spent the night in jail. In the morning the officers released him, saying that they had run his record and that it was clean. Jesus cleansed his past in order to give H___ a future!
Still H___ resisted giving his life to Jesus. He had smoked marijuana since a young child. Both of his parents were slaves to the drug, and he hadnt gone a day without smoking in many years. Andrew and I began to pray for supernatural deliverance from marijuana addiction.
Last month H___ attended my home Bible study. We read Luke 14 and discussed what it meant to take up your cross and follow Christ. After the study I reminded H___ of the miracles that God had done in his life, encouraging him that God had a desire and love for him as well as a plan to use him in great ways. I asked him what stood between him and Jesus. He acknowledged all that God had done, but again said he couldnt give up marijuana. I explained that Jesus would take the marijuana away from him when he gave his life to the LORD, but he struggled to believe.
You would trade your soul for weed? I asked. He responded honestly,
Thats a fair question, but Im not ready.
Well, I said, In the same way that Jesus took your criminal record away, He will take weed away. We gathered around H___ and prayed that God would break the addiction and remove the chains that were keeping him from Christ.
The next afternoon we were preparing to set out to do street evangelism with a visiting mission team when H___ wandered in. He said,
I dont know why Im here, but I havent been able to smoke weed all day.
I knew it! I exclaimed. I asked him what stood between him and asking the LORD into his heart that day.
You just put fear into my heart, he said. After a pause he solemnly said, Lets do it. He prayed with us, confessing Jesus as his Savior and LORD.
H___ was being evicted from his house at the end of the month. That day Andrew called his landlord to see if he had a cheap place for H___ to rent. He said he did. H___ will live in the apartment right above a solid Christian who can disciple him. Our God is a supernatural delivering God!
H___ has been reading the Bible every day and allowing the LORD to change his life. He was lost but now is found, was dead and now alive.