A couple found their way back to God because Pastor James was at the right place, at the right time!
Updated: Jul 27, 2022
THE LORD’S GOSPEL AMBASSADORS (Part 2)
Very often, human beings will exert a great deal of effort to find something that they value or something that they love when it has been lost. If we think we have lost our wedding ring down the kitchen drain, for example, we will crawl under the sink and disassemble the pipes to rescue our beloved possession. The Bible also mentions the story of the lost sheep, where the shepherd with 100 sheep lost one. Because of his love and care for that sheep, he decided to leave the 99 and tried to find the lost one. And he did find it!
The same is true when it comes to seeking and saving the lost. Some people who were formerly under God’s fold went astray for some reason. However, God does not give up on them. He finds ways to bring them back to His presence. He would send his servants to do their mission so the lost would be found and reunited with God’s family.
This is the continuation of Pastor James’s astounding story when he was in the United Kingdom. After the conference he attended in St. Ives, he went back to Cardiff, and he had some free time to just look around and eat the food he was craving. He saw one familiar fast-food restaurant that matches his taste, so he went inside and wanted to dine. As he went inside, he saw a couple with their 10-year-old daughter. He smiled at them, so they smiled back at him. Pastor James went to the counter and ordered his food first then he sat at the nearby table with the family. He smiled at them and asked, “Hello, are you guys Filipino?”. “Yes,” the wife answered with a smile. They were glad to meet their fellow countrymen. They exchanged stories with Pastor James, and he could feel the hopelessness of the couple.
They shared their life story with Pastor James that someone swindled them and ran off with their money. They were distraught by the events that were happening in their lives and having no hope left the wife thought of ending her life. It was heartbreaking to hear but as Pastor James continued talking with them. He was compelled to share God’s love and His Word with them. With Pastor James’ encouragement, the family started to see a ray of hope about the situation they were in. They decided to surrender their lives to God at that moment. Pastor James was extremely glad that souls have been saved and he continued teaching them. Every Wednesday, he would visit them and teach them more about the Gospel. They broke their idols and buried them in their backyard. The husband also turned away from indecent images and videos which were destroying his life and his relationship with his wife. The family turned away from their old lives and started to walk a life that will glorify the Lord. The change in the lives of the family was instant yet it was not by might but by the Spirit of God that made it possible.
They wanted to be baptized and it was the perfect timing because in Woodsville, there is a Christian church that has a scheduled water baptism, and they would like to go to a church every Sunday. The couple wanted Pastor James to baptize them but according to British culture, only the senior pastor of the church can baptize new believers. Pastor James respected their culture and did not press about this matter. The following day, the senior pastor spoke with Pastor James, “You know what, I couldn’t sleep because God wanted you to baptize the couple”. Pastor James was so happy that he would have the honor to baptize the couple. The day of the couple’s baptism came and Pastor James was overwhelmed, and tears ran down his cheeks. The couple found their way back to God because Pastor James was at the right place and at the right time. Pastor James was so happy to lead the people back to God that he pleaded to Him, “Lord, I hope I can just stay here.” He was incredibly happy to share the Good News to the people that he wanted to continue his mission there.
Also, during his stay in the UK, he met a couple named Sharon and James through Ptr. Eric who hosted him. Despite not knowing Pastor James well, the couple offered to tour him around the most famous and beautiful sceneries in town. Pastor James was profoundly grateful for the wonderful experience, and he prayed for the couple. After praying for them, they handed him an envelope. As he said his goodbyes to them, he went inside the house of his host family and when he opened the envelope, he was very surprised. He saw a lot of British pounds as he opened the envelope! It was his first time receiving such a huge amount of money. The couple’s generosity did not end there. Every week, they would visit Pastor James and bring him to nice places, and give him more money because they were so blessed with his life. Another instance was when they invited Pastor James to a prayer meeting at a Bible College. The other Filipino missionaries were also invited. At the end of the prayer meeting, there was one man who approached Pastor James and handed him a lot of money. God had a reason why He blessed Pastor James a lot. The money will be used for his plane ticket going back to the Philippines since he only had a one-way ticket. Even though Pastor James wanted to stay in the UK, he knew that God knows best. He believed that God wanted him to go back home.
From the place where he was staying, he had to travel to London for three hours to purchase his air ticket. He had an acquaintance in London, and he was invited to a church where she was a member. Pastor James spoke in front and shared his testimony. To his surprise, he was given a lot of ‘love gifts’ from the church members. He was incredibly happy with the overflowing blessings from God for it was very unexpected.
He went back to the Philippines in March, and he found out that his dad was ill and he was the only one who could take care of him. They were a bit estranged at first but as they spent more time with each other, they started to mend their broken relationship. His father got better and after he was discharged from the hospital, he started attending church again. Pastor James was so happy that his dad restored his faith and returned to God.
Unfortunately, after some time, his dad passed away. But before he passed away, he surrendered his life to God. Knowing that he is in good hands now Pastor James understood why he had to go back to the Philippines. God truly knows best. He was thankful for the time he had spent with his dad, and they became closer. He found out later from the other church members that his dad was very proud of him, and he would always talk proudly about Pastor James.
Words cannot describe how amazing God is. The way He orchestrates everything and leads His children. His wonderful acts go beyond our imagination. How he brought people together and how He saves His lost children was truly amazing. It is a great comfort that we are serving a God who truly cares. Praise to God the Father! The God who saves his people rescues us from the darkest powers and tyrannies of night and brings us liberation by His Son, Christ Jesus.
“And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.”
(Written by: Venus Jablo)