Photo credits

The Embalse de Riano in northern Spain. The picture was taken by .... me!

Tuesday, June 25

God is really real

So I had to speak at the informal, interactive evening service. I spoke on the lead-in to us making a declaration of faith in Christ, showing how God has been calling us right from the foundation of the earth. It was quite a Calvinist talk, but balanced with a healthy dose of Arminias. As part of my ‘interaction’, I asked some people to tell the story of how they became Christians. Three of them I had primed two weeks earlier. One came up through Sunday school, one felt God’s call through the beauty of duck eggs, and one had had a difficult life with multiple cancers, bereavement and family tensions. All good stuff, illustrating that often God does not conform to our evangelical ‘Sinner’s prayer’ models.

But the thing that made the evening for me was a 75 year-old lady who does not normally come to the evening service. Not knowing my intention to ask for testimonies, as she came into the building she went to the Vicar and asked him if she could give her testimony. He was reluctant knowing her tendency to ramble on. But I was thrilled that God was endorsing my event by sending extra testimonies.

And what a testimony it was! As a young woman she had been the 1960’s equivalent of a ladette – but one night on her own in her bedroom she begged God that she should not go to hell. She then had a supernatural experience with stuff glowing that doesn’t scientifically glow, etc., and filled with the Holy Spirit she had danced and praised God all night long, followed by the puzzlement of colleagues in the morning when she was no longer interested in cigarettes and pubs. POW! So not only did God endorse my event, but he sent along the most powerful testimony I have heard for a long time.

The rest of the evening went well. The music was terrible but that did not stop genuine worship at the end. And I went home happy, knowing that God had looked down from heaven and seen …. Me!

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