Having just been given the gift of bread and juice, a reminder of *the greatest act of love the world will ever know, something happened. It was unexpected. I'd done this hundreds of times hadn't I, taking the bread and juice, praying and giving thanks for what I've been given-LIFE itself. A weighty reminder. But this time, something different happened.
As I started back the darkened aisle to return to my seat, the sea of people became individuals. Eternal Soul #1, Eternal Soul #2, Eternal Soul #3...How many people are here anyway, I wondered, figuring somewhere around 400.
400 eternal souls. There really is little time to talk about the weather these days.
As I padded back to my seat, as each sandaled footstep hit the concrete floor, God whispered: (step) Notice him...(step) Notice her...(step) Do you see him... (step) Look at her... (step)...
It was as if God was turning my heart to each one, for a nanosecond of time, as I passed by. Not turning my head, but oh-so-wanting to, I knew I was passing by custom made, worshiping souls.
Worshiping God or NOT.
In Christ or NOT.
Life or Death.
THERE ARE NO IN-BETWEENS HERE.
How does one hold the weight of eternity in his human mind?
As I passed by Mr. Disinterested, I felt myself wanting to grab him like you'd lovingly grab your little brother who's about ready to get into a fight, shake him by the shoulders, look into his eyes, and yell down into his soul, "Do you know him?" Do you really know him? Do you hear the lyrics to this song? I once was lost but now am found, was blind but now I see...Do.you.even.care?!
But you can't wake someone up by screaming or manipulation or sheer will. It's taken me a long time to get that.
Only God can save a soul.
As I sat back down in my seat, I was reminded of what He tells me in His word, that I did.not.choose.Him, I never would have I tell you, for dead people don't make choices. But He chose me, He woke me up. I was as surprised as anyone.
How could I have been so consumed with that unruly curl of hair this morning when people are dying here?
So we plead with our Father for souls, and He is the sole soul-winner. Wake them up, God. The One who makes things out of nothing and calls people to life. Call him to life, Father.
Almost too much to hold in this head.
Amazing Grace was playing in the background and words scrawled and scratched upon my heart once again, reminding me of my salvation:
...how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me, I once was lost but now am found, was blind but now I see. My chains are gone, I've been set free, my God, my Savior, has ransomed me, and like a flood, his mercy rains, unending love, AMAZING GRACE.
Ephesians 2:8,9 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
*Curt Brubaker used this phrase in our service on Sunday, and it grabbed my heart.