By: Marcey Green
‘Yes, Lord! use me’ These are words I said many times before. I’ve said them with varying intensity levels — sincerely, fervently, flippantly and I’ve even said them oh, so casually in the past. Words so easily murmured during a prayer or quiet time.
I think I often fail to actually LISTEN to the Lord when His Holy Spirit is wanting to fulfill that request.
Yesterday, I was reminded of this in a unique way while at the Mbarara Church. We had just finished worshipping for several hours. Church lasts from around 10am to 1pm here.
After the sermon, which my team delivered, we were standing up & visiting with the church members prior to departing. I was talking with Morgan and two young PCM students when an older Ugandan man approached me and introduced himself. He told me his name is Pastor William. My eyes were immediately drawn to his worn, damaged Bible. He was clutching it proudly in his hands while we talked. I noticed many pages were shredded, dog eared, and curled up from use, but when I looked closer I noticed that actually about 1/4 of the back of the Bible was ripped off and missing. I felt a tug on my heart, the Holy Spirit impressed upon me, ‘Give him your Bible!’ Nah, I told myself silently, I don’t want to make a fuss. So we spoke a few pleasantries then he went back across the room. I stayed put.
Another, tug. ‘Give him your Bible.’ Then strangely or not so strangely Pastor William came back over. ‘Yes, Lord’ I thought so I took his hand and told him that I wanted to give him my Bible. He was overjoyed. He shared with us that he had found his Bible some time back and became a pastor. He preached in the prisons. But, one day his Bible was taken from him in the streets and burned. The damage was from it being burned. Pastor William was so happy to have a new complete copy of God’s word.
The PCM student standing next to me named Medad then told me that this man does not read English. Medad offered to exchange his bible, in their native bible with the man so he could read it. The man declined the thoughtful offer and said, “I will use this Bible to learn English so that I can preach in English!”. Pastor William then asked us to pray over this new Bible and pray for him. We were delighted!
When I listen & obey the prompting of the Holy Spirit, I am always blessed. Obedience!! Something so small for me, can have an eternal impact with far reaching effects. Who knows how Pastor William will influence for Jesus’ kingdom. It was actually one of my son, Michael’s Bibles. Yet, now I suspect it is among Pastor William’s most treasured possessions.
I am reminded of John 14:21 when Jesus says,
“Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me is loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him”
This is what I want. To see the Lord, for him to show himself to me. Yet, how closely this privilege is linked to obedience!
Yesterday I was blessed so much by this Pastor’s faithfulness to the Lord. I am so thankful that God allowed me to be a small part of his story.
We ran into our friend again today and he was still so excited about the Bible he had been given. He now is requesting to come to Parental Care School’s P3 class (similar to third grade in the states) so he can learn English. He wants to be able to preach in English!
Mellon told us he is a good man who preaches God’s word wherever he goes and drops off food to Supermom’s house anytime he is able to help her with the many children.