Is there a God?
Often, at night, when I tuck my kids into bed, we talk. And in the comfort of their beds and the dull glow of the night light they share events of the day.
A few days ago as I kissed my 13 year old goodnight, she revealed a conversation that she had had with a classmate that day. I’m not sure how the conversation started but my daughter had mentioned church and her classmate said “what’s the point of going to church if there is no God?
Earlier in the morning this same girl had confided that her mum was terminally ill with cancer.
Oh my! What do you say to a young teen who is about to lose her mum and doesn’t know the hope that can be found in Jesus?
Well, my daughter was at a loss and didn’t know what to say to her already hurting friend. “I didn’t want to argue with her, or hurt her anymore, but what should I have said Mum?”
That night my daughter and I spoke a little about prayer, healing and miracles, but in the back of my mind I was thinking that none of these things guarantee the mums healing.
Ultimately God gives and He takes away and we have to have the faith to trust that everything is for our good. But if you don’t believe in a good God, or any God …..
I also realised that these kinds of encounters may have some impact on my daughters faith too. I mean, if her friends are questioning or unbelieving then her 13 year old brain must start to wonder, “Is there a God?”
What could I say to my daughter to help her grow her faith as well as equip her to share it with her friends.
This week, as I’ve been thinking about this girl, my daughter and and what my daughter could have said in that moment, I heard the news of Billy Graham’s death. It’s been all over the news and the internet and I’ve read about the millions of people reached and lives transformed by the power of Billy’s conviction and his words.
Oh, to have the gift of knowing what to say to turn peoples faces to Jesus.
Then this morning I received another email regarding Billy Graham. It was from tifwe.org and was about a man named Louis Zamperini.
In it the author describes how a series of terrible events led Louis to a broken life of nightmares and alcohol abuse, how his wife begged him to attend a Billy Graham rally and how his life was transformed in one sweet encounter with Jesus. If you want the full story, read this.
And in that one email I had been shown the answer to “Is there a God?”
When we are confronted by people questioning the existence of God, the one thing we can do is point to lives radically changed by Him. Zamperini is one of those. His life was a mess. His wife, no doubt loved him and had tried everything to save him from despair, but she could not do for him what one night with Jesus could.
Christian testimonies are everywhere and they are an incredibly powerful way to point to Jesus.
I’ve read about a man who encountered Jesus in a prison cell and who, on being released, returned weekly to that same prison to share the gospel with young offenders.
A few years ago our family was on holiday up the coast. We met a young German girl who was travelling alone and we invited her to join us for dinner. One thing led to another and we ended up inviting her to come back home with us to spend a few days exploring the Sunshine Coast which she had not visited.
While she was in our home she shared her testimony with my children. It was a chance encounter and her story was a fascinating, faith building one for my children and I to hear.
She did not come from a Christian home and had had no Christian influence through her childhood. When she graduated from school she was unable to find work and a few sad life events sent her spiralling into depression. Desperate and alone in her room one night she began to seriously consider suicide.
In that moment God did something amazing and revealed Himself to her. She did not go into the details with us and I am sure it must have been a crazy, intimate moment, but she did share how that moment had completely changed her life, who she was, and what she wanted to live for.
From that moment her life did a complete U-turn. The depression disappeared, she was able to find a job and she was able to share her life changing experience with her unbelieving family.
There are so many stories on the internet too. You can read about the Machine Gun Preacher, whose life was transformed from a murdering gang leader to a Jesus follower dedicated to saving young people in Africa for Christ.
Joyce Meyer was an abused child who then married an abusive husband, but God took her life and transformed it and He has used her to turn hundreds of people across the world to Jesus.
God is real! He is alive and changing lives, yesterday, today and all of the tomorrow’s that lie ahead.
We are not all Billy Graham or Joyce Meyer but we are all called to discipleship.
To those of us to whom evangelism doesn’t come easy, I think if we can arm ourselves with testimonies to share, we can point those who are asking “Is there a God?” to the feet of our saviour, Jesus.
Life changing, awe inspiring, mind blowing testimonies of an undeniably, amazing God. That’s how we respond when somebody asks “Is there a God?”