A few months ago I met a woman named Kathy at one of our neighborhood coffee shops. I had previously felt drawn to pray for Kathy when I saw her reading a handful of books about New Age healing. I began to wonder what would happen if Kathy were to discover the healing power of Jesus. It felt like the results would be significant.
One day, while I was preparing for a sermon I would be giving at one of our local churches, Kathy came and sat next to me. “What are you working on?” she asked. Taken by surprise, I said, “I’m studying to teach at a church on why Jesus is still relevant for all of humanity.” She responded, “Really? Can I come?” The next day she was there, sitting on a couch in the back of the room, but clearly intrigued with the person and work of Jesus.
A few months later she came to our Christmas party and spent a good hour or so asking Amy, my wife, about our jobs and the healing power of Jesus. Two weeks went by and she emailed me asking if Amy and I could pray for her in the hopes that Jesus might heal some of her emotional wounds. What an invitation!
We have prayed over Kathy several times now in our home, and each time she has sensed Jesus meet with her in those moments. The last time she was with us, in the middle of having a great conversation about Jesus, I glanced at my bookshelf and saw the book Abba’s Child. I thought that it would be a good book for her. Just minutes later, our one-year-old (who is trained not to touch those books!) grabbed Abba’s Child off the shelf and handed it to her.
“Wow, Kathy, maybe that’s a sign!" I said. "You might want to read that!” She took it home, immediately began reading, and within days I had several emails from her about how much she loved the book.
For the past few months I have been wondering if it's worth the social “risk” to reach out to my neighbors. Can I trust God to respond when I pray? Is the gospel big enough to bring freedom, healing, and restoration to those in need?
As we see Kathy begin to experience the healing power of Christ, we can answer these questions with a resounding yes!
San Diego, California