We accepted an invitation to a business banquet but when we arrived I was disappointed to learn it was a “Christian” event. Religion was not part of my upbringing so I ignored the spiritual side of life. The speaker was a successful entrepreneur who discovered he had a need which could only be met by a relationship with God through His Son Jesus Christ, a truth that had transformed his life. He said that the couples who had invited believed this too, which is why they wanted to share this “good news” with us!
A week later I got a call challenging me to study the Bible. As a fourth generation bookseller, and a literature major in college, I’m embarrassed to say that I had never really looked at the world’s first book ever published and it’s best seller ever since, the Bible. I was shocked to find that it was relevant to my life, but I still didn’t believe in God.
At 1:30 AM, my wife and I were caught in a severe storm while on a small sailboat. Rain was pouring into the cabin. Lightening struck the water next to our boat. We were terrified of drowning. For the first time in my life I heard Sue pray. I prayed too. We survived, but when we surveyed the harbor the next morning, 25% of the sailboats had capsized in the storm. That could have happened to us!
When we returned home, we met with our Bible study leaders and told them our story. Sam asked me what I thought of this experience. I replied, “I guess I finally believe in God. There He was in this storm in all His power and glory and I was utterly helpless, there was nothing I could do to save myself.” He asked if I would like to receive God’s gift of forgiveness through His Son Jesus Christ. I hesitated. I was a self-reliant businessman and thisChristianity stuff was all so new. But I humbled myself and asked God to forgive my sin and selfishness, and to make me the kind of person He wanted me to be.
Reading the Bible now made much more sense to me. I prayed about business decisions and had a peace even in difficult situations. A good marriage became great as we shared things before God in prayer that we had never even talked about before. Remember that emptiness in my life I had no idea how to fill? That was gone because I had a new purpose for living, to love God and share Him with others.