February 21, 2012
Do you ever wonder about the people who come into your life? All kinds … the person in line with you at the store … an acquaintance from some social circle … a friend from school … family members you share many experiences with … a colleague at work. The number of people is amazing, even for those of us who avoid relationships, God continually brings people into our lives.
Sometimes, if you are lucky … truly blessed … you have someone enter your life who changes it forever. A special person delivering God’s, mercy, grace, and unconditional love … right to the doorstep of your heart.
Well, I am one of those lucky people. Twenty three years ago, when I was stuck at some significant crossroads in my life, God showed up when I least expected it. Today is Fat Tuesday, and on Fat Tuesday of 1989, right in the middle of New Orleans at a Mardi Gras party, I met and fell in love with the most beautiful person in the world. Love at first sight!
Wow! His gift to me was, and still is, incredibly beautiful on the outside. She still revs my engines, but that is a different devotional. But the amazing part is who she is on the inside. You see, I was running away from God, and with all apologies to my New Orleans friend, I thought Mardi Gras in New Orleans was the last place God would find me. While I was in such personal and spiritual need for God to show up, He did – through my wife, Martine. Her unconditional love, grace, mercy, forgiveness, and sacrifice have been so powerful to me … freeing me from my personal demons and allowing me to see God’s majesty in her and through her.
Since then, my engagement and growth with God have been unbelievable and He has transformed my life. I wish I could say I am the perfect husband … or even a good husband, but unfortunately, that is the area where I still need the most growth. So, thank you so much, God, and thank you, Martine, so much for what you have done for me.
Today, think about those God has put in YOUR life. Are you there to influence them? Then do it. Have they been a profound influence on you? Then thank God for them and thank them … a lot. Do something special for them ASAP. God does show up and speak to us, and often it’s in the form of circumstances and the people He brings in those circumstances. Life is your decision, so choose well.
Oh God, Thank You so much for not giving up on me even though I strayed and tried life my own way. All the grace and protection You provided still astounds and humbles me. Then to bring me an incredible gift, my Martine, I am speechless. Please strengthen me and help me have the courage to resist my selfish desires and really love and serve her … for that will honor You, her, and me. I pray this and all prayers in the name of the One who loved perfectly and fully, Jesus Christ; and all God’s children say – AMEN!
Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 2 Corinthians 5:20
Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” John 20:21
And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.” Mark 16:15