6/1/13 Joshua about 45
As I walked down the sidewalk a man’s face lit up when he recognized me, “You talked to me about a half a year ago! Since then I’ve changed my life around. I’m not always out drinking with my buddies. I have a new granddaughter and I’m serious about taking care of her… My wife can’t believe all the ways I’ve changed ” He – Joshua – went on about all the changes in his life, and several times shook my hand, thanking me for our conversation months ago. But something was missing from all his talk about changing his life around. He never gave thanks to God. It was all about the changes he had made and the part I had played in that, but not about a new relationship with God. I could tell he was proud that he had repented of his sin, but he was forgetting about the other side of the same coin – his need for faith in Jesus. I think he was probably like Apollos in Acts 18 –full of fervor for the Lord but only knowing the “Baptism of John” – a baptism of repentance. Vs. 26 tells us that “When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately.” I tried to help explain the Gospel to Joshua more adequately – encouraging him to continue in repentance but also to make the next step of faith in Christ – but it seemed like he was too wrapped up in his positive new lifestyle to listen. We are all people “under construction” as God works in our lives, and I can see that God is tearing out some old habits and building a new foundation in Joshua’s life, but let’s just pray that those old habits don’t get replaced by new ones that continue to keep Joshua from the righteousness based on faith in Jesus that God desires for him.