11 years ago, on December 5, 2004, in a freezing Wisconsin river, I excitedly began my new walk with God. At the time, Asia was not even on a bleep on my radar.
Two days ago, on December 5, 2015, as I sat next to a river that cuts through my city, I thought back on that day with great joy. I was with Simon and a good friend of his who he just found out was very interested in God. Simon wanted me to share the Gospel with his friend ZhaiNan. I told him that it would be better by far if he shared, and I would be there if he needed me.
Simon stepped up to the challenge and was more than willing. Simon spoke the truth in love and with boldness. He opened up and explained the basics of our Creator, our sin, the cross, forgiveness, etc. I helped fill in some gaps, but it was mostly him.
I got the sense that God was saying, “Alright, Simon, My son, you’ve been in relationship with me for about 2 years and I have transformed your life and your heart. Now it’s time for you to freely give to others what you have freely received.”
At the end, we simply asked ZhaiNan if he believed what we shared. ZhaiNan said YES! Then I asked him if he wanted to repent of his sin. He said YES again. Then, I asked him if he wanted to receive the Holy Spirit right now? Once again ZhaiNan said YES!
In a moment of reflection Simon told me, “I’ve never done this before, but we did it together.”
No fireworks. No crazy visions or outward expressions. Just another soul returning home forever. The next week, we began meeting with ZhaiNan for his first Bible study, which Simon and I co-lead.