SBC Life Articles

When a Storm Brought Peace

I'm not sure what it's been like where you live, but we have had some serious storms around Daytona recently. The tornado on Christmas day was the last one. But we all know that weather storms are usually not as hard as personal storms that we go through. Often times our Lord will try to reach us anyway that He can in order to help us change direction and give us peace and that abundant life that only He can offer. He said, "But unless you repent you will all perish as well" (Luke 13:3). Consider this testimony from Dr. Gerald L. Hodges, pastor of Hillcrest Baptist Church in New Albany, Mississippi.

A couple of semesters ago during our visitation, an electrical storm was moving through our county. The rain, wind, and lightning were so bad that I asked our team leaders to take this opportunity to practice with their teams because I felt like the weather was too bad to send people out in it. However, earlier that day someone had called me and given me the name of a family to visit. So while the other evangelism teams remained at the church to practice and pray, I took my team out into the storm to make this visit, not knowing anything about the family.

We finally found the address — out in the country, in a mobile home park, with no front porch, and with about four inches of water on the ground around the mobile home. It was raining so hard that we sat in the car wondering, "Should we go to the door or not?" Of course, we did. Soaking wet, standing in four inches of water, I knocked on the door.

A young man in his thirties opened the door surprised to see anyone out in that kind of weather. I introduced myself and my team and told him that we were from Hillcrest Baptist Church. The young man threw up his arms and shouted, "Oh, Lord! God is going to kill me!" After he regained his composure, he invited us in.

The young man then began to tell us about his day. He told us how that morning he was given a "pink slip" when he arrived at work. He loved his job so much that he actually had a complete mental and physical breakdown and was taken to the doctor.

While waiting in the room for the doctor to come in, a nurse (one of our FAITH-trained members) came and began to take his vital signs. She began to share and to tell him about Hillcrest Baptist Church but was interrupted before she could ask, "In your personal opinion, what do you think it takes to go to heaven?" About this time, another nurse entered his room (another one of our trained members) and began to take up where the other nurse left off. She asked the question, but he was not interested so she invited him and his family to come to church.

The doctor came in to examine him and advised him that there was nothing physically wrong with him. (The doctor is also one of our Christian soul winners). The doctor told him that what was wrong in his life was his relationship with God, and he shared the Gospel with him. The young man still was not interested. However, the doctor invited him to visit Hillcrest.

This young man had never gone to church in his life. His mother had always been negative about church and church people. That afternoon as he arrived at his home, his mother was there. She was trying to get him to get his life right with God. She had heard about our church and that it was a church that cared about people. She told him, "Go to Hillcrest and take your family — before God kills you!"

Shortly after her conversation with him, the storm rolled in, with heavy wind, rain, and lightning — and about an hour later we arrived from Hillcrest Baptist Church and knocked on his door. We must have scared him to death (and, of course, the Holy Spirit was really working in his life). He said, "Tell me how to get saved! If I don't get saved tonight, I know that something bad is going to happen!"

I had the wonderful privilege of picking fruit God had prepared for harvest. My team and I had chills after we got back into my car, not from the rain, but from the awesome experience of seeing God save a young man in the middle of the "storm."

What a testimony and an encouragement for all of us to have our spiritual antennae up, to be willing to be used, and then to get in on what the Holy Spirit is doing in a life! Now that is the exciting part of evangelism — being a part of seeing lives changed! Are you willing to make the sacrifice to do whatever it takes? The Lord can do it without you, but He desires to use you, so don't miss the blessing!

    About the Author

  • Bobby H. Welch