This photo was captured yesterday at the altar at Celebration, where God is moving in power, doing great and mighty things!!! The blonde haired boy on the left in the American Eagle shirt is a young man named Daniel who has been coming to CC for just a week. Invited by his good friend Ben, (who is one of our Celebrators) he came for the first time last Sunday. Then on Wednesday he came to our youth ministry -- "Refuge", and when our son Dustin gave the altar call at the conclusion of his message, Daniel responded to the call to accept Jesus as His Savior. This young man has a story that will break your heart. Just recently his father died of a heart attack. When his father died, his mother was so traumatized over the death that she had a stroke, and also died! Daniel is now without natural parents in this world. He lives with his grandmother. But he has found REFUGE...literally.
Ben reached out to him and invited him to Celebration Church where he has been surrounded this week by new found family and friends, who will take up the call along with his grandmother, a woman of God, to love and care for him. We will rise up to be the spiritual mothers and fathers to Daniel.
I thank God every day for sending us people like Daniel.
When I see people like Daniel at the altars, it makes everything in ministry worth it all! Aren't we so blessed to have opportunity to be spiritual parents? There is no shortage of people crying out for our love, our leadership, our investment in their lives.
Bill Hybels once said, "The local church is the hope of the world." I believe that. The local church is made up of people -- people like Ben who invite people like Daniel. Thank God for hope! Thank God for Jesus! Thank God for the church!