Great Moments in Leadership - Watching Life Transformation

We were eating at a Mexican food restaurant when a younger couple with children walked up and said in a questioning tone, "Pastor James?" I acknowledged, and they proceeded to express their happiness in seeing us. They wanted their children to meet the man who had helped them meet Jesus and become Christians, baptized them and on this evening celebrate the over ten years that had passed since I had officiated their wedding; all of this caused them to break the cycles of the inner-city and become the family they are today. I felt like the character George Bailey in the movie "It's A Wonderful Life" as I looked into the faces of their children and introduced myself. Christ had changed my life, and now He gave me a glimpse of how He had used me to touch other lives. 

How many times throughout the years did I get to see someone completely transform their lives? I have had the privilege of being there in that divine moment when the grace of God connected with a struggling or hurting individual. 

I answered the phone and heard the funeral director's voice say..."James, we have a family that lost their husband and father. Could you help us with the service?" Over the next few days I learned the story of a man's life. I listened to a family's pain and let them relive their memories. Then I got to share his story with family and friends at the funeral service. In the weeks that passed, the widow started attending our church. She got connected with ladies in our ministry who had walked a similar path of loss. Worship, Bible study, prayer, social and meaningful relationships in the church became a regular part of her life. Every Sunday I see her sitting with a great smile and obvious happiness on her countenance. There she is, surrounded by all her new friends because eight years ago I answered a phone call and stepped into a bog of emotional turmoil and brokenness. Eight years later, she now helps newly widowed ladies find direction and purpose in their radically changed lives. I get to see God working miracles.. 

Paul, the Christian leader of the first century said: "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come. Everything is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: That is, in Christ, God was reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed the message of reconciliation to us. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, certain that God is appealing through us. We plead on Christ’s behalf, “Be reconciled to God.” He made the One who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." 2 Corinthians 5:17-21 (HCSB) 

Sometimes I just watch in awe at life transformation...

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