He was in prison not that long ago…then a half-way house. Awhile back, the pastor of an OPC church about an hour away took him into his home and mentored him. We met Jim a couple of months ago when Ron preached in his church one Sunday to fill in for the pastor. I don’t know his full story or how he came to know Christ yet. Give me a few more conversations. (smile) Jim (not his real name) is now living in Dallas during the week and attending seminary there. The last two weeks he has been attending our church (an hour closer to Dallas) and attending his home church on Sunday nights
A few weeks ago, he was in a car accident. His car was badly damaged. He is fine. It happened just when he was trying to get a job. Do you know how hard that is for someone who has been in prison? Let’s just say it narrows your prospects by a lot! Then you take away his car and he is in pretty bad shape! This week, he is using the car of a friend. He’ll be working on the car in the next few days with his pastor friend and hopes to have it up and running. Meanwhile, this week he has some job interviews. One is a church internship job. Please pray for him this week…that God will provide a job for him.
The encouragement I received from him was that in all his telling of what happened there was no self-pity or complaining. He understands the grace of God…and perseverance…and the sovereignty of God in his life…to name just a few. So he keeps slugging away this hot summer on Greek (in seminary!), pinching pennies and trusting God to supply his needs. I was very encouraged to see that God’s grace is working in his life. The young man listening in on our conversation (who lives in a facility for troubled boys) was paying attention too! He knows Jim is facing the same difficulties he is (ie finding a job).
Isn’t it grand to see God use someone to encourage a self-righteous person who has known the Lord most of her life (and often takes it for granted) and a young man who may not even be a christian yet, through the life of a man who has made a LOT of mistakes in his life? His grace is truly amazing!