During the third week of March, my church held a week-long revival meeting. Friend, let me just say, the messages from that meeting were needed and to see the Lord move and touch in people’s lives was an absolute blessing.
About a week and a half before revival began, I felt the Lord nudge me into mailing out invitations to the lost and backslidden and invite them to attend the meeting. This is in no way, shape, or form a “look at me” post. A brag post for the Lord, yes. But, me? Definitely not.
I spent a good portion of a week googling mailing addresses and bothering everyone in the church to find accurate P.O. numbers and street addresses. The list of people I had planned to invite started out small (think six or seven), but quickly grew to a whopping seventy-two by the time I got finished.
Imagine for a moment: what if everyone that received an invitation came to know the Lord? That would have been over 100 people (some invitations were addressed to whole families) added to the Kingdom! I did not realize the burden some of my church members carry for their lost family members until I mailed invitations to their lost children. Oh, the burden those mothers and fathers must carry! I won’t lie, it put a lot of things into perspective for me and opened my eyes just a bit wider.
Of those seventy-two invitations, though, there was one particular man that I just could not find an address for. I searched the White Pages for days. I Facebook messaged anyone I thought might know his address, including his direct relatives. I texted my pastor (and by that, I definitely mean pestered) hoping he would have some information.
Nope. Nothing. Not a thing from any of my sources.
For days, I prayed the Lord would help me find his address. All things that are hidden or lost are eventually found, right? Well, in the case of this man’s mailing address, that was a no and I was running out of precious time.
I gave up and handed the invitation to the pastor’s wife and asked that she take care of it. I had exhausted all my resources and at that point revival was mere hours from starting. There was nothing else I could do, but continue to pray for the man’s salvation, regardless of whether he received an invitation or not.
On the sixth night of revival, the pastor was welcoming out visitors. He welcomed a man by his first name, but I didn’t catch it. I was battling an epic cold during this time, so it’s likely I was busy grabbing a cough drop or searching for my hanky. My mother caught my attention and said, “That’s him.” Of course, too focused on my temporary relief from the sinus infection, it took me a minute to process what she had said and to whom she was referring.
The man that I spent hours upon hours searching for his address and failed to find was seated on the back pew. Friend, when an altar call was given, the man prayed and gave his life to the Lord that night!
I have absolutely no clue if the pastor’s wife delivered the invitation I had written to the man. I don’t know if he even saw the letter at all. I could not find an address for him. He was essentially lost to me. But, the Lord found him and offered the man eternal salvation.
I do remember my pastor saying that he had spoken with the man several times the day that he decided to attended revival. So, whether the invitation from me was handed to him or my pastor invited him, I do not know. And truthfully, it does not matter. I am reminded of a verse found in 1 Corinthians. 1 Corinthians 3:7 says, “So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.” Regardless of who invited the man, it was God that found him and saved his soul from Hell.
So, I guess to answer my original question: What’s lost and hidden will be eventually find, right? The answer is always yes. Those prayers you’re praying for your lost friend of family member, the ones where you ask to the Good Lord to save them, they will be answered. You might have a hard time getting through to your loved ones, but someone, somehow, and someday will. A little effort, a little faith, and a whole lot of prayer goes a long way.
Keep the faith-