Well, I'm feeling like Rhoda and the people that prayed for Peter....you know the girl that was so excited to see Peter, that she left him at the gate....and then the others didn't believe her, even though they were praying for Peter's release at that very moment! (Acts 12). I've been praying for my unsaved co-workers' salvation for years now. But after so many years, I guess even though I've prayed for them, deep down I wasn't so sure the Lord would answer this prayer, for even one co-worker. I work with a lot of stubborn people. LOL! That said, I have been super blessed to work with several that are believes and we talk openly with each other about our faith.
Anyway, the Lord answered the prayer for salvation for one of my co-workers in an unexpected way. About 4 months ago, this co-worker showed up at my church. I think I was as surprised to see him as he was to see me. I had known that this co-worker was raised in and had continued to attend a denomination that was more about tradition and religion than relationship with God. He had also seemed to dismiss a literal interpretation of the Bible and my belief that we lived in the end times when I shared my faith in the past with him. So you can see why I was shocked to have him show up at my church, where we are about as literal as you can get regarding the Bible.
Anyway, I welcomed my co-worker at church, but was careful not to bring it up at work that week, as I didn't want to scare him off! LOL! He did not come the next week, so I thought that was it. Fast forward about 6 weeks....my co-worker, his wife and their child show up at church. Come to find out, they had been there the week before, and I didn't even know it! I guess I was too tired to pay attention to who was around me that day (I work the midnight shift for those that didn't know). But then next week they didn't come back.
A few weeks later I decided to mention our Easter play to my co-worker at work, because it was going to be earlier than the regular service and I didn't want him to show up late if he came (that, and I was curious to see if he might be coming back). He said they might come that week, but wasn't sure. Well, they didn't come, so I thought maybe that was it. (I guess I was being pretty pessimistic *sigh*).
Fast foward to the beginning of this month. My co-worker's mother-in-law had come to spend a few weeks with her daughter. They all came to visit church together. Later I found out that they were going to go out to eat with our pastor that week to get to know them better. A few days later I found out the story of why they came to our church and why they decided to come regularly now.
To make a long story short, my co-worker's wife had started reading the Bible on her own several years ago. She came to realize that their religion was empty. She slowly nudged her husband toward reading the Scriptures for himself also. As a result, both of them came to accept the Lord as their Savior. They knew they needed to find a different church to go to. His wife's mom had also come around after getting into the Word, presumably through the nudging of her daughter. It sounds like they are the only ones in their family on both sides that are known to be saved.
After two years of searching for a sound Bible church, they finally found ours. Sounds like they are here to stay, and now I have another known brother in Christ working next to me. He's pretty quiet though, so we'll see if he opens up like the others. After I get through my crazy couple weeks of overtime I plan to have his wife over to get to know her better. Their son is just a few months younger than my son, so our kids can play together. I super excited.....but super, super amazed to see how the Lord worked in these folk's lives.
On a bit of a sour note, I was talking to an unsaved co-worker about getting to know neighbors and new people (she moved to her house last year), and I mentioned about our co-worker now going to our church, and that I was excited to get to know his wife. Well, let's just say, she is in the same denomination that they came out of, and she is adamant that the Bible shouldn't be taken literally. Any time I have quoted Scripture, she immediately proceeds to shut me up and talk over me, so she doesn't have to hear it. At the time I wasn't thinking about what she would think about our co-worker coming to my church. Well, apparently she thinks I'm part of a cult or something, they way she looked at me and talked down to me. I made it clear that they came after reading the Bible for themselves and that I never invited them. Boy she didn't like that at all. She's going to be a tough one to get through to!
An another note, I have another co-worker that the Lord seems to be working on. This co-worker has kids that live in Israel. They are all secular Jews. He was a big help when we were planning our Israel trip last year. He is well aware that I am a Christian and that I believe that we live in the end times. He has brought me several gifts after the times he goes to visit his kids in Israel, because he said he wants to "bless those that bless the Jews"...funny, coming from an unbeliever. I got the courage, after much prompting from the Holy Spirit, to give him a copy of Joel Rosenberg's book "Epicenter", which he read and said he enjoyed. We still talk about Israel often.
Last week, he asked what was up. I asked what he thought about the strong coalition formed in Israel. He hadn't heard about it, so I emailed him the article. He started in an angry rant about how selfish his kids were to bring up their kids in such a dangerous country and why would anybody in "God's name" want to live there....visit YES! live there NO! I carefully chose my words, and told him that it is God that has a purpose in all of this. He stomped off.
I went over to make sure he wasn't mad at me...and he said he wasn't, just that he was upset that his grand-babies were living in danger. I told him that I was praying for him and his family all the time and he seemed to appreciate it. In fact, he is heading over to Israel next week. Please keep him and his family in your prayers. I really believe something hit him last week that made him connect some dots. Pray that his heart opens to the Truth as it has been clearly shown to him.
Anyway, sorry for this turning into a ramble. I'm just beaming with joy about my co-worker and his wife getting saved. God really does answer prayers! Now I have more motivation to keep praying for the rest of them.