By Linda Gray
And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” Acts 16:31 ESV
Her response was not a surprise. One day it dawned on me that because of my mom’s faith in Jesus, 5 generations of her family were now believers. My mom was the most genuinely humble person I have ever known. So, maybe she was as surprised as I was at my discovery. When she passed away in 2008, I made her pastor aware of the impact she had had on our family.
One of God’s promises that I have clung to ever since I memorized the verse as a child is Acts 16:31. Acts 16:16-34 sets up the context in which this verse was written. What struck me not long ago – okay it was today when I reread the story—is that the jailer was not only concerned about his salvation but that of his family as well.
Now when my mother died there were still family members who had not come to Christ. After finding her personal prayer list in one of her Bibles, it was evident that salvation for her entire family was her main petition. I prayed for family members, too but probably not with as much passion as she had. So, I had to pick up the slack.
Since 2008, my brother, through the drawing of the Holy Spirit, saw his desperate need for a Savior. While in the hospital recovering from a stroke, he simply cried out, “Jesus, I need you!” This happened on his biological birthday. So, two birthdays in one day. Pretty awesome! Other family members—her grandchildren and great-grandchildren have also placed their trust in Jesus.
Maybe you’re saying, “But I have prayed for _____ many years. God hasn’t answered my prayers. I don’t think they will ever come to Christ.” Let me encourage you to keep praying. My father came to Christ a few days before he passed away from lung cancer. Mom and I had been praying for years! Oh, by the way, it’s not our job to save people. The Holy Spirit draws them. So, exhale and let Him do the work.
I was sitting in church one Sunday and we were singing “Waymaker” by Michael W. Smith. Pay attention and sing along:
Waymaker, miracle worker
Promise keeper, light in the darkness
My God, that is who You are
When we got to the bridge below, the Lord really drove those lyrics home:
Even when I don't see it, You're working
Even when I can't feel it, You're working
You never stop, You never stop working
You never stop, You never stop working
Do I still have family members that need a relationship with Jesus? Yes! Do I believe they will come to Christ? Yes! Why? Because God said so! He keeps His promises and NEVER stops working!
And to quote Winston Churchill, “Never, never, never give up!”
Heavenly Father, what an assurance we have that when we surrender our lives to You, You begin to work in our families as well. Lord, there are still loved ones who have not made that step to You. Sometimes it seems they are far from trusting in Your Son, Jesus as their Savior. We ask that You send the Holy Spirit to draw them to You. Remind us that You are constantly at work. Help us to never, never, never give up! In Jesus’ Name, Amen!
© 2021 by Linda Gray. All rights reserved.
Do you know Jesus Christ as your personal Savior? Pull up a chair… He’s been waiting for you.
Need a refill? Please join us at the Encouragement Café with Luann and Friends.
The conversation at the Café is always hot and fresh. We invite you to listen in as we gather around the table to discuss everyday life.
Comfort food for your soul is always on our menu, and friends are always close enough to hug. We invite you to join us daily, as our writer’s share how the Lord continues to transform them into His glorious image.
Still craving more…Join us as we grow together in grace and truth through our online bible study.
Stop by Encouragement Café and listen as the girls share life. Find podcasts, videos, Bible studies, prayer, resources and daily helpings of hope, laughter and friendship around our table. We've saved a seat just for you!