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There was a great mourning that day.
There was a great rejoicing that day.
Hell groveled and kicked its feet. It was hit hard.
Heaven shouted a glorious song and raised high its arms.
A man died. A spirit came alive.
It happened in his friend’s basement. They had all decided several months before to come together on a weekly basis to pray. He had attended faithfully even when others didn’t show. Yet, he never felt God.
That was why he came; he saw the others’ joy and peace and desperately wanted it. He had said “the prayer” years ago and had even seen God work in him, but he felt empty now. Day by day his life droned on, like a lost hiker stuck in a thick gray bog, trudging on and on in slow, painful circles. He had become discouraged, disheartened, dissatisfied, and eventually depressed. Day by day his story was the same: “Hey guys! What’s up? Nothing much here… really, I’m fine!” Night by night he cried the same prayer towards his ceiling: “My God, my God, What am I doing wrong? Why don’t I hear you? Why can’t I feel you? Is it my fault, or don’t you care? Are you even there?
He distracted himself for a while. He tried the knife, but couldn’t’ stand the blood. So he found a new drug: fire. He’d always affinity for flame, so it seemed natural to write on himself with a glowing paper clip, again and again.
One week before that blessed rebirthing; he was being beaten, as usual, but more so than the norm. In the confidence of a friend he revealed his plan: a thought to his mind straight from hell.
“I’m tempted to end it. I can’t stand this numbness. I’d rather be broken than go on like this. If He doesn’t act soon, and I mean very soon, I’ll take a drill to my head.” She didn’t condemn, she was just there for him. She listened to him, and then they prayed.
Just one week later, same time and same place, he sat on the floor of that basement. All lights were out, every knee bowed, and that’s when his prayers were answered.
He made an outcry with all that he was.
“God, I can’t do this. They say that you can, but I haven’t seen you since I don’t know when. ‘Give me something right now’ is my only plea. Show me now. I am done trying to do it myself. I give it to You, so, please, can You help? Please, break me of me and replace me with you. I want to feel, to breathe, to live, to be new.
“I give up. I’m at the end of the road. Nowhere else I can turn; to no one else I can go. This is my final request: Prove Yourself. Show me your love. Show me your power. Overcome me so much that I beg You to stop. Come to me so fully that it’s beyond all belief. Leave me no doubt in my life. If you don’t show up now, I’ll die tonight.”
He closed his eyes so tight that his eyelids felt fused together, a wall that light could not penetrate.
A Bible lay, text side down, at his feet. The worship droned on in the back of his mind. He was waiting for God.
Then, a little thought entered his mind. A small, seemingly insignificant thought popped into his head.
He thought of a friend that he had. He pictured her face beaming and content; she was standing in a field. Suddenly, her countenance changed: fear, agony, writhing in darkness.
He saw her burning in Hell.
The shock churned his stomach. He immediately began a new prayer, this time, for her. He implored God to save her, to keep her alive so that she wouldn’t choose to die. He didn’t matter anymore. He loved her too much to think of that possibility. From the core of all that he was, he cried out to heaven to let him be killed, even be sent to hell, to take her place in some way so she could know peace and life.
Then, as he said these very words in his heart, Satan began to weep.
Heaven began to sing.
Thousands upon thousands of the angels of YAHWEH broke through the silence of the room, singing a deafening chorus of, “Glory upon glory to The Lamb who was slain! Praise Him forever, hallelujah!”
The light turned on in that young man’s heart.
His spirit leapt!
Jesus was right there with him forever and ever, and He said,
“My child! I AM the Life! I took the pain! I AM the one who died, but I AM now alive!
“I made you to worship, not strive by yourself. Death died that day on the cross.
“I AM the one who has done it all… and I did it for you!
“I AM love! I took the punishment for you and your friend. I took upon myself the burden of all who have and will inhabit this earth. Whether they accept it or not, I did it for them.
“I’ve been here, waiting and calling, always. I just wanted you to STOP trying to live up to Me and to just take what I offer: Myself.
“I have given you My Love, My Hope, My Power, My Assurance, My Wisdom…
“I give you My all!”
It was too much.
With each word his mouth opened wider and his eyes shut tighter till it went beyond what he could have thought possible. It was all more than he could have thought possible. With every passing moment the tears streamed down his face more. A sound of pure, undefiled adoration escaped his throat.
The world didn’t matter. His petty worries had vanished like a vapor. He was floating. In his mind he sang; loader than a thousand oceans he sang!
“You are the one! Jesus, You are the only one! You did it all! Jesus, my Lord, You are the only one!
YOU ARE MY ONLY ONE!”
It was still too much. He did all he could not to explode with joy. He actually had to ask God to ease up, because there was only so much he could take.
He rose to his feet and felt himself move towards the good friend of his who had prayed for him and been there for him. He told her all that had happened in an almost inappropriately loud whisper that brimmed and simmered with barely contained excitement.
As she listened, her smile grew bigger just seeing him go on. When he had finally finished, she simply said,
“Oh, I know! I saw it the exact moment that it occurred!”
Then they prayed.
Only one week after praying about suicide and doubt, they prayed again…
Only this time, it was a very different sort of prayer.
The original “high” lasted over three straight days, but he always felt a peace after that… even in difficult times full of his mistakes.
Since then he has shared with the unsaved friend whom The Lord used to bring him around, and he knows that God is working there too.