I arrived at the church this morning to share God’s Word and heard the story of the storm that lifted the new roof. Cathy and I experienced the storm in White River on Thursday evening. Hail boomed on the roof as the heavy thunderstorm passed overhead. When the storm reached the village of Shabalale the high winds lifted and blew away one half of the new roof.
My prayer for this morning service continued to bring me to John the disciple. Apparently that was the path the Holy Spirit was directing me. What I didn’t know was how God would knit that sermon to touch the hearts of the people. The roof became an example of change in the hearts of the people.
John is usually called the disciple of love or the disciple whom Jesus loved. But the nickname for John was Boanerges, son of thunder. That name was given to him and his brother James by Jesus. That Greek word means stormy, uncontrolled, emotional and passionate.
Here I looked at the open roof and understood the feelings that gripped the crowd when they lamented about their new church building. I had been at their church several years before when it was only a tent. The next time I came it was a shack. A rooster jumped on the open window and crowed while I preached. One of the men in the crowd laughingly reminded me of that moment in the past.
Now they had come to the point of building a brick building and the new tin roof was ripped from the metal braces. That became the illustration of change. Jesus wanted to see change in the heart and mind of John. He was selfish, demanding, bigoted and pushy disciple. He wanted to call fire from heaven to destroy a Samaritan village. He wanted to sit on Christ’s right or left hand. He told another that he was not one of the disciples so he shouldn’t heal in Christ’s name.
How did he become the disciple of love? Apparently Jesus asked his mother to treat him like her own son. After Christ died and rose from the dead John brought Mary into his home until her passing. I suspect that Mary assisted in the changes needed in the heart and mind of the stormy disciple.
What changes needed to happen in each person’s heart and mind? John and that storm damaged roof became the reminder of changes which needed attention in each heart.
I am always amazed at the unique ways that God provides. He can use a storm to breathe life into His Word.
Thank you for praying for us as serve Him with you.
Cathy and Danny Sartin
Copyright © Danny Sartin and Deeper Still Missions. All Rights Reserved.
This on the field report is written for those who support Deeper Still Missions and our goal of missionary retention.
Deeper Still Missions devotionals are protected by international copyright laws. To request reprint permission contact the offices of DSM. Permission is granted and encouraged to forward this email in its entirety to others without making any changes or deletions.
To unsubscribe from reports just reply to this email with the subject unsubscribe. You can contact Deeper Still Missions at P.O. Box 343370 Bartlett, TN 38134.
Four decade veteran of youth ministry in churches, Youth For Christ and now is the Founder and Executive Director of Deeper Still Missions. Danny and his wife Cathy spend most of their time mentoring missionaries in Africa, Europe, Central America and North America. Future opportunities include South America and the Asia Pacific area.